Urbanism for a Difficult Future : Practical Responses to the Climate Crisis book cover
1st Edition

Urbanism for a Difficult Future
Practical Responses to the Climate Crisis

ISBN 9781032022659
Published September 29, 2022 by Routledge
190 Pages 54 Color Illustrations

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Book Description

Urbanism for a Difficult Future: Practical Responses to the Climate Crisis is a much-needed guide to launching the next generation of land use planning and urbanism that will enable us to adapt to and survive the consequences of climate change.

The book offers strong, straightforward measures for creating a landscape of resilience via pockets of self-sufficiencies. It demonstrates how to secure systems that sustain life (energy, water, food, waste, and production of essential goods) as well as political and social protocols enabling agile decision-making in managing these systems effectively at local levels. It also provides the design principles for creating a built environment that will enable the kind of localization we need for adaptation. The book explores how it is possible to create a life that does not depend on large-scale regional sustenance systems which are likely to be disrupted or fail.

This book uncovers how to enable people to be creative, productive, and supportive at local levels, so that we can achieve strong and diverse local economies that can sustain life. It will appeal to students, planners, and policy makers working in environmental studies, environmental engineering, urban and regional planning, architecture, landscape architecture, and urbanism.

Table of Contents

Foreword by Andrés Duany  1. The Approach  2. Why Adaptation?  3. Adaptation Village: A Development Model  4. Enabling Relocation  5. Localizing Sustenance Systems  6. Social Organization and Governance  7. Design Principles  8. Life in the 21st Century  9. Conclusion  Afterword by Paul Crabtree  Bibliography  Appendix A: Tools for Coding  Appendix B: Essential Terms and concepts for Adaptation Urbanism

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Korkut Onaran is a founder principal of Pel-Ona Architects and Urbanists. He also teaches as adjunct in the College of Architecture and Planning, University of Colorado Denver. Urbanism, regulation cultures, and development codes have been a focus of his teaching and practice. His book Crafting Form-based Codes: Resilient Design, Policy, and Regulation was published by Routledge in 2019.


"Here is the rare book that anticipates with commonsense intelligence the most practical problems of how we will inhabit our landscape in the 21st century. The author recognizes the macro trends of downscaling and re-localization that will determine how we live in a coming period of industrial de-growth, changing climate, and social crisis. The writing is straightforward, clear, and muscular, conveying an urgent and purposeful spirit of facing the facts and getting things done."

James Howard Kunstler, Author of The Geography of Nowhere, The Long Emergency, and World Made by Hand

"In this ground-breaking book, Korkut Onaran tackles the inconvenient truth that humans must adapt to the accelerating impacts of climate change: where we’ll live, how we’ll live – and how we can successfully live together. This is an indispensable starting point for charting a resilient and humane future."

Rick Cole, Executive Director of The Congress for the New Urbanism (CNU)