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The Architecture of Parking

Simon Henley

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The only comprehensive international survey of one of the most neglected but most important building types of the modern era: the parking garage


Winner of the RIBA International Book Award for Construction 2008

Housing the maximum number of cars in a well-designed space is one of the most challenging aspects of 20th-century architecture, which has attracted a stellar array of architects.

This is the first major international survey of parking garages ever published. Multi-levelled like a car park itself, the book presents visual essays, project spreads and case studies that feature ground-breaking historical and recent structures in photographs and drawings.

From the iconic Marina City towers in Chicago to the latest robotic technology at the Volkswagen Autotürme in Germany, the author shows how the form and function of the parking garage has been hugely influential not only on generations of architects but on popular culture, capturing the imagination of novelists, photographers and film-makers.

The Architecture of Parking is an inspirational resource for students, professional architects, urban planners, engineers, developers, and anyone interested in how construction for cars has shaped our built world.

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'A hymn to the true temples of the automobile age'
J. G. Ballard, Guardian

'Beautifully photographed … shows that car parks offer some of the most astonishingly sculptural forms and surfaces in contemporary architecture'
Financial Times

'Wonderfully original … a Pevsner of parking'
New Statesman

'Proves that park-life isn’t without its aesthetic pleasures'
Dazed & Confused

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Product Information

Book Details

Format: Paperback

Size: 21.5 x 19.7 cm

Extent: 256 pp

Illustrations: 568

Publication date: 23 February 2009

ISBN: 9780500287965

Contents List

Introduction: The History, Aesthetics and Impact of the Parking Structure • 1. Elevation: Skin, Lightness and Expression • 2. Matter: The Plasticity of Concrete • 3. Light: Animating the Utilitarian • 4. Space: Formal Innovation and Programmatic Experimentation Conclusion

About the Author

A passionate observer of parking garages for many years, Simon Henley is principal of the award-winning London-based architecture firm Buschow Henley.