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Circa I: What is a city? Each one is a mongrel, bred off unique circumstances, diverse human needs, and burgeoning technologies

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It is quite clear that we have come to, or are rapidly approaching, the end of a special epoch in the industrial West ¿ characterized by sprawling urban-suburban complexes, massive interlinked highway systems, rich high-technology industries, and profligate consumerism, and fostered by an economic structure that favors an energy-extravagant society. It has been an epoch in which the individual automobile has been the technological heart. Perhaps for this reason, and also for many other reasons, those who are concerned with cities seem to be reformulating basic or root questions: ¿What is a city?¿ ¿Why does it work, why does it not work?¿ Dependent upon one's answers to these questions will be the kind of ¿solution¿ one poses for the problems with which our cities are palpably afflicted.

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IEEE Spectrum  (Volume:13 ,  Issue: 7 )