My Kind of City: Collected Essays of Hank Dittmar

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Island Press
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6.1 X 0.7 X 9.1 inches | 1.25 pounds
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About the Author

Hank Dittmar (1956-2018) was the founding principal of Hank Dittmar Associates, an international urban planning firm. Before that, he was chief executive of The Prince's Foundation for Building Community, founding president and CEO of Reconnecting America, and executive director of the Surface Transportation Policy Partnership. His long, varied career included service as a regional planner, airport director, policy advisor, and outreach worker with street gangs in Chicago. He published extensively on planning, urban design, and architecture.

"Hank Dittmar said that Christopher Alexander changed his life. I'm happy to say that Hank changed mine. It's hard to describe how enriching it was to work alongside such an insightful leader and observer of our built environment. Fortunately, for future generations of urbanists My Kind of City reveals some of Hank's finest thinking, especially the ways in which he delighted in the complex interactions between people, culture, design, and place."--Don Chen, President, Surdna Foundation
"This book of essays is a joy to read. Hank's writing is smart without being elitist, witty and poetic, succinct and often surprising. Hank's approach to life--and to cities--was to embrace the 'messy'--a word he uses to good effect in key passages in this book. As he notes in the opening section (a series of love letters to complicated places), cities are 'hard to plan, easy to ruin, yet surprisingly adaptable and resilient.'"--Adapted from the preface by Lynn Richards, President and CEO, Congress for the New Urbanism
"Hank shows a rare sensibility within his profession: He has obviously been much moved by beauty. In these essays, he has contributed to the emerging belief that there are certain aesthetic constants across culture, time, and class, and that these can be objectively apprehended and taught."--From the foreword by Andres Duany, Partner, DPZ Partners