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Read chapter 6 in the Merchant book, “Urban Environments, 1850-1960”.
Briefly summarize the chapter. As you do so, please address how adequately, in your opinion, did the early experts and policymakers respond, really for the first time, to the negative effects that dense urban populations had on the environment? The early cities were dirty and certainly environmental disasters, but is it possible that well-managed and modern cities might be part of the solution towards creating more sustainable systems regarding the urban environment? Think along the lines of quality mass transit systems, using the density of the population as an avenue for efficiency, and perhaps due to the proximity in which people will live and work, it might bring about a reduced demand for resources. What do you think? Can you find other sources (Internet research) that inform your opinion? Can you find examples?
Merchant, Chapter 6: Urban Environments, 2850-1960
Smithson, Robert. 1967. “A Tour of the Monuments Passaic, New Jersey”. (PDF) Originally published as “The Monuments of Passaic”, Artforum, December 1967, p.52-57.
Mumford, Lewis, “The Intolerable City: Must It Keep On Growing?” Harper’s, February 1926. Becoming Modern: America in the 1920s. Primary Source Collection