Asphalt Nation: How the Automobile Took Over America, and how We Can Take it Back

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University of California Press, 1997 - History - 418 pages
2 Reviews
Asphalt Nation is a powerful examination of how the automobile has ravaged America's cities and landscape over the past 100 years together with a compelling strategy for reversing our automobile dependency. Jane Holtz Kay provides a history of the rapid spread of the automobile and documents the huge subsidies commanded by the highway lobby, to the detriment of once-efficient forms of mass transportation. Demonstrating that there are economic, political, architectural, and personal solutions to the problem, she shows that radical change is entirely possible. This book is essential reading for everyone interested in the history of our relationship with the car, and in the prospect of returning to a world of human mobility.
 

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User Review  - bkinetic - LibraryThing

This book uncovers the ugly side of car culture: Harmful environmental effects, destruction of walkable and bike-friendly communities, high taxes required to maintain the enormous roadway ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - quantum_flapdoodle - LibraryThing

A classic exploration of the car culture; the author proposes that the car culture has taken over America, and that we can take it back. Very well done book. Read full review

Contents

A Defining Decade
2
A Nation in Lifelock 1 Bumper to Bumper
13
The Geography of Inequity
35
The Landscape of the Exit Ramp
55
The Road to Environmental Ruin
79
Harm to Health and Breath
101
The Cost of the Car Culture
115
The Machine That Made the Land 7 Model T Model City
141
Braking the Juggernaut
247
The ThreeCar Culture
269
From Dead End to Exit 13 None for the Road
285
Zoning for Life
295
Putting Transit on Track
303
The Centering of America
323
Righting the Price
345
NOTES
359

From Front Porch to Front Seat
169
Driving Through the Depression
195
The Asphalt Exodus
221

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About the author (1997)

Jane Holtz Kay is the architecture and planning critic for The Nation and the author of Lost Boston (1980) and Preserving New England (1986).

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