Arcosanti - An Urban Laboratory in the Arizona Desert.

Arcology

January 16. 2017

Paolo Soleri, late 1960's:

THE ARCOLOGICAL COMMITMENT

* IS NOT INDISPENSABLE BECAUSE IT IS THE BEST SOLUTION TO THE SHELTERING OF AN EXPLODING POPULATION, ALTHOUGH IT IS THAT.

* IS NOT INDISPENSABLE BECAUSE IT IS THE ONLY SOLUTION TO THE ECOLOGICAL DEBACLE, ALTHOUGH IT IS THAT.

* IS NOT INDISPENSABLE BECAUSE IT IS THE ONLY REAL SOLUTION TO THE PROBLEM OF WASTE-AFFLUENCE, ALTHOUGH IT IS THAT.

* IS NOT INDISPENSABLE BECAUSE IT IS THE ONLY TRUE RESOLUTION TO THE PROBLEM OF POLLUTION, ALTHOUGH IT IS THAT.

* IS NOT INDISPENSABLE BECAUSE IT IS THE ONLY TRUE ROAD TO LAND, AIR AND WATER CONSERVATION, ALTHOUGH IT IS THAT.

* IS NOT INDISPENSABLE BECAUSE IT IS STRUCTURALLY DESEGREGATING PEOPLE, THINGS AND PERFORMANCES, ALTHOUGH IT IS THAT.

* IS NOT INDISPENSABLE BECAUSE IT IS THE BEST INSTRUMENT FOR SURVIVAL, ALTHOUGH IT IS JUST THAT.

ALL THESE ARE REMEDIAL REASONS, IMPORTANT TO MAN, BUT ONLY INSTRUMENTAL TO THE SPECIFIC HUMANENESS HE SEEKS. THEY ARE MAN-UTENTIVE AND RESTORATIVE. THEY ARE NOT SPECIFICALLY CREATIVE. BY THEIR IMPLEMENTATION, THE REFUND HEALTH OF MAN AND EARTH COULD NEVER BE A SUBSTITUTE FOR GRACE BUT ONLY A THRESHOLD TO IT.

THE ARCOLOGICAL COMMITMENT IS INDISPENSABLE BECAUSE IT ADVOCATES A PHYSICAL SYSTEM THAT JUSTLY CONSENTS AND FOSTERS THE HIGH COMPRESSION OF THINGS, ENERGIES, LOGISTICS, INFORMATION, PERFORMANCES, THINKING, DOING, LIVING, LEARNING, PLAYING, INTO URBAN-HUMAN INTEGRALS THAT ARE THE ESSENTIAL, CRITICAL, VIBRANT PHENOMENON OF LIFE AT IT'S MOST LIVELY AND COMPASSIONATE; THE STATE OF GRACE [ESTHETOGENISIS] POSSIBLE FOR A SOCIALLY AND INDIVIDUALLY HEALTHY MAN ON AN ECOLOGICALLY HEALTHY EARTH.

[photo by Alfonso Elia, the text is on many of the early workshop brochures/posters, see the Arcosanti 3 workshop poster that is available at the Arcosanti Visitors Center - Gallery]


January 23. 2012

We are delighted to announce the Cosanti Press publication of LEAN LINEAR CITY: ARTERIAL ARCOLOGY.

This compact book (7" x 7", 196 pages, fully illustrated in color) is the first full-length publication to present architect Paolo Soleri’s Lean Linear City concept, a “traveling” city that aims to optimize logistics to the extent feasible, in part by being fully integrated with its vital transportation corridor. Soleri, who is known for his theory of “arcology” (architecture + ecology), proposes this “arterial” arcology on analogy with how arteries support the essential life-functions in an organism.

The book can be purchased on our web-site with the following link LEAN LINEAR CITY: ARTERIAL ARCOLOGY.
[image: YoungSoo Kim, Tomiaki Tamura & text: Lissa McCullough]

 

Lean Linear City features pedestrian-based communities oriented around linear local and regional transportation systems, fostering quality of life through urban mobility and access, while minimizing consumption of land and material resources of all kinds, including energy resources.

Lean Linear City: Arterial Arcology outlines Soleri’s comprehensive approach to defining and controlling growth patterns of existing and future cities to produce more sustainable, equitable, and robust urban forms. The book graphically illustrates how Lean Linear’s logistics are designed to cohere, enhancing the urban experience, minimizing waste, taking advantage of passive energy opportunities, and defining “smart” boundaries in relation to surrounding agricultural and natural lands.

