Sustaining Architecture in the Anti-Machine Age
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Sustaining Architecture in the Anti-Machine Age asks whether two ambitions can be reconciled. Competing policy demands require architects to aim for economic, social and environmental sustainability whilst trying to effect social progress. More than a matter for architects, sustainability is the contemporary moral alternative to the mechanised promise of modernism. This book considers why the industrial development of town and country is considered unsustainable rather than socially imperative.

We live in an anti-machine age where architectural theorylessness has been applauded and design has been reduced to an exercise in demand management. We can no longer assume support for a machine age as Peter Reyner Banham did in 1960 with 'Theory and Design in the First Machine Age', or as Martin Pawley reviewed in 1990 with 'Theory and Design in the Second Machine Age'. This is an anti-machine age because we are reliant on technology more than ever before, but industrial development is held in low esteem by environmentalists.

Over the last decade the profession and practice of architecture has rapidly changed. Sir Michael Latham's 'Constructing the Team' and Sir John Egan's 'Rethinking Construction' attempted to turn the building industry from labour intensive trade contracting to the capital intensity of manufacturing. As President of the Royal Institute of British Architects to 2003, Paul Hyett has a mandate to establish an environmental duty of care. Sustaining Architecture in the Anti-Machine Age considers what these initiatives are meaning for architects in practice.

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Airlander 'fly by light' architecture by Jonathan Schwinge. View of the 'urban overlayer' airdeck with the V22 Osprey tiltrotor. CAD aircraft model supplied by Viewpoint
Photographs by Simon PunterThe Nat West Media Centre by Future Systems at Lord's Cricket Ground, London, suggests a way forward.Photographs by Jonathan Schwinge
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