It’s hard to sum up all of the things that interest me: urban history, urban planning, public space, historic preservation, cultural landscapes… If pressed, I would say that I write about the visual practices of urban planners and the consequences of these practices for cities and the people who live in them. This seems to be an appropriately pithy elevator speech, but it leaves out so much… Perhaps, I should just summarize what has been published so far and let the work speak for itself:
“Kevin Lynch in Los Angeles: Reflections on Planning, Politics and Participation” with Tridib Banerjee (2019) Journal of the American Planning Association Vol. 84:3-4
“A Cloud Burst Erupts: Visual Rhetoric and Los Angeles’ Grand Intervention” (2016) Journal of Urban Design, Vol. 21; 6
“Cultural Acropolis” (2015) Bunker Hill in the Rearview Mirror: The Rise, Fall and Rise Again of an Urban Neighborhood. Available at Amazon
“Picturing Planning: A World Worthy of a New Yorker Cover” (2015) Journal of Architectural and Planning Research Vol. 32: 3, 199-216
“Beauty Controlled: The Persistence of City Beautiful Planning in Los Angeles” (2014) Journal of Planning History, 13(4), 296-321.
“Regulating Visual Blight”, “The City as Textbook”, “Tinker Toy Urbanism”, “The Politics Of Food And Culture”, “Planning A Great Civic Park” and “Finding Public Space on Private Beaches” (2012), Planning Los Angeles, David C. Sloane, Editor, APA Planners Press, Chicago. Available at Amazon.
“Visualizing Cities, Past and Present” (2011) Journal of Planning History, 10: May, 164-170.
I am also finally getting back to work on my book about the Los Angeles Civic Center. As part of this project, I was honored to recently receive the John Nolen Research Award from Cornell University to check out the Gordon and Brysis Whitnall archive. I’m hoping to spend a couple of weeks in Ithaca next year, learning more about one of L.A.’s earliest planners and his thoughts on the heart of the city.