The Berlage Archive: Leon Krier (2010)

In this lecture, Leon Krier expounds upon his decades-long critique of modernist urbanism and design. Using his experiences planning and building the town of Poundbury, England as a lens for viewing contemporary planning practice, he compares modernist and classicist theory in their approaches to zoning and building construction.

In today’s world, Krier sees the interrelated phenomena of vertical sprawl (skyscrapers) and horizontal sprawl (landscrapers and suburbs) as negative developments in planning practice that stand at odds with successful classical examples of mixed-use, compact, and height-restricted development. Moreover, modernist methods of constructing cities are not viable in a world without fossil fuels, and our limited supply of natural resources necessitates that architects explore models of classical and traditional design that are better suited for the world of tomorrow. While modernism is not an inherently flawed approach to design, and indeed there are many examples of good modern architecture, it has too often bred careless “bad” design with enormous downsides for the character and quality of urban life.

Don’t miss the other lectures in The Berlage Archive series:

ArchDaily has teamed up with the The Berlage to provide exclusive access to their newly digitized archive of lectures. The Berlage is a postgraduate international institute where some of the world’s most renowned architects, thinkers, designers, photographers and other professionals come to share, exchange and critically reflect upon their ideas. Over the last 23 years, The Berlage has built up an extensive archive of seminal lectures. Thanks to this partnership we can now share them with you. ArchDaily is committed to providing inspiration and knowledge to architects all over the world, so please look forward to monthly publications of these lectures during the coming year.

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Cite: David Langdon. "The Berlage Archive: Leon Krier (2010)" 28 Nov 2014. ArchDaily. Accessed . <> ISSN 0719-8884

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