Click here to download

Redeeming the shopping center. Victor Gruen’s ideal cellular metropolis and Louvain-la-Neuve
Journal Title: TERRITORIO 
Author/s: Leonardo Zuccaro Marchi 
Year:  2021 Issue: 96 Language: English 
Pages:  15 Pg. 159-173 FullText PDF:  1499 KB
DOI:  10.3280/TR2021-096015
(DOI is like a bar code for intellectual property: to have more infomation:  clicca qui   and here 

The ‘mall maker’ Victor Gruen is well known as the architect who played a dominant role in the design and global proliferation of the shopping mall. While many recent publications already highlighted and re-evaluated the architectural importance of Gruen’s shopping center, the urban ideal/utopian projects proposed by Gruen have not been considered in depth thus far. Gruen mixed his design principles for shopping centers with ecological interpretations, proposing the Cellular Metropolis as a new urban utopia. This paper aims to shed light on Gruen’s urban ideas, from his critical idea of the ecological-commercial realm to the study of radical commercial hybridizations, which are still relevant lessons for the design of our socio-spatial contemporary condition. In particular, the article focuses on the case study of Louvain-la-Neuve to ground such ideas into a real site.
Keywords: Victor Gruen; cellular metropolis; Louvainla- Neuve

  1. Howard E., 1965, Garden Cities of To-Morrow, edited by F.J. Osborn. Great Britain: Faber and Faber Ltd.
  2. Jacobs J., 1961, The death and life of great American Cities. New York: Random House.
  3. Victor Gruen Foundation for Environmental Planning, 1973, «Die Charta von Wien. Zentren als Urbane Brennpunke». tu Wien Library, 2601G, 441.540 I.
  4. Gruen V., Urbanisme et Architecture s.a., October 1969, «Commercial Study», Draft report. Louvain-la-Neuve Archive, Dossier 15.
  5. Gruen V., Victor Gruen Associates, July 30, 1955 - July 23, 1956, ‘1976’ ahcvgc box 15.
  6. Published Sources Avermaete T., 2005, «Mat-building. Team 10’s reinvention of the critical capacity of the urban tissue». In: Risselada M., van den Heuvel D., 2005 (eds.), Team 10, In search of a Utopia of the past, 1953-’81. Rotterdam: nai Publisher.
  7. Ballard J.C., 2006 (reprint 2014), Kingdom Come. London: Fourth Estate.
  8. Bell G., Tyrwhitt J., 1972, eds., Human Identity in the Urban Environment. London: Penguin Books.
  9. Blondel V., 2020, «Edito». lieuxdits #19.
  10. Crawford M., 1992, «The World in a Shopping Mall». In: Sorkin M., Variations on a theme park. The American city and the end of the public space. New York: Hill and Wang.
  11. Fishman R., 1987, Bourgeois utopias: The rise and fall of suburbia. New York: Basic Books.
  12. Giedion S., 1958, Architecture You and Me. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.
  13. Giedion S., 1952, «Historical Background to the Core». In: Rogers E.N., Sert J.L., Tyrwhitt J. (eds.), The Heart of the City: Towards the humanization of Urban life. New York: Pellegrini and Cudahy.
  14. Giedion S., 1971, Architecture and the Phenomena of Transition, the three space conceptions in Architecture. Cambridge: Harvard University press.
  15. Gosseye J., Avermaete T., 2018, eds., Acculturating the Shopping Centre. London: Routledge.
  16. Gruen V., 1955, Cityscape and Landscape. Experts from a speech recently given at the International Conference of Design in Aspen, Colorado.
  17. Gruen V., 1955, «Downtown Needs a Lesson from the Suburbs». Business Week, 22 October.
  18. Gruen V., 1956, «How to Handle This Chaos of Congestion, This Anarchy of Scatteration». Architectural Forum, civ.
  19. Gruen V., Smith L., 1960, Shopping Town usa. New York: Reinhold Publishing.
  20. Gruen V., 1964, The Heart of Our Cities - The Urban Crisis Diagnosis and Cure. London: Thames and Hudson.
  21. Gruen V., 1973, Centres for the Urban Environment. Survival of the Cities. New York: V.N.R. Company.
  22. Gutheim F., 1959, «Washington planning problems: from L’Enfant to Gruen». Progressive Architecture, December: 82-86.
  23. Hardwick M.J., 2004, Mall Maker - Victor Gruen, Architect of an American Dream. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press.
  24. Laconte P., 2020, «La ville universitaire de Louvain-la-Neuve: Un projet d’urbanisme pour le xxie siècle. Introduction aux panneaux portant sur Louvain-la-Neuve, présentés à l’Exposition sur la ville durable au xxie siècle (Berlin, 5.9-22.11.2020)». lieuxdits #19: 10-27.
  25. Lemaire R.M., 1977, «Louvain-la-neuve, introduction». Ac: Revue internationale d’amiante-ciment, 86.
  26. Mennel T., 2004, «Victor Gruen and the Construction of Cold War Utopias ». Journal of Planning History, 3: 116-150. (accessed: 2014)., DOI: 10.1177/1538513204264755
  27. Meuwissen E., 2005 «L’Esplanade ouvre ses portes». Le, 6 Octobre. -- html (accessed: 2012.03.20).
  28. Mumford L., 1965, «The Garden City Idea and Modern Planning». In: Howard (1965), cit. Paci E., 1954, «Il cuore della città». Casabella Continuità, 202: vii-x.
  29. Smiley D., 2013, Pedestrian Modern. Shopping and American Architecture, 1925 – 1956. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.
  30. Smithson A. and P., Chung J.C., 2005, eds., The charged Void: Urbanism. usa: The Monacelli Press.
  31. Wall A., 2005, Victor Gruen - From Urban Shop to New City. Barcelona: Actar.
  32. Zuccaro Marchi L., 2017, «Victor Gruen: the environmental Heart», The Journal of Public Space, 2, 2: 75-84.
  33. Zuccaro Marchi L., 2018, The Heart of the City. Legacy and Complexity of a Modern Design Idea. London: Routledge.

Leonardo Zuccaro Marchi, in "TERRITORIO" 96/2021, pp. 159-173, DOI:10.3280/TR2021-096015


FrancoAngeli is a member of Publishers International Linking Association a not for profit orgasnization wich runs the CrossRef service, enabing links to and from online scholarly content