Edmund Bacon
American urban planner
Edmund Bacon
Edmund Norwood Bacon was a noted American urban planner, architect, educator and author. During his tenure as the Executive Director of the Philadelphia City Planning Commission from 1949 to 1970, his visions shaped today's Philadelphia, the city in which he was born, to the extent that he is sometimes described as "The Father of Modern Philadelphia."
Biography
Edmund Bacon's personal information overview.
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News
News abour Edmund Bacon from around the web
Rediscovering the Road to the Sustainable City - Huffington Post
Google News - over 5 years
Busquets describes the sustainable city as the historical city, which to me, cries for evidence -- a physical realm of the sort championed in the late Edmund Bacon's 1967 classic, Design of Cities, looking to traditional patterned interplay between
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Philadelphia Marriott Downtown Hotel Completes $17 Million Renovation - Marketwire (press release)
Google News - over 5 years
While the rail closed in 1984, urban renewal advocate Edmund Bacon pointed to the building's landmark status and saved it from demolition. The Headhouse then became the new Philadelphia Convention Center's main entrance, while the train shed became its
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Kids get their own great outdoors - Gainsborough Standard
Google News - over 5 years
Until recently, the land, adjacent to the school site on Sweyn Lane off Corringham Road, belonged to the Sir Edmund Bacon Settlement which has links to Gainsborough Old Hall. But the Trust has agreed to make the school the new gatekeeper of the land
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How Edmund Bacon influenced son Kevin while reshaping the Philly streetscape - MiamiHerald.com
Google News - over 5 years
PHILADELPHIA - In "X-Men: First Class," one of the summer's box-office hits ($320 million worldwide and counting), Kevin Bacon stars as a maniacal mutant super-villain. Later this month, the Philadelphia born-and-bred actor can be seen
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La conservazione dei beni architettonici strangola le città - Casa & Clima
Google News - over 5 years
A Philadelphia si domandano come la città sarebbe stata, forse più vivace e di maggior successo, se il celebre urbanista Edmund Bacon avesse abbracciato l'ideologia dominante degli anni '60, e avesse sostituito le abitazioni di epoca coloniale del
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Changing Skyline: History vs. high-rises: An urban debate - Philadelphia Inquirer
Google News - over 5 years
Here's a little thought experiment to get you steamed: What if the celebrated urban planner Edmund Bacon had embraced the prevailing ideology of the 1960s and leveled Society Hill, replacing its blocks of outmoded, colonial-era townhouses with sleek
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DPG hosts sixth annual WoW with seminars - Drexel University The Triangle Online
Google News - over 5 years
Led by moderator Scott Knowles, assistant professor and director of Great Works Symposium and author of “Imagining Philadelphia: Edmund Bacon and the Future of the City,” the panelists were all authors specializing in historical fiction novels who
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CHILDREN'S BOOKS; Mothers of Intervention
NYTimes - almost 8 years
CLAUDETTE COLVIN Twice Toward Justice By Phillip Hoose 133 pp. Melanie Kroupa Books/Farrar, Straus & Giroux. $19.95.(Ages 10 and up) GENIUS OF COMMON SENSE Jane Jacobs and the Story of ''The Death and Life of Great American Cities.'' Written and illustrated by Glenna Lang and Marjory Wunsch 127 pp. David R. Godine. $17.95.(Ages 10 and up) Sometimes
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A World-Famous Architect Goes Home to Cornell
NYTimes - over 10 years
One of the striking attributes of contemporary architectural practice is that a star like Rem Koolhaas might one day be toiling on a design for an enormous television headquarters in Beijing and, the next moment, unveil plans for an understated university building in Ithaca, N.Y. ''It's definitely an exercise in modest, discreet intervention,'' Mr.
