Sunday, August 23, 2009

[東京都 p8.5] The Garden City

"The garden city movement is an approach to urban planning that was founded in 1898 by Sir Ebenezer Howard in the United Kingdom. Garden cities were intended to be planned, self-contained, communities surrounded by greenbelts, containing carefully balanced areas of residences, industry, and agriculture.

Inspired by the Utopian novel Looking Backward, Howard published To-morrow: a Peaceful Path to Real Reform in 1898 (which was reissued in 1902 as Garden Cities of To-morrow). His idealised garden city would house 32,000 people on a site of 6,000 acres (24,000,000 m2), planned on a concentric pattern with open spaces, public parks and six radial boulevards, 120 ft (37 m) wide, extending from the centre. The garden city would be self-sufficient and when it reached full population, a further garden city would be developed nearby. Howard envisaged a cluster of several garden cities as satellites of a central city of 50,000 people, linked by road and rail."
-- Wikipedia

"Shibusawa Eiichi, one of the most successful entrepreneurs of the Meiji era (1868-1912), formed the Denen Toshi Corporation (Garden City Corporation), predecessor to what today is the Tokyu Corporation. As suggested by the comapny's name, Eiichi sought to relieve Tokyo of overcrowding by building communities in pastoral settings, borrowing heavily from the ideas of Ebenezer Howard. However, unlike Howard, who sought to create self-contained new towns that were physically and economically independent of London, Eiichi envisioned Japan's garden cities as mainly bedroom communities where commuters and their families would reside. While Eiichi managed to build several suburban housing enclaves, the most successful being Denen Chofu, which today remains one of the greater Tokyo's most prestigious residential addresses, his dreams were sidetracked by World War II and the events that led up to it. It was through the vision and leadership of Eiichi's successor, Keita Gotoh ... that Tama Denen Toshi began to take form. A Japanese historian writes:
"the philanthropic garden city visions advocated by Shibusawa Eiichi had been transformed into a profiteering business venture by Keita Gotoh ... Gotoh had a conviction that the railway business was not about 'connecting points' but rather about the real estate opportunities that develop along a railway's corridor"
-- 'The Transit Metropolis' Robert Cervero

No comments:

Post a Comment