Fit: An Architect's Manifesto

Princeton University Press
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Fit is a book about architecture and society that seeks to fundamentally change how architects and the public think about the task of design. Distinguished architect and urbanist Robert Geddes argues that buildings, landscapes, and cities should be designed to fit: fit the purpose, fit the place, fit future possibilities. Fit replaces old paradigms, such as form follows function, and less is more, by recognizing that the relationship between architecture and society is a true dialogue--dynamic, complex, and, if carried out with knowledge and skill, richly rewarding.

With a tip of the hat to John Dewey, Fit explores architecture as we experience it. Geddes starts with questions: Why do we design where we live and work? Why do we not just live in nature, or in chaos? Why does society care about architecture? Why does it really matter? Fit answers these questions through a fresh examination of the basic purposes and elements of architecture--beginning in nature, combining function and expression, and leaving a legacy of form.


Lively, charming, and gently persuasive, the book shows brilliant examples of fit: from Thomas Jefferson's University of Virginia and Louis Kahn's Exeter Library to contemporary triumphs such as the Apple Store on New York's Fifth Avenue, Chicago's Millennium Park, and Seattle's Pike Place.



Fit is a book for everyone, because we all live in constructions--buildings, landscapes, and, increasingly, cities. It provokes architects and planners, humanists and scientists, civic leaders and citizens to reconsider what is at stake in architecture--and why it delights us.

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About the author

Robert Geddes is an architect, urbanist, and teacher. He is dean emeritus of the Princeton School of Architecture; Henry Luce Professor Emeritus of Architecture, Urbanism, and History at New York University; and a fellow of the New York Institute for the Humanities and the National Academy of Design. The American Institute of Architects honored his professional firm for its "design quality, respect for the environment, and social concern."
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Additional Information

Publisher
Princeton University Press
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Published on
Oct 28, 2012
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Pages
136
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ISBN
9781400844548
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Language
English
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Genres
Architecture / Buildings / Public, Commercial & Industrial
Architecture / Criticism
Social Science / Sociology / Urban
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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You can use this book to design a house for yourself with your family; you can use it to work with your neighbors to improve your town and neighborhood; you can use it to design an office, or a workshop, or a public building. And you can use it to guide you in the actual process of construction. After a ten-year silence, Christopher Alexander and his colleagues at the Center for Environmental Structure are now publishing a major statement in the form of three books which will, in their words, "lay the basis for an entirely new approach to architecture, building and planning, which will we hope replace existing ideas and practices entirely." The three books are The Timeless Way of Building, The Oregon Experiment, and this book, A Pattern Language. At the core of these books is the idea that people should design for themselves their own houses, streets, and communities. This idea may be radical (it implies a radical transformation of the architectural profession) but it comes simply from the observation that most of the wonderful places of the world were not made by architects but by the people. At the core of the books, too, is the point that in designing their environments people always rely on certain "languages," which, like the languages we speak, allow them to articulate and communicate an infinite variety of designs within a forma system which gives them coherence. This book provides a language of this kind. It will enable a person to make a design for almost any kind of building, or any part of the built environment. "Patterns," the units of this language, are answers to design problems (How high should a window sill be? How many stories should a building have? How much space in a neighborhood should be devoted to grass and trees?). More than 250 of the patterns in this pattern language are given: each consists of a problem statement, a discussion of the problem with an illustration, and a solution. As the authors say in their introduction, many of the patterns are archetypal, so deeply rooted in the nature of things that it seemly likely that they will be a part of human nature, and human action, as much in five hundred years as they are today.
A complete guide to preparing construction documentation from a design perspective

Construction Drawings and Details for Interiors has become a must-have guide for students of interior design. It covers the essentials of traditional and computer-aided drafting with a uniquely design-oriented perspective. No other text provides this kind of attention to detail. Inside, you'll find specialty drawings, a sensitivity to aesthetic concerns, and real-world guidance from leaders in the field of interior design. Updated content is presented here in a highly visual format, making it easy to learn the basics of drawing for each phase of the design process.

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Written by designers, for designers, Construction Drawings and Details for Interiors remains a standout choice for the fields of interior design, technical drawing, and construction documentation. From schematics through to working drawings, learn to communicate your vision every step of the way.

