Urbanwords: the website of The Dictionary of Urbanism





30 October

Goad map 1
A large-scale plan of the business centre of a town identifying individual retail and business units. 2 A map created by the Charles E Goad Company.

Goad, Charles E (d1910) Mapmaker and civil engineer. Goad established his map-making company in Montreal, Canada, in 1875, specialising in detailed street maps for the inner areas of cities, particular for fire insurance companies. The company was later active in Toronto, Ontario and London. Goad's maps cover the industrial areas of more than 100 towns and cities in the UK.

obliging urban design
(obliging being an adjective) Urban design that is supportive of a wide variety of people's interests.

nanoarchitecture Buildings of the future whose structures, made of molecules programmed to replicate themselves, will be based on the coding properties of DNA. The theory has been developed by the American architect John M Johansen.

Northern Supercity Coast-to-Coast A conurbation or megalopolis in the form of a 30-kilometre strip stretching from Liverpool to Hull in the north of England, proposed in 2004 by the architect Will Alsop.

20 October

brown town A place where heroin is widely used, so called after the colour of the powder.

city of light 1 Paris. 2 Lyons, which has carried out a programme of lighting buildings in the city centre and promoting the lighting design industry. 3 An animated model of New York displayed in the Consolidated Edison building at the New York World's Fair 1939. Designed by Walter Dorwin Teague, the exhibit showed the contribution that electricity, gas and steam played in the city's life.

city of parks Surrey, British Columbia, Canada.

Londonographer One who writes about London.

Streets of London Probably the song most commonly performed by street buskers in the UK. It was written and performed by Ralph McTell in 1974.

14 October

City Different
(also the different city) Santa Fe, New Mexico, so called because it is significantly different from other US cities (see the city of three cultures). The city was named La Villa de Santa Fe (City of the Holy Faith) in the early seventeenth century.

city of three cultures 1 Santa Fe, New Mexico. The three cultures are identified as Indian, Hispanic and Anglo, though in fact there are many more. People from other cultures, such as African Americans, are classified as Anglos, it is said, because the other two cultures got there first. 2 Balaguer in Catalonia, Spain.

Plaza of Three Cultures Completed in 1964, the plaza in Mexico City is surrounded by Aztec, Spanish and modern Mestizo (people of mixed ancestry) buildings and ruins.

development management The term proposed in 2004 by the Royal Town Planning Institute as a more positive-sounding replacement for development control.

peeps (US) People, particularly the people of a neighbourhood.

quartermaster A person employed to patrol an urban quarter. The US term was used in the UK in 2004 in relation to proposals to redevelop part of Liverpool city centre.

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illustration from the Dictionary of Urbanism
A city’s greatness is the result of an uneasy balance between order and energy.
Donald L Miller