Author(s): Garth Falconer
How can we develop better urban environments for New Zealanders? Is it a straightforward matter of better planning and applying more resources? Do we have to settle for second best? What of the lessons learned from those who have come before us? In this first book on the contradictions and paradoxes of the design of New Zealand's urban places, Garth Falconer suggests that these are exciting times to be thinking about such issues. With better understanding of our unique context, together with broad collaboration across all sectors and a commitment to creative, resourceful action, there are alternatives to accepting soaring house prices, congested traffic, a bland and illegible urban landscape, growing gaps between different peoples, and hopelessly complicated urban planning regulations. Living in Paradox explores the dynamic and intriguing story of this young, vigorous and intriguingly complex country. It is an optimistic, far-reaching book which documents the rich history of earlier visions, analyses many of the various trials and pitfalls of the past, and paints an engaging picture of the way things could be in New Zealand's towns and cities.
Garth Falconer is a practising landscape architect and urban designer based in Auckland. Born in the small town of Gore at the bottom of the South Island, he joined the drift north at age ten, moving to Hamilton. Rather than choosing regular career-orientated tertiary studies, he first gained a BA in geography and sociology at Auckland University before by chance happening upon landscape architecture. Completing post-graduate landscape architecture at Lincoln outside Christchurch and faced with few job prospects, he worked in San Francisco for Peter Walker and Martha Schwartz, then in 1988 formed Isthmus Group along with three other graduates in a converted garage in Auckland. It grew to be a leading practice nationwide. In 2003 Garth took a sabbatical, completing a Masters in Urban Design at Oxford Brookes University in the UK. Looking for more challenges, Garth left Isthmus in 2008 to form a smaller practice, Reset Urban Design, based in central Auckland, which is involved in a widening range of stimulating projects and initiatives around the country. Garth is known for his design leadership of collaborative multi- disciplinary teams creating strong public-realm projects from large scale to the delivery of close detail. Garth lives with his family near Leigh on Auckland's splendid east coast and enjoys surfing, indulging in travel, exploring art and continuing to learn. www.reseturban.co.nz
Foreword 7; Introduction 9; 01 Lies on the Land 25; 02 Getting Connected 55; 03 Dreams at a Distance 97; 04 A Swathe of Suburbs 139; 05 Palisades and Picket Fences 165; 06 The Last Great Maori Migration 203; 07 The Quest for an Urban Identity 235; 08 Three Curious Cities: Christchurch, Auckland, Hamilton 265; 09 Shakers and Movers 297; 10 Shapers and Interventionists 331; 11 Sustainability: Constructing a Clean and Green Urban New Zealand 377; 12 Christchurch: Response and Opportunities 411; 13 Auckland: Endless Growth? 449; Endnotes 487; Acknowledgements 502; References 503; Index 511