The next instalment of the 2011 Utzon Lecture Series will be held on Wednesday the 15th of June in the Keith Burrows theatre at 7pm. The lecture is titled “Vertical Density” and will be given by Carol Willis, Adjunct Associate Professor of Urban Studies at Columbia University.
The lecture will explore the different ways to conceptualize urban density: in the ground plane and in the skyline. The world's densest major cities are Hong Kong, Mumbai, and Dhaka which are wildly disparate models of urban development in the vertical and horizontal dimensions. New York’'s density concentrates in Manhattan, where residents number 71,000 per square mile. Using the historical model of New York City and its high-rise zoning regulation, the talk will examine how development pressures, public policy, and urban cultures shape buildings and cities.
Further, the talk will consider the correlations of density with affluence–as in Manhattan and Hong Kong–and with poverty. Preferring the density of affluence, the talk asks: Is vertical density a product of rampant capitalist markets, of particular cultures, or can it be planned? Is it a positive goal for cities old and new?
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