British New Towns through compared examples. Three examples: Harlow, Thamesmead and Milton Keynes

Autores UPV
CONGRESO British New Towns through compared examples. Three examples: Harlow, Thamesmead and Milton Keynes


Great Britain has always been a pioneer in the field of urban planning during key stages in its history, the Garden City (in the early twentieth century) and the New Towns (once the WW2 was finished) are two models that have been decisive in our urban culture, besides having been used with a great profusion internationally. The influence that throughout the twentieth century the development of the Modern Movement had, is another determining factor of the course of the mentioned models and their commitment with these new resources in the architectural and urban settings. The experiences of Harlow, Milton Keynes and Thamesmead shed light on these and other topics of interest for future developments. By deepening into aspects as their instrumental and compositional definition, their own urban development and programmatic aims, the shapes of each settlement and its relationship with the territory, their urban structure, their compositional units, the paper and settings of the civic centres, their architectural typologies and the landscape treatments, allows us to make a compared diagnosis of these experiences and of some data which demonstrates the compliance of their aims and how they have evolved, their current situation and their future expectations. It is about making a current reading of them in terms of the greater or lesser implications of their ideologies and their possible influence on the challenges that the urban planning and design is facing nowadays. The New Towns are an alternative to the sprawl of large cities and avoid a dispersed growth on the territory, a problem still to be resolved and inherited from the last decades in Europe. The recommendations for a sustainable development advocates not to occupy the greenfield, but also defends the compact city in a precise location with a certain territorial autonomy.