As urban planners face the key issues of the twenty-first century—ever expanding populations, rapid urbanization, limited global resources, increased demand for food production, and protection of a fragile environment—Soleri proposes that logistically defined “arterial” cities may prove to be a viable option for sustainable urban development.
[image: YoungSoo Kim & text: Lissa McCullough]

 

from introduction in the book:

Welcome to an important exploration of architectural and cultural thinking and design. Based on the pioneering work of Paolo Soleri, what you are about to read unfolds a collaborative new investigation of Soleri's idea for a Lean Linear City. In these pages architecture and ecology confront the vastness of the North American continent to create a complex and immanent solution for the future of the city. And this book, besides examining the design and methodology for creating an event of such enormous complexity, also describes why we must do it.

Humans want to connect: to each other, to goods, services, ideas. It is why most of us alive on the planet now live in cities: the city is the best instrument we have devised to make these connections. But we also want need to connect to nature, to the earth itself and to that bit of the earth‚s ecology we do not control. And we need to design ways to do that without overwhelming what remains of the earth‚s natural systems, habitats and landscapes.
[image: YoungSoo Kim & text: Jeff Stein]


This book describes a new parameter for design: leanness. It is based on a clear understanding of how life on earth functions. As the authors point out, because of our population numbers, because of the attitude we have taken until now about how to design and grow our cities, we are in some difficulty as a species. And we have placed every other species on the earth into some difficulty, too. A reformulated, lean design, the kind described in these pages, could very well be how we get out of it.

Architecture historian Christian Norburg Schulz points out that humans are wanderers by nature, always on the way. On the other hand, when we do settle and identify with a certain place, the result is architecture. ARTERIAL ARCOLOGY shows how we can reconcile this dichotomy of human life on earth, the dialectic of departure and return ˆ path and goal ˆ that describes our place in the world. While our current urban culture has been able to provide the civilizing comforts of buildings, possessions and literacy, it has yet to integrate these static comforts with the nomad in us, the part that is in love with movement.

To relate architecture and cities to their citizens, to an audience in motion, designers must make architecture work harder, designing buildings ˆ and cities - to be leaner, more like living things, integral parts of a living landscape, able to engage human senses beyond the mere visual. This emphasis on lean urban performance while carrying forth a new understanding of urban form characterizes the work of ARTERIAL ARCOLOGY.

This book comes to us at a watershed moment, when the very basis of culture and economy, and thus our relationship with each other and the cosmos, is being re-thought and requires re-thinking. A Japanese term for this is Hashi: the end of one thing and beginning of another. Hashi can be a bridge, chopsticks, or a book like this.

ARTERIAL ARCOLOGY, in this Hashi moment, presents some of the most important designs yet made for understanding the coming relationship of people, place and planet. I hope its publication will spark action among its readers, so that we can take our rightful place as humans on the earth, a species among many others, truly extra-ordinary in what we are becoming.

Welcome to the real work of the next generation, and to the lean, linear blueprint for how we can go about that work.

Jeff Stein AIA,
President, Cosanti Foundation
[image: YoungSoo Kim and Adam Nordfors, text: Jeff Stein]


September 21. 2011

We continue the reports from 9/12 to 9/19/2011.

The Lean Linear City provides active interconnectivity of urban environment and natural environment. Since its building foot print is contained within a 200m x 200m limit, Lean Linear City minimizes land development.

By doing so, protected land works as natural environment in the vicinity of urban environment to which inhabitants of Lean Linear City have access.

Compared to conventional city development, this proximity of nature is an advantage of the Lean Linear design. By just observing the nearby natural environment, people can experience the natural changes within urban environment, for instance, the change of seasons, Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter.

This experience of nature in movement is culminated by an urban park located in the middle of Lean Linear City as seen in the renderings. The color of the city will be following the color of trees and flowers in the urban park while different social activities could also be encouraged by each season.

This concludes this phase of reports on Paolo Soleri's LEAN LINEAR ARTERIAL ARCOLOGY.

The "Lean Linear City: Arterial Arcology" book by Paolo Soleri, in collaboration with the Arcosanti Planning Department, is scheduled to be published at the end of September.

You can view earlier reports and images of the Lean Linear City in postings
on 4/20/2005,
from 2/6 to 2/8/2006,
from 8/5/ to 8/14/2009,
from 11/27 to 12/14/2010.


