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Wednesday, January 19, 2005

Book of the Moment

This Saturday, the fine folks at Prairie Avenue Bookshop host a discussion by author Charles Waldheim on his new book Hilberseimer/Mies van der Rohe: Lafayette Park Detroit, the fourth book in the Case series.

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From the publisher:
At a time when many of the past decades' urban renewal projects are facing the wrecking ball, Detroit's Lafayette Park continues to be a model of urban livability. This in-depth look at the project explores why. Amid the oppressive urban blight of post-World War II Detroit, the Lafayette Park project emerged as a vibrant point of optimism and viability. Planned by Ludwig Hilberseimer, with concrete, glass, and steel buildings designed by Mies van der Rohe, and a park and gardens designed by Alfred Caldwell, this series of subsidized high- and low-rise apartments remains a superb example of an integrated community a half-century after its construction.

This latest volume in the CASE series published in collaboration with the Harvard University's Graduate School of Design examines an often-overlooked paragon of modern architecture's highest goals. Today, while public housing and other urban renewal projects are being abandoned and even torn down, this volume discusses not only the significance of Lafayette Park's singular achievement, but also its relevance to the continuing debates about the status of public housing in the contemporary city.

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