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bartholomew_1953

bartholomew_1953

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Published by RaymondWatts
Urban Planner Harland Bartholomew speaks on St. Louis' Immediate and Long Rang Plans for Traffic Problems in the Gateway City.
Urban Planner Harland Bartholomew speaks on St. Louis' Immediate and Long Rang Plans for Traffic Problems in the Gateway City.

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Published by: RaymondWatts on Oct 13, 2011
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10/13/2011

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r 
'./ 
IMMEDIATE
AND
LONG
RANGE
PLANS
tor
ST.
LOUIS
TRAFnC
PROBLEMS
(Remarks
at
meeting
of
Greater
St.
Louis
Retail
Controllers
Group)
ForeetPark
Hotel
I
)
By
HARLAND BARTHOLOMEW
Consulting
Engineer
St.
Louis,
Missouri
April
14,
1953
 
, 
INTRODUCTION 
When
Henry Ford
and
his
contemporariesdeveloped
the
high
speed,
low-priced
automobile
probably
nobody
realized
that
the
result
would be a
profound
transformation
of
the
form and
character
of
the
American
city
accompanied
by extreme
social
changes
infamily
life
and
in the
whole
pattern of
urban
living
conditions.
Even
todsy
we
are
uncertain of
theultimate
result
of
this
transformation
which
is
still
taking place.
The
relatively
small,
compactly
built
city
of
1920
has
undergone a
potential
1000
percent
change
in
its
physical
area
with
but
only
about
100
percent
increase
in
total
population. Instead
of
a
city
embraced by
definite
corporateboundaries,
a
generally
well-known,
well-understood
and
reasonably
well-controlled
unified
commun1ty
having
essentially
basic
unity,
we
now
have a
vast,
sprawling,
disorganized
milieu,
almost
hopelessly
split
up
into
a
multi
plicity
of
governmental
units,
lacking
in
planned
direction
andeconomic
unity.
Decentralization
Process
The
low-priced,
high-speed
car
was
rirst
produced
in
considerable
numbers
close
to
the
beginning
or the
great
de
preSSion
or
the
early
1930's.
While some
decentralizationof
the
American
city
began
about
that
time,
its
rapid
progress
was
impaired
by
the lag in
production of automobiles
caused by
thedepression
and
the
slow
recovery,
rollowed
by
curtailments
imposed
by
liorld
War
II.
The
pace
ofdecentralization
has
been
accelerating
in
thepast rive
years.
We
can
expect conSiderable
 
further
decentralization
because
the
federal
government,by
very
nearly
preenpting
the
nortgage
field
through
its
FHA
insurance
program
insures
vast
housing
projects
in
far
flung
suburban
areas
with
often
a
thousand
or
more
living
units
of
multiple
dwellings
as
well
as
single
family
homes,
unless
this
program
is
modified.
The
FHA
insures
few
residential
loans
in
the
large
central
cities.
New
suburban
commercial
centers,
costing
anywhere
fron
~lO,OOO,OOO
to
t50,OOO,OOO
each,
with
vast
auto
mobile
parking
facilities,
now
pose
a
threat
to
millions
of
dollars
of
property
v~lues
in
central
business
districts
uponwhose
assessed
valuations
and
stability
large
city
governments
are
dependent.
Yet
the
traffic
problems
are
growing
constantly
more
serious
in
both the
central
cities
aswell
as
in
the
suburban
areas.
Growth
and
change
are
inevitable
in
a dynamic
situation
such
as
thiS,
but
inevitably
the
question
arises
whether
the
changes
that
are
taking
place
represent
a
progressive
improvement
in
conditions.
It
is
all
too apparent
that
we
are
confronted
With
far
rr.ore
serious
difficulties
than
we
have
yet
contemplated.
Over-all
Planning
and
Control
If
the
present
flood
of automobiles
had
occurred
suddenly,
our
American
cities
probably
would
have
bestirred
themselves
to
envision
the
full
significance
of
so
marked a
transformation
from
horse
and
buggy comrr.unities
to
cities
of
the
motor
age.
The
e~ergency
would
have
been
so
great
as
to
inspire
bold
plans
and
courageous
action.
A
full
realization
of
the
changed
situation
confronting
cities
today has
been
obscured
due
to
theprotracted,
gradual
transition.
This has
dulled
our
vision
and
-2

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