By the year 2000, half of humanity will live in urban areas. The problems of large-scale urbanization are profound, and coping with growth in the world's cities will be the most pressing challenge of the 21st century.In June 1996, the third in a series of United Nations sponsored conferences on global concerns was held: the Conference on Human Settlements, Habitat II. In preparation for that meeting, Robert Geddes, one of the nation's most respected and influential architects and urban designers, invited leading experts to New York to consider the experience of urban areas in Canada, Mexico, and the United States in order to develop concrete proposals for improving our built environment. Cities in Our Future presents and examines issues set forth at that gathering.Urban and regional planners, architects, urban designers, and other experts from across North America examine the impact of a city's growth and form on the ability of its citizens to achieve and maintain social equity and environmental health. Case studies of five North American metropolitan areas -- New York, Toronto, Cascadia (Vancouver, Seattle, Portland), Mexico City, and Los Angeles -- are presented, with in-depth analyses of their physical terrain, design, planning, and development. Contributors discuss problems the cities have experienced, how those problems have been handled, and strategies for avoiding or managing similar problems in the future. They consider historical and contemporary transformations of the cities as well as issues of environment, equity, sustainable development, governance, and civic design.In addition to the case studies, Cities in Our Future features a foreword by Dr. Wally N'Dow, secretary-general of the United Nations Centre for Human Settlements-Habitat II, that describes the global nature of urbanization problems; an insightful introduction by urban critic Ellen Posner that provides an overview of important issues facing urban areas in the twenty-first century; a broad examination of the concept of social equity by political philosopher Alan Ryan of Oxford University; and a concise description of environmental health issues by John Spengler of the Harvard School of Public Health. The distinguished contributors representing the five urban regions are Alan Artibise, Jonathan Barnett, Gardner Church, Ken Greenberg, Marilou McPhedran, Ann Vernez Moudon, Xavier Cortes Rocha, Ethan Seltzer, Richard Weinstein, and Robert Yaro.
Hailed as "extraordinarily learned" (New York Times), "blithe in spirit and unerring in vision," (New York Magazine), and the "definitive record of New York's architectural heritage" (Municipal Art Society), Norval White and Elliot Willensky's book is an essential reference for everyone with an interest in architecture and those who simply want to know more about New York City. First published in 1968, the AIA Guide to New York City has long been the definitive guide to the city's architecture. Moving through all five boroughs, neighborhood by neighborhood, it offers the most complete overview of New York's significant places, past and present. The Fifth Edition continues to include places of historical importance--including extensive coverage of the World Trade Center site--while also taking full account of the construction boom of the past 10 years, a boom that has given rise to an unprecedented number of new buildings by such architects as Frank Gehry, Norman Foster, and Renzo Piano. All of the buildings included in the Fourth Edition have been revisited and re-photographed and much of the commentary has been re-written, and coverage of the outer boroughs--particularly Brooklyn--has been expanded. Famed skyscrapers and historic landmarks are detailed, but so, too, are firehouses, parks, churches, parking garages, monuments, and bridges. Boasting more than 3000 new photographs, 100 enhanced maps, and thousands of short and spirited entries, the guide is arranged geographically by borough, with each borough divided into sectors and then into neighborhood. Extensive commentaries describe the character of the divisions. Knowledgeable, playful, and beautifully illustrated, here is the ultimate guided tour of New York's architectural treasures. Acclaim for earlier editions of the AIA Guide to New York City: "An extraordinarily learned, personable exegesis of our metropolis. No other American or, for that matter, world city can boast so definitive a one-volume guide to its built environment." -- Philip Lopate, New York Times "Blithe in spirit and unerring in vision." -- New York Magazine "A definitive record of New York's architectural heritage... witty and helpful pocketful which serves as arbiter of architects, Baedeker for boulevardiers, catalog for the curious, primer for preservationists, and sourcebook to students. For all who seek to know of New York, it is here. No home should be without a copy." -- Municipal Art Society "There are two reasons the guide has entered the pantheon of New York books. One is its encyclopedic nature, and the other is its inimitable style--'smart, vivid, funny and opinionated' as the architectural historian Christopher Gray once summed it up in pithy W & W fashion." -- Constance Rosenblum, New York Times "A book for architectural gourmands and gastronomic gourmets." -- The Village Voice
By the year 2000, half of humanity will live in urban areas. The problems of large-scale urbanization are profound, and coping with growth in the world's cities will be the most pressing challenge of the 21st century.In June 1996, the third in a series of United Nations sponsored conferences on global concerns was held: the Conference on Human Settlements, Habitat II. In preparation for that meeting, Robert Geddes, one of the nation's most respected and influential architects and urban designers, invited leading experts to New York to consider the experience of urban areas in Canada, Mexico, and the United States in order to develop concrete proposals for improving our built environment. Cities in Our Future presents and examines issues set forth at that gathering.Urban and regional planners, architects, urban designers, and other experts from across North America examine the impact of a city's growth and form on the ability of its citizens to achieve and maintain social equity and environmental health. Case studies of five North American metropolitan areas -- New York, Toronto, Cascadia (Vancouver, Seattle, Portland), Mexico City, and Los Angeles -- are presented, with in-depth analyses of their physical terrain, design, planning, and development. Contributors discuss problems the cities have experienced, how those problems have been handled, and strategies for avoiding or managing similar problems in the future. They consider historical and contemporary transformations of the cities as well as issues of environment, equity, sustainable development, governance, and civic design.In addition to the case studies, Cities in Our Future features a foreword by Dr. Wally N'Dow, secretary-general of the United Nations Centre for Human Settlements-Habitat II, that describes the global nature of urbanization problems; an insightful introduction by urban critic Ellen Posner that provides an overview of important issues facing urban areas in the twenty-first century; a broad examination of the concept of social equity by political philosopher Alan Ryan of Oxford University; and a concise description of environmental health issues by John Spengler of the Harvard School of Public Health. The distinguished contributors representing the five urban regions are Alan Artibise, Jonathan Barnett, Gardner Church, Ken Greenberg, Marilou McPhedran, Ann Vernez Moudon, Xavier Cortes Rocha, Ethan Seltzer, Richard Weinstein, and Robert Yaro.
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