[3D renderings & text: Youngsoo Kim]


September 19. 2011

This continues our report from 9/12 to 9/16/2011.

Over the past few years, Youngsoo Kim, architect in the Arcosanti Planning Department, has been working with Paolo Soleri on a series of CAD and 3D drawings/renderings for the Lean Linear City.

An enormous amount of research has been part of this effort and all of this is culminating in the upcoming publication "Lean Linear City: Arterial Arcology". This is a book by Paolo Soleri in collaboration with the Arcosanti Planning Department.

It will cover the Lean Linear City proposal by Soleri and the philosophy behind it.

Since each module represents the basic principles of Lean Linear City, following environmental and social condition of a specific site, the form of the module can vary in many ways.

For instance, as the solar angle is different in Beijing China and Phoenix Arizona, the south facing facade and form of the module needs to reflect the local population and different regional wind movement.

The model of one of the Lean Linear City modules has been completed.

You can view earlier reports and images of the Lean Linear City in postings
on 4/20/2005,
from 2/6 to 2/8/2006,
from 8/5/ to 8/14/2009,
from 11/27 to 12/14/2010.

This report concludes on Wednesday, 9/21/2011.


September 16. 2011

We continue our report from 9/12 and 9/14/2011.

The photos show part of the sequence of the Lean Linear City model building, and possibly a future construction sequence of one module of Lean Linear City.

The three masses are interconnected to each other by the Terrea level that is on the 10th floor of the module. This level functions as a public park, local transportation and utility corridor, and a structural bridge that connects each module to another.

Each module can also generate certain portion of its energy demand by utilizing solar and wind technology. On the slanted top of each mass, photovoltaic panels will be installed while the vertical structure will hold wind turbines.

Lean Linear City also provides agriculture in it's vicinity. This is represented by a sloped greenhouse that is shown on the base of the model.

You can view earlier reports of the Lean Linear City in postings
on 4/20/2005,
from 2/6 to 2/8/2006,
from 8/5/ to 8/14/2009,
from 11/27 to 12/14/2010.

This report continues on Monday, 9/19/2011.


September 14. 2011

We continue our report from Monday, 9/12/2011.

The photos show part of the sequence of the model building and possibly a future construction sequence of a module of Lean Linear City.

One module is 200m in length and width. It is articulated into three masses and each mass contains its own horizontal and vertical movement system that becomes its structural system.

As a vertical shaft structure is lifted up by crane, a building mass is simultaneously shaping as seen in the photo.

"Lean Linear City: Arterial Arcology" is a publication upcoming at the end of September, by Paolo Soleri in collaboration with the Arcosanti Planning Department. The book will cover the Lean Linear City proposal by Soleri and the philosophy behind it.

You can view earlier reports of the Lean Linear City in postings
on 4/20/2005,
from 2/6 to 2/8/2006,
from 8/5/ to 8/14/2009,
from 11/27 to 12/14/2010.

This report continues on Friday, 9/16/2011.


September 12. 2011

"Lean Linear City: Arterial Arcology"  is a publication upcoming at the end of September, by Paolo Soleri in collaboration with the Arcosanti Planning Department.

The book will cover the Lean Linear City proposal by Soleri and the philosophy behind it.

The Lean Linear City is based on a modular system. Continuous urban modules shape the linear form of Lean Linear City. Each module will afford about 3,000 people in the 200m x 200m footprint of the module.

It means population density of each module is 320 people per acre and it is three times higher than that of Manhattan, New York City: 104 people per acre.

High population density in the Lean Linear City requires a highly developed logistic system within it and it leads the form of the city to become more three dimensional.

By putting people closer and making the logistic system more three dimensional, the city can perform more efficiently and effectively in terms of marginalizing the use of the car and promoting pedestrian, bicycle and public transportation.

To represent visually this concept of high density, three dimensional form and logistic system, the Arcosanti Planning Department has built a physical model of one module of Lean Linear City. Led by planning staff Youngsoo Kim, planning intern Antonio Chelen from Santiago, Chile and Flavio Borrelli from Naples, Italy built the model.

The photos in this and the following postings show the sequence of the model building and also possible a future construction sequence of a module of Lean Linear City.


This report continues on 9/14/11.


June 04. 2010

? [image: Birdseye view of the Lean Linear City design]

We continue our report from 6/2/10 with updated renderings of the Lean Linear City.

