Darryl Chen, 26 06 11

Excerpts from Darryl Chen’s Productive Dystopia essay in ‘Utopia Forever’:

“Our narrative is modernity, and our dystopias are the super-planned, re-planned and unplanned environments of the modern world. The aberrations and abandoned spaces of our modern environments, the margins that are squeezed by the excesses of development, the new natures that are produced in lieu of what was natural, the waste that is left behind after the flight of capital— these are the instable interstices of modern life. They are latent territories that are both the unforeseen consequences of our modern impulse, as well as the raw material for a renewed project on the city. (more…)


Darryl Chen, 01 03 09

There is a received wisdom amongst 21st century urbanists that great damage was wrought upon cities by Modern Planning, with the 1933-penned Athens Charter as its Mein Kampf. Now, I don’t know about you, but I had never actually seen a copy let alone a referenced extract of this notorious text, all the while shaking my head at all the grade-separated pedestrian nightmares (sic), dysfunctional streets in the sky (double sic) and wastelands of open space under them (you get the picture). Never seen a snippet from the beast… until yesterday. (more…)


Darryl Chen, 21 07 08


The Academy of Urbanism, the UK’s (affirmative) answer to the Congress of the New Urbanism, can only be the most visible hi-jacking of the field of urbanism by various groups of professionals purporting to represent urbanists, but actually limiting the field of opportunity.

View the Academy of Urbanism manifesto here