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Tag Archives: Urban Planning

KunstlerCast #141: Interstate 69 with Matt Dellinger

The Last Great American Highway? Released: Jan. 20, 2011 James Howard Kunstler is joined in the studio by author Matt Dellinger to discuss his new book, Interstate 69. Also known as “The NAFTA Highway,” I-69 is a proposed 1,400-mile mega-highway linking Canada to Mexico via the American heartland. This special one-hour conversation covers the economic more »

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KunstlerCast #139: Social Critic

H.L. Mencken, Tom Wolfe, Samuel Beckett Released: Jan. 6, 2011 James Howard Kunstler talks about his literary influences, including H.L. Mencken, Tom Wolfe and Samuel Beckett. He also explains the role of the social critic and how he separates his critic persona from his own personality. Lastly he muses on what he might like his more »

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KunstlerCast #130: Seattle

Starbucks City Released: Oct. 21, 2010 James Howard Kunstler shares his observations of Seattle based on his recent trip to that city. He believes that the Queen Anne Hill neighborhood gives one an idea of what the best of American urbanism can be, inspite of some clunky housing types. Though downtown is active and fairly more »

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KunstlerCast #127: The Tragedy of the Commons

JHK Visits Bay City Michigan Released: Sept. 30, 2010 James Howard Kunstler explains the Tragedy of the Commons, as first described by Garrett Hardin in 1968, as how this philosophical theory relates to the public realm, suburbia, private property, commerce, environmentalism and concepts of freedom. This episode also includes a short radio story produced by more »

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KunstlerCast #125: Cassandra, A Thought Experiment

JHK Travels Back in Time to Warn The American People of the Future that Awaits Them Released: Sept. 16, 2010. Duncan asks JHK what he would say to the American people of 1946 if he had the means to travel back in time. What would Kunstler tell them about the suburban dream as promised to more »

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KunstlerCast #121: Modern Family Living

Reacquainting With Our Relatives Released: Aug. 12, 2010. James Howard Kunstler muses on the suburban family living arrangement–past, present, future. Points of discussion include: “Boomerang Kids” (a.k.a. adult children living in their parents’ home), caring for seniors, and learning to live in closer proximity to family members. Direct Download: KunstlerCast_121.mp3 (38 MB | 32:35 mins.)

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KunstlerCast #120: Combating Sprawl

Personal Lifestyle Choices Released: Aug. 5, 2010 A listener asks what other ways average folks can combat sprawl without becoming a professional urban planner. JHK shares the story of his personal choice in 1970s to leave the big city and consciously live in a small American town with a livable urban fabric. Direct Download: KunstlerCast_120.mp3 more »

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KunstlerCast #119: The Projects

Concentrating Poverty Released: July 8, 2010. JHK explores a mostly abandoned low-income housing project in Duncan’s neighborhood. Two of the three 9-story brick “vertical slums” are boarded up and abandoned. They come complete with their own “rape-o-matic” tunnel for pedestrians to travel under the bridge ramp that separates them. Kunstler says these “towers in a more »

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KunstlerCast #118: A Great American Street

Strolling Uncle Sam’s Neighborhood Released: July 3, 2010. JHK and Duncan celebrate the Fourth of July by touring Uncle Sam’s neighborhood. They stroll down Second Street in Troy NY, admiring the 19th century architecture along the way. Destinations include: Russell Sage College, the county court house and one of only two privately owned and maintained more »

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KunstlerCast #117: Berlin

History, The Prankster Released: June 24, 2010. James Howard Kunstler reports on his recent trip to Berlin, Germany…where everybody knows his name. Thirteen years ago, JHK traveled to Berlin to research a chapter for his third nonfiction book, The City in Mind. On his recent trip, he discovered that the place has healed remarkably over more »

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KunstlerCast #115: Atlanta

Notes from the New South Released: June 10, 2010. James Howard Kunstler shares his observations after a recent trip to Atlanta, Ga. Check out JHK’s Essay “The Horror of Downtown Atlanta.” Atlanta Direct Download: KunstlerCast_115.mp3 (15 MB | 23:15 mins.) Listener Caller Line: 1-(866) 924-9499 toll-free

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KunstlerCast #114: Agrarian Urbanism

The New New Urbanism? Released: May 27, 2010. James Howard Kunstler recently returned from the 18th Annual Congress for the New Urbanism. Agrarian urbanism was a hot topic among many New Urbanists at the Congress and in this episode Kunstler takes the time to explore the topic of food production in cities. Rising energy prices more »

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KunstlerCast #112: The Politics of Place

