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Books > Arts & Photography > Architecture > 0231159900
  1. The Greatest Grid: The Master Plan of Manhattan, 1811-2011
    The Greatest Grid: The Master Plan of Manhattan, 1811-2011
    The Greatest Grid: The Master Plan of Manhattan, 1811-2011
    The Greatest Grid: The Master Plan of Manhattan, 1811-2011
    Image(s) provided for illustrative purposes and may differ from the actual product
  2. The Greatest Grid: The Master Plan of Manhattan, 1811-2011

    Delivery: 10-20 Working Days
    Customer Ratings (18 reviews)
    Price R1355.00

Additional Information

Laying out Manhattan's street grid and providing a rationale for the growth of New York was the city's first great civic enterprise, not to mention a brazenly ambitious project and major milestone in the history of city planning. The grid created the physical conditions for business and society to flourish and embodied the drive and discipline for which the city would come to be known. Published to coincide with an exhibition at the Museum of the City of New York celebrating the bicentennial of the Commissioners' 1811 Plan of Manhattan, this volume does more than memorialize such a visionary effort, it serves as an enduring reference full of rare images and information.

The Greatest Grid shares the history of the Commissioners' plan, incorporating archival photos and illustrations, primary documents and testimony, and magnificent maps with essential analysis. The text, written by leading historians of New York City, follows the grid's initial design, implementation, and evolution, and then speaks to its enduring influence. A foldout map, accompanied by explanatory notes, reproduces the Commissioners' original plan, and additional maps and prints chart the city's pre-1811 irregular growth patterns and local precedent for the grid's design. Constituting the first sustained examination of this subject, this text describes the social, political, and intellectual figures who were instrumental in remaking early New York, not in the image of old Europe but as a reflection of other American cities and a distinct New World sensibility. The grid reaffirmed old hierarchies while creating new opportunities for power and advancement, giving rise to the multicultural, highly networked landscape New Yorkers thrive in today.

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Columbia University Press
Columbia University Press
Columbia University Press
200 illus; gatefold
200 illus; gatefold
Columbia University Press
Columbia University Press
Most Helpful Customer Reviews

This book is fascinating for anybody interested in the history of New York, or in city planning in general. It tells the story of New York's revolutionary grid system, interesting especially because the Manhattan grid utilizes every spot on the island of Manhattan above the already built-up city. It displays over 200 historic documents, maps, paintings, drawings and photographs, showing the northward progression of the grid over the years. It also tells in detail about the criticism of the grid system over the years, and does not shy away from revealing its shortcomings, e.g., the lack of parks in the original plan. Moreover, it tells in detail about the changes made to the grid during various periods, such as the laying out of New York's many gorgeous parks, the addition of several avenues on the East Side, and the "super-blocks" - blocks enlarged due to the elimination of stretches of streets and avenues. Finally, it gives the details of the expansion of a variant of the... Read more
Actually, we sent this latest copy to friends that spend time in NYC on a regular basis. Our personal copy remains out for view in our Living Room.
It is simply the best book, by far, about the physical history of Manhattan - what was here (we live in NYC) in the beginning, how Manhattan's famous grid plan was developed, its overt social planning goals, and the amazing skill and determination of the New Yorkers who made it a reality. It really is quite a story.
That story is laid out in concise two-page sections for the most part: graphics, plans and photographs that document a particular topic accompanied by an essay written by an expert in the field. The layout and reproduction quality is of the highest order.
Overall, it is quite an achievement.
Great book, gets readers to reimagine what New York City could have looked like. The history of the grid, took me back to the 1800's where Manhattan was a Dutch colony, than to when it became like the Irvine Ranch with development projects all over.
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