The text consists of excerpts from "QUADERNO 9, SOLARE: LEAN "LINEAR CITY" written by Paolo Soleri, 2005.

"The variations available for the single module (200 meters in length) to “clone” itself are unlimited, given the ingenuity and the resolve of the planners, designers, and populations involved.
Three major points:
[1] Food and habitat are mandatory (necessities), a priority, and a universal imperative.
[2] A continent as populated as China at the edge of hyper-consumerism cannot afford to engulf its farmland in parkways, highways, roads, parking lots, garages, and dumpsites.
These are consequences of the unchecked metastasis of the city into suburbia and exurbia.
[3] A child separated from nature, as even the most opulent exurbia imposes, will be a flawed persona."


? [image: Birdseye view of the Lean Linear City design, space between the city ribbons]

"According to the preliminary data, each “module” of the city, measuring 200 meters in length, accommodates about 2,000 residents and the spaces for productive, commercial, institutional, cultural, recreational, and health activities.
Each module is able to harvest a percentage of its energy needs on the spot, in addition to the staple harvests such as fruits and vegetables.
In SOLARE, auxiliary to the family’s windowsill pot for herbs and tomatoes, are the greenhouse aprons on the southerly elevation and the terraced orchards on the northerly elevation.
The most promising effect of the lean urban ribbon is a network of logistically distributed habitats capable, in time, of cleansing the land by substantially reducing an enormous fossil fuel dependence, thus restoring ecosystems and enriching the life of the countryside now under the threat of endless sprawl (the City of Phoenix Syndrome).
In addition, each module of the Lean Linear City (LLC) could define its proper characteristics: products, facilities, ethnicities, health, technologies, fashion, cuisine, and conviviality aligned sequentially along regional and continental routes."


? [image: The space between the two Lean Linear City ribbons]

"If SOLARE’s modules, with well-lubricated logistics, traverse diverse ethnicities, in a few minutes one could arrive at different urban, civic, and cultural experiences, analogous to organisms whose blood carries vital load to heart, brain, lungs, liver, eros organs, etc.
Such an astonishing line up of provinces is only conceivable with a highly efficient and swift logistical support.
Once the provinces are splintered from common logistics, what remains are civic asphyxiation, societal paralysis, starvation, and death."


? [image: The space between the two Lean Linear City ribbons]

"In SOLARE, five minutes on the train plus a five-minute walk takes you where you choose or need to be (daily cycles).
In five minutes on the train you could traverse ten “mini provinces” (modules), each with its own distinct flavor, akin to New York’s ethnic neighborhoods.
The modular characteristics could not be mandated; rather they would have to come about as SOLARE started to click as a lean, continuous human habitat.
Even though a single module of SOLARE (2,000 residents) is a relatively modest urban enterprise, a fully developed lean urban ribbon (tens or hundreds of kilometers), in addition to its planning, would be able to employ a very, very large, skilled, and varied labor pool for many years."

This completes this sequence of reports about the Lean Linear City.

Previous reports on the LEAN LINEAR CITY can be viewed on 4/20/05, 2/6 – 2/8/06, 8/5 – 8/14/09, 11/27 – 12/14/09.

The complete text is available in QUADERNO 9 - SOLARE The Lean Linear City.
The Quaderno is available in the Visitors Center - Galleries at Cosanti and Arcosanti, as well as on our web-site on-line store.


June 02. 2010

? [image: Birdseye view of the Lean Linear City design with dam]

We continue our report from 5/31/10 with updated renderings of the Lean Linear City.

The text consists of excerpts from "QUADERNO 9, SOLARE: LEAN "LINEAR CITY" written by Paolo Soleri, 2005.

"The triumphal technological march of Homo faber is overloading the poorly designed “arterial and venous” networks we naïvely have embraced. The suburban logistical network is sclerotic, and worse, doomed. In order to remain marginally viable, the life of the “organism” becomes grotesque.
An aerial view of exurban diaspora evidences that grotesque, monotonous, shallow, delusional life. It is un-civil-ized, i.e., deprived of civitas (the city), but serves well the production, consumption, segregation, waste, and pollution cycles of raw capitalism.
The survival of the fittest is its rule, while its very livelihood rests in the obscurantism of materialism."


? [image: Birdseye view of the Lean Linear City design, energy apron on the south side of the city]

"At the same time there is an alternative to the crude instauration of very large urban systems indifferent, in fact hostile, to that same “loving nature” we hypocritically herald.
We belong to the planet, we have been shaped for eons by it, and its basic indifference toward life’s evolution is plain to see.
Even the sun, source and first resource of life, is nothing more that a super hot, gaseous mass, the most apt god to idolize if we are so inclined."


