Urban Sprawl in Western Europe and the United States: 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Urban Sprawl in Western Europe and the United States

1st Edition

By Chang-Hee Christine Bae

Edited by Harry W. Richardson


344 pages

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Urban sprawl is one of the key planning issues today. This book compares Western Europe and the USA, focusing on anti-sprawl policies. The USA is known for its settlement patterns that emphasize low-density suburban development and extreme automobile dependence, whereas European countries emphasize higher densities, pro-transit policies and more compact urban growth. Yet, on closer inspection, the differences are not as wide as first appears. A key feature of the book is the attention given to France; its experience is little known in the English-speaking world. The book concludes that both continents can offer each other useful insights and perhaps policy guidance.


’This newly-published collection of papers presents original research findings from Europe and North America on one of the most important and most contentious issues for planners worldwide: how far is it possible or desirable to limit urban growth so as to promote more sustainable transport patterns?’ Professor Sir Peter Hall, Institute of Community Studies, London, UK ’Sprawl is back on the agendas of governments in most Western countries, and is now a priority concern of urban policy and planning…This edited collection is a substantial contribution to those debates…a stimulating and highly informative collection. It offers detailed empirical analyses and policy reviews of European urban situations that are not widely available in English…a must for anyone interested in the current debates on emerging urban forms and the dilemmas facing contemporary land-use planning and urban policy generally.’ Population, Space and Place ’Urban sprawl is a worldwide concern nowadays…it is thus stimulating to read a comparison of three countries, with some excursions to Switzerland, Austria and Korea. This book is interesting in many respects.’ Journal of Housing and the Built Environment

Table of Contents

Contents: Introduction, Chang-Hee Christine Bae and Harry W. Richardson. Part I: The United Kingdom: Sustainable settlements and jobs-housing balance, Michael Breheny; Reducing sprawl and delivering an urban renaissance in England: are these aims possible given current attitudes to urban living?, Katie Williams; Push-pull forces in the spatial organization of Greater London and South East England, Terence Bendixson; Knowledge, decisions and urban form: implications from the socialist calculation debate, Mark Pennington; The thirty-year's experiment with British greenbelt policy in Korea: a convergent path to sustainable development, Sang-Chuel Choe. Part II: France and Continental Western Europe: Urban sprawl in Rennes and 77 urban areas in France, 1982-1999; Remy Prud'homme and Bernard-Henri Nicot; Urban sprawl in France 1990-1999, Alain Sallez and Julien Birgi; Urban sprawl: is there a French case?, Denise Pumain; Concentration and dispersal of employment in French cities, Jean-Marie Huriot; Location patterns of producer services: between centralization and urban sprawl; French and Swiss case studies, Antoine Bailly; Urbanization and the social origins of national policies toward sprawl, Jefferey Sellers. Part III: The United States of America: US population and employment trends and sprawl issues, Harry W. Richardson and Peter Gordon; Urban containment American style: a preliminary assessment, Arthur C. Nelson; Local innovations in controlling sprawl: experiences with several approaches in the Seattle urban region, Donald Miller; Immigration and densities: a contribution to the compact cities and sprawl debates, Chang-Hee Christine Bae; Transit and density: Atlanta, the United States and Western Europe, Alain Bertaud and Harry W. Richardson; Traffic and sprawl: evidence from US commuting, 1985 to 1997, Randall Crane and Daniel G. Chatman; Index.

About the Author/Editor

Harry W. Richardson holds the James Irvine Chair of Urban and Regional Planning at the School of Policy, Planning and Development, University of Southern California, USA. Dr Chang-Hee Christine Bae is Associate Professor in the Department of Urban Design and Planning at the College of Architecture and Urban Planning, University of Washington, USA.

About the Series

Urban Planning and Environment

Urban Planning and Environment
Maintaining and enhancing living conditions in cities through a combination of physical planning and environmental management is a newly emerging focus of governments around the world. For example, local governments seek to insulate sensitive land uses such as residential areas from environmentally intrusive activities such as major transport facilities and manufacturing. Regional governments protect water quality and natural habitat by enforcing pollution controls and regulating the location of growth. Some national governments fund acquisition of strategically important sites, facilitate the renewal of brown fields, and even develop integrated environmental quality plans. The aim of this series is to share information on experiments and best practices of governments at several levels. These empirically-based studies present and critically assess a variety of initiatives to improve environmental quality. Although institutional and cultural contexts vary, lessons from one commonly can provide useful ideas to other communities. Each of the contributions are independently peer reviewed, and are intended to be helpful to professional planners and environmental managers, elected officials, representatives of NGOs, and researchers seeking improved ways to resolve environmental problems in urban areas and to foster sustainable urban development.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
POLITICAL SCIENCE / Public Policy / City Planning & Urban Development