Inversion of Assumed Roles Released: May 20, 2010. James Howard Kunstler examines the politics of place. Are the suburbs more conservative than cities? Why are people who try to conserve the historic fabric of their towns branded as radical liberals, while the agents of destruction in those towns call themselves “conservative?” What is the historical more »

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KunstlerCast #111: Brutalism

Despotic Modernist Architecture Released: May 13, 2010. James Howard Kunstler explains the origins of brutalism, the modernist architectural style that resulted in the horrible, poured concrete bunker-like buildings found all across the world. JHK explains why these concrete buildings age more rapidly, and less gracefully, than Roman concrete buildings. He also tells the story of more »

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KunstlerCast #110: Human Scale

Building for the Human Figure Released: May 6, 2010. James Howard Kunstler explains what it means to build to the human scale and how our modern built environment fails to do this.   Direct Download: KunstlerCast_110.mp3 (18 MB | 29:23 mins.)   Listener Caller Line: 1-(866) 924-9499 toll-free

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KunstlerCast #107: Sprawl Defenders

The Arguments For Suburbia Released: April 15, 2010. This conversation was recorded one day before James Howard Kunstler was scheduled to debate Randal O’Toole at Brown University in Providence, RI. O’Toole is a well-known advocate for the suburban living arrangement. Host Duncan Crary chats with JHK about the pro-suburbia arguments in preparation for the debate. more »

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KunstlerCast #103: Parking Militants & Hot Heads

Passionate Positions on Parking Released: March 18, 2010. James Howard Kunstler is sometimes propelled into “mad dog mode” when speaking about the modern American landscape. But tempers fly on all sides of these urban policy debates. And there are many times when the only sane response is to be angry about what we’ve done to more »

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KunstlerCast #102: Building the Future

The End of Jive Plastic Homes Released: March 11, 2010. James Howard Kunstler believes that one way or another, we’re going to end up living in a very different daily environment than the one we’re used to. In this episode, he discusses the future of building materials. JHK doesn’t believe that we’ll continue to use more »

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KunstlerCast #100: Rochester

A Robust Little City Released: Feb. 18, 2010. James Howard Kunstler is pleasantly surprised by Rochester, N.Y., a small industrial city in the Great Lakes region. The first portion of this program features two of JHK’s former classmates who share stories about Jim’s college days at SUNY Brockport. The bulk of the show includes a more »

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KunstlerCast #94: Disneyfication of America

Our Cartoon Landscape Released: Dec. 24, 2009. James Howard Kunstler explains the story behind Disneyland, Disney World, and Walt Disney’s legacy on the American built environment.   Direct Download: KunstlerCast_94.mp3 (27 MB | 43:44 mins.) Listener Caller Line: 1-(866) 924-9499 toll-free Announcement: There will be a staged-reading of James Howard Kunstler’s play, “Big Slide” this more »

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KunstlerCast #93: College Campuses

Programming Young People for Cynicism Released: Dec. 17, 2009. James Howard Kunstler discusses the built environment on the American college campus and how modernist ideas about architecture are programming young people to become cynical. Kunstler talks about some of the ugliest campuses in the country, as well as some of the best. Even some of more »

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KunstlerCast #90: The Demise of Happy Motoring

Cruising Toward Collapse with a Stunning Stupidity Released: Nov. 26, 2009. James Howard Kunstler believes that the Happy Motoring project is running out of time. Peak Oil and problems with alternative energy aren’t the only issues facing future motorists. He thinks that car ownership will become less democratic in the future as cars become too more »

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KunstlerCast #89: Everyday Architecture

Empty Gestures, Darth Vader Windows & Porches for Leprechauns Released: Nov. 19, 2009. James Howard Kunstler thinks that most modern buildings are not really architecture, they’re just manufactured boxes. Whether it’s suburban houses, or retail stores, the buildings of our everyday environment send the message that we don’t care about ourselves or our surroundings. Kunstler more »

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KunstlerCast #88: In General

The Role of Generalists in a Hyper-Specialist Society Released: Nov. 12, 2009. James Howard Kunstler speaks about the role of generalists in a world of hyper specialists. Although hyper-specialists are experts in their narrow fields, their work is often disregardful of the larger picture. Traffic engineers, for example, can move huge numbers of cars extremely more »

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KunstlerCast #87: Boston

Where Gentrification is a Good Thing Released: Nov. 5, 2009. James Howard Kunstler thinks Boston is one of the few healthy major cities left in the U.S. He says gentrification has been a good thing for the city. He is disappointed with the outcome of Boston’s “big dig” project, though. When the city finally placed more »

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