? [image: Birdseye view of the Lean Linear City design, major node]

"But our indifference toward the sun and its climatic rage taxes our fragile presence.
How to best harness a fraction of the sun’s energy, now that fossil fuels are beginning to show signs of exhaustion,
is essential
to the structural and functional morphology of the proposed urban ribbon.
Its predisposition toward a clean and lean nature includes harvesting solar energy on the spot and paying attention to the logistics of contemporary consumers."


? [image: Birdseye view of the Lean Linear City design, modules]

"We have been de-coupling the urban from the logistical (transportation) and as long as we stay in hyper-consumption mode and persist in automobile supremacy, the conflict has no solution.
It is a simple fact of physics (transportation) and hyper-physics (the Urban Effect).
The Lean Linear City channels both the physical and the hyper-physical (civilization-culture) presence in self-contained complexes and intense urban ribbons capable of lining the continent in the leanest possible mode."

The third and last report of this series about the Lean Linear City will be posted on 6/4/2010.


May 31. 2010

? [image: The Lean Linear City. designed by Paolo Soleri, 3D rendering by Young Soo Kim.
A postcard of this image is now available at the Cosanti and Arcosanti Visitors Centers].

Previous reports on the LEAN LINEAR CITY can be viewed on 4/20/05, 2/6 – 2/8/06, 8/5 – 8/14/09, 11/27 – 12/14/09. This updated and recently completed series of new 3D images will be in this weeks reports, 5/31 – 6/4/10.


? [image: The Lean Linear City proposal, as shown at the Beijing Center of the Arts exhibition during the exhibition 3 DIMENSIONAL CITY – FUTURE CHINA, Nov. 2009 – Feb. 2010]

The text throughout these three reports consists of excerpts from "QUADERNO 9, SOLARE: LEAN LINEAR CITY", written by Paolo Soleri, 2005.

"SOLARE proposes a continuous urban ribbon, designed to intercept wind patterns of the region. It will also be sensitized to the sun’s radiation, both photovoltaic and greenhouse. Thus, energy-wise it is best suited for breezy and sunny regions."


? [image: The Lean Linear City proposal, seen here as an extension from an existing city]

"Briefly stated, its main characteristics are:

A series of continuous sub-ribbons extend as the Lean Linear City develops with time:

[A] Two main parallel structures of thirty or more stories extending several kilometers to hundreds of kilometers.
[B] A climate-controlled volume constituting the inner park defined by the two structures delineated above, featuring greenhouse in winter and parasol in summer.
[C] Two wind generator continua
[D] Two photovoltaic continua
[E] One greenhouse apron continuum
[F] One orchard apron continuum
[G] Several logistical bands for local, regional, and continental trains (rail and maglev)
[H] Moving walkways, shuttles, and “fast down and out” slides at appropriate locations
[I] One water “stream” for the needs of residents and travelers and for recreation.
[J] Two delivery and pick up networks
[K] Two liquid and solid waste networks."


? [image: View of the Lean Linear City proposal with the two linear ribbons connected to a major node]

"Following nature’s example, the design and display of the lean urban ribbon connects existing large and small habitats and helps salvage the land from diaspora while in a sustainable fashion reducing waste, pollution, and social and cultural impoverishment.
At the lower ends of the greenhouse aprons the short skirt of suburbia develops. The ballerina, the orchestra, and the spectators know the skirt must be a tutu; the shorter it is, the better it allows nature’s grace into its brief proximity.
Rigorously contained suburban spread could develop on a fascia no wider than one kilometer, so as to accommodate travel by public transportation, bicycle, and foot. The private automobile would be rigorously confined to auxiliary functions (outings, research, etc.)."


? [image: In the foreground we see NUDGING SPACE Arcology with the Lean Linear City in the background]

"One thing we should label correctly is time pollution, i.e., the daily waste of time due to moving things and people from here to there.
The time wasted commuting, for instance, is one of the main time pollutions of affluence and hyper-consumption. Motion implies energy spent, thus commuting is a double slam of time pollution and energy waste, and also threatens the physical and biological well-being of moving organisms.
It offers a less than rosy picture of Homo sapiens as “controller of its own destiny.”

This report continues on 6/2/10.