By Simmons B. Buntin with Ken Pirie
Foreword by Galina Tachieva
Unwinding the unsustainable ways in which we’ve built our communities over the last half-century is the most pressing challenge confronting planning, design and development today. Utilizing a dozen case studies from throughout North America, Unsprawl examines the visionary, controversial and ultimately successful strategies employed to introduce new patterns of development into a regulatory, cultural and financial landscape structured to encourage sprawl.
As architect Galina Tachieva notes in her foreword, “Whether they are downtown redevelopments, new greenfield villages, retrofits or ambitious sustainability experiments, the projects in this book demonstrate the long-needed revival of our thinking about urbanism.”
Over 100 full color photographs and illustrations.
“The obstacles to overcoming sprawl are many, these projects show that with creativity and dedication, even the most distressed communities can chart a new course for their future. To create dynamic places, takes dynamic leadership.”
-Simmons Buntin, Author
Authors: Simmons B. Buntin with Ken Pirie
Book cover: Paperback
Print version: Color
Also available on
About the Authors
Simmons B. Buntin is the founding editor-in-chief of Terrain.org: A Journal of the Built & Natural Environments, an online magazine publishing a mix of literary and technical work, including the UnSprawl case studies. He has published prose and poetry widely, including two books: Bloom and Riverfall. Simmons holds graduate degrees in urban and regional planning and creative writing and serves as web program manager at the University of Arizona. He lives in the community of Civano in Tucson, where he founded the neighborhood association and led the community’s speaker series for several years. Before that he lived in Denver and Westminster, Colorado, where he served on the planning commission.
Ken Pirie is an associate with Walker Macy Landscape Architects in Portland, Oregon. Originally from Quebec, via Scotland, then Seattle, Ken works on urban design and campus planning projects up and down the West Coast. He recently helped prepare a master plan for Cottonwood Canyon, Oregon’s newest state park, on the Wild & Scenic John Day River. He has also been working with the development team behind NorthWest Crossing on an expansion to that community. Ken teaches a graduate class in planning at Portland State University and loves to hike and ski when he’s not supporting the Portland Timbers.
"While there are clear reasons why we need to unsprawl, this is a focused how-to book. Exploring all aspects of a project from concept to design and through to its execution, there are lots of details about how projects were financed and built."
-The Dirt, American Society of Landscape Architects
"It is the personal perspectives that differentiate this collection from other compendiums as they lend intimacy that is more commonly found at a conference than in a book. It is almost as if the reader is eavesdropping on private conversations amongst stakeholders, where their true feelings, ambitions and frustrations are on display alongside the concise project summaries..."
- Lisbeth Sinclair, Senior Regional Planner at the Los Angeles County Department of Regional Planning
"While there are clear reasons why we need to unsprawl, this is a focused how-to book. Exploring all aspects of a project from concept to design and through to its execution, there are lots of details on how a project was financed and built. We also learn about the successes and failures along the path to that “particular moment when a project becomes a true place."
- Heidi Petersen, ASLA