Ebenezer Howard

It is said that there were two major inventions in the beginning of the twentieth century; the invention of the airplane, and Ebenezer Howards’ creation of the Garden City. In the 19th century, as a response to extremes of the capitalist order and an alternative to the industrial city, communitarian activity started to search new forms of community. Ebenezer Howard cropped up a new type of human settlement which is more rational for an industrial age, The Garden City. It was a new form of social and economic collaboration with a control and order.
Howard aimed to reverse the congestion and spread of the large city through new form of planned community. To build a garden city, Howard needed money to buy land. He decided to get funding from “gentlemen of responsible position and undoubted probity and honor”. He founded the Garden City Association in 1899, although it took forty years to win a serious consideration from the government. By 1945, government noticed the problems of some form of planning and it was the Howard’s contribution to modify a nonconformist vision of community developed in nineteenth century reform circles.
The most significant thing is that Howard’s utopian thinking was the transitional figure which connected 19th century reformers to 20th century professional planners. Ebenezer Howard had a better vision for town community life to end the congestion in English cities to build self sufficient colonies in agricultural land. He knew that larger cities didn’t create large communities but created alienated lonely separate people whom lacked the sense of a community. According to Howard’s aspect Garden City was the key to bring man to a natural order that would further the social associations necessary for individual fulfillment.

In the late 1880’s it all started with the Howard’s “alluring dream of co-operative commonwealth that would end social discord”. With the inspiration he gained from the Edward Bellamy’s Looking Backward, he started working on technocratic-socialist utopia. By the early 1890’s Howard started to contact with two groups who were interested in starting colonies. This idea of colonies was first mentioned in Alfred Marshall’s article. He urged that in order to relieve the unemployment and congestion of London’s slums, colonies of factory workers should be placed on agricultural land out of the core.
For Howard, the crowded city was the reason that communities can’t survive and the reason for that is the size. So he proposed a communal settlement with a population 32. 000 of to maintain the idea of a community. In his books’s first chapter he formuliazed the ideal city. 6000 acres of cheap rural land are to be purchased, 1000 of which are reserved for the city. A 32,000 person population cap is set, after which a new city will have to be colonized. As far as the design goes, Howard wants to make it as little like the overcrowded London of his day as possible, so public parks and private lawns are everywhere.
The roads are incredibly wide, ranging from 120 to 420 feet for the Grand Avenue, and they are radial rather than linear. Commercial, industrial, residential, and public uses are clearly differentiated from each other spatially. With the foundation of The Land Nationalization Society, by Alfred Wallace, the idea of creating labor colonies outside cities to reduce redundancy of joblessness in the urban centers occurred. At one of the meetings of this Society, Howard proposed the formation of a “Co-operative Commonwealth”, which was described as the subject of a good deal of discussion in recent months in advanced circles.
This scheme was supposed to eliminate the landlord and there would be experiments of capitalism. According to Howard’s beliefs Garden City, including the colony systems, was the practical answers to planning problems and should have attracted the majority of the public to start the community. Despite his thoughts, many writers found his ideas ridiculous with the belief of “towns are not created; they grow” In spite of all the negative feedbacks, The Land Nationalization Society remained important in Howard’s efforts to create a Garden City Association in 1899.
For the first years of Associations, it was all about propaganda rather than action. With the lectures, interviews, and tracts Howard’s ideology became widespread and started to be considered as practical and successful. Within few months many council members, engineers, businessmen, architects had joined the Association. Between 1900 and 1901, membership number rose to 500. However, there was no donation enough to buy an estate and place factories. By the end of the 1901, Ralph Neville, Liberal politician and King’s Counsel attended the Association.
With his support, events speeded up, in the mean time Howard slipped into a secondary position in the Association. With this changes, also the original scheme changed significantly into a more controlled company. The real idea of the association became a chance and chaos in urban growth. Howard’s garden city became confused in the public minds with a type of low-density suburban development. After Thomas Adam and Ewart Culpin took over the control of the Association, they started the umbrella organization for all housing and planning activity. The whole idea of Howard’s got lost.
After eight years of Howard’s death Osborn became active in the Association and tried to resume Howard’s ideology. After World War I, Association played an important role in British town planning. We certainly believe the fact with the concept that Ebenezer Howard’s concept was an make an effort to remove capitalists ‘so as it was accomplished’ despite its some time to what could be done. It was very obvious that his concepts opended up many individuals’ horizans according to providing a new concept of resident Ebenezer Howard was a great men for urban planning who provided the vision and details of a community for both town and country life.
He believed that these two life should be married together in small Garden Cities, each with its own greenbelt. He promoted well-planned towns with careful land zoning and a quality of life. A Garden City would have well designed houses with gardens set in tree lined avenues, clean and healthy work places and a pleasant and healthy environment in which to live, work and follow leisure pursuits. His purpose is to sustain a healthy, natural, and economic combination of town and country life through a balance of work and leisure.
In this goal, Howard reflects the ideal and harmonious relationship between the industry and garden. Industry and agriculture coexist in his ideal community, as do city and countryside, utopia and arcadia. Howard’s sense of balance, in this case, the concentric circles of the Garden City intersected by broad boulevards, assumes that ideal forms will shape and perfect human functions. The overall goal for Howard is to combine the traditional countryside with the traditional town.
For too long residents have had to make the unfulfilling choice between living in a culturally isolated rural area or giving up nature to live in a city, but “human society and the beauty of nature are meant to be enjoyed together. ” As he sees it, in a rather Hegelian fashion, in our opinion the two “magnets” of Town and Country that have in the past pulled people in either direction will, in the future, be synthesized into one “Town-Country magnet. ”  Green Belt hich was a part of Howard’s aim was developed for places which did not develop more, it was more like a limitation for cities . However, although that was not a certain remedy, places keep growing. As far as we learn in city planning, cities are living formations which reshape in years over and over again. At the same time, even though this idea was developed as a feature of non-urban and town which keep growing and its inhabitants increase, this suggestions stayed poor.
In conclusion, in spite of this information , the solution for a citites future life depent on the decision of the right problem. Maybe the restriction of population and ground may not be work in today’s societies, but Howard’s proposal could be modified and then, be used. We could modernize it easily in more ecological manner. We could locate it on a brownfield, for example, and follow a more urban, transect based planning scheme. In doing so, according to us, we can keep the heart of Howard’s vision while reforming the logistics per our more advanced knowledge.

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