Roberta Brandes Gratz discusses “The Battle for Gotham”

Host: Centre for City Ecology

Roberta Brandes Gratz is an award-winning journalist and urban critic, lecturer and most recently the author of The Battle For Gotham: New York in the Shadow of Robert Moses and Jane Jacobs, published in 2010. Gratz is a long-time advocate for the essential tenets proposed by Jane Jacobs. She will speak at CCE on the current controversy raised by Jacobs’ critics who suggest her work is dated and no longer applicable to the urban challenges of the twenty-first century. Gratz argues Jacobs is more relevant today than ever before.

Gratz is the author of several other books and articles, including The Living City: Thinking Small in a Big Way and Cities Back from the Edge: New Life for Downtown. She is an international lecturer on urban development issues, a former reporter for the New York Post, has written pieces that have appeared in the New York Times and The Nation, and currently writes online for Citiwire, the Huffington Post and Planetizen.

Gratz was appointed by Mayor Michael Bloomberg to the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission in February 2003. In 2010, she resigned from LPC and was appointed to the Mayor’s Sustainability Advisory Board. In 2003, Gratz, in collaboration with Jane Jacobs and a small group of like-minded urbanists, founded the Center For the Living City to build on Jacobs’ work. The Center has partnered with Jane’s Walk in Toronto to coordinate walks across the United States.

Gratz’s talk will be followed by a book signing, with copies of the book available for sale from SWiPE and BUILT: Books on Design, Architecture and Urbanism.

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