Accidental City: The Transformation of Toronto

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Houghton Mifflin Company, 1996 - Architecture - 225 pages
Toronto is one of the world's great cities and the commercial and cultural capital of English-speaking Canada. But it is also a classic example of a modern city that has sustained and withstood every kind of urban force. Robert Fulford, in this compelling book, recounts the exciting story of the postwar transformation of an aging city. In the 1950s Toronto was a gray lady - "a good place to mind your own business", as Northrop Frye said. Built in a strange and challenging ravine-threaded landscape on the shore of Lake Ontario by generations of architects, the city is now the home of the Canadian National Tower, of an extraordinary subway system, of the Blue Jays and their SkyDome, of the Royal Ontario Museum. Today Toronto bristles with vitality, glitters with every fascination that architecture, planning, and cultural and intellectual life can give to a city. It has fallen into many of the characteristic mistakes of modern urban planning, yet it has also saved itself from the worst of them. This graceful narrative, moving from one part of Toronto to another, paints a portrait of the city, its recent history, its urban planning, and its economic growth.

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