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Edmund Bacon, 95, Urban Planner of Philadelphia, Dies
NYTimes - over 11 years
Edmund N. Bacon, a leading postwar urban planner who remade much of Philadelphia, died on Friday at his home there. He was 95. His death was confirmed by his daughter Elinor Bacon. As the executive director of the Philadelphia City Planning Commission from 1949 to 1970, Mr. Bacon had an impact on his native city that some have compared to that of
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FILM FESTIVAL REVIEW; Son of a Celebrated Father Traces His Elusive Past
NYTimes - almost 14 years
There is a built-in poignancy to any story of a son searching for clues to the identity of a father he barely knew. But in the case of Nathaniel Kahn, the illegitimate son of the great architect Louis I. Kahn, who died in 1974, that poignancy has an extra twinge, since this mostly absent father strove so diligently to remain a man of mystery. When
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BOLDFACE NAMES
NYTimes - over 14 years
A Notable Absentee This is about who was, and was not, at a $500-per-person-and-up dinner on Wednesday for the High Line, the abandoned elevated railroad viaduct that snakes through Chelsea and the meat-packing district. In the not-there category was MARTHA STEWART, kept away by ''a scheduling conflict,'' the organizers said. Still, she was a
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EDWARD J. LOGUE; Shared Leadership
NYTimes - almost 17 years
To the Editor: Herbert Muschamp's appreciation of Edward J. Logue [''From an Era When Equality Mattered,'' Feb. 20] fails to get at some fundamental differences between the way urban reinvestment policy was conducted in Mr. Logue's heyday and the approach that cities have to pursue now in order to ''reconfigure themselves in the era of mass
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Critic's Notebook; Of Sculpture and the Past Revivified
NYTimes - over 18 years
The announcement said simply, ''Ellsworth Kelly: Sculpture for a Large Wall, 1957,'' a title that didn't prepare me for a reunion with an old friend. But there it was, alarmingly visible through the window of the Matthew Marks Gallery at 522 West 22d Street in Chelsea: the portal to the city of my youth. The piece, an immense aluminum construction
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Shining Cities
NYTimes - about 21 years
THE AMERICAN CITY What Works, What Doesn't. By Alexander Garvin. Illustrated. 477 pp. New York: McGraw-Hill. $59.95. This fascinating and almost formidably knowledgeable book, a kind of one-volume Encyclopedia Urbanica that closely examines 250 neighborhoods, parks, building programs and projects in 100 contemporary American cities, is -- and
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DESIGN NOTEBOOK; Rebellion Spreads for Walkable Cities
NYTimes - almost 26 years
FOR a new generation of urban design advocates, walking has become a first step. Brandishing "Touch-the-earth . . . walk" buttons, this new generation of urban pioneers is advocating walker-friendly design to improve the lot of the hapless pedestrian. From San Francisco to Ottawa, groups have formed to draft an environment for people, not cars.
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Caroline S. Sharfman, An Executive, Marries
NYTimes - over 27 years
LEAD: Caroline Sharp Sharfman and James Edmund Bacon were married yesterday at Christ and St. Stephen's Episcopal Church in New York. The Rev. Joseph Zorawick officiated. Mrs. Bacon, a graduate of the University of Michigan with an M.B.A. degree from Columbia University, is a daughter of Dr. and Mrs. Mahlon S. Caroline Sharp Sharfman and James
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Timeline
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of Edmund Bacon
    LATE_ADULTHOOD
  • 2005
    Age 94
    Died on October 14, 2005.
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  • 2004
    Age 93
    From 2004 until his death at the age of 95, Bacon helped found and served as an Honorary Director of a foundation that bears his name, The Ed Bacon Foundation, whose programs are now managed by the Edmund N. Bacon Memorial Committee at the Philadelphia Center for Architecture.
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  • 2003
    Age 92
    In 2003 he appeared in the documentary My Architect about Louis Kahn, a Philadelphia architect.
    More Details Hide Details In September 2006, at the northwest corner of 15th Street and J.F.K. Boulevard, by LOVE Park, The Ed Bacon Foundation and the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission dedicated a state historical marker honoring Bacon's memory and commemorating his work. Bacon was the father of six children: two sons, actor Kevin Bacon, musician Michael Bacon, and four daughters, Karin, Elinor, Hilda and Prudence (later Kira). His wife was Ruth Hilda Holmes, a teacher and liberal political activist. His friends included Buckminster Fuller, Steen Eiler Rasmussen, James Rouse, and Konstantinos Apostolos Doxiadis.
  • 2002
    Age 91
    In 2002, at age 92, he skateboarded in LOVE Park, the plaza he founded and designed at Cornell in 1932, as a protest against the City's ban on the sport.
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  • 1985
    Age 74
    Bacon was present at the groundbreaking, which took place in May 1985.
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  • 1984
    Age 73
    He vociferously but unsuccessfully opposed the development of skyscrapers in Center City Philadelphia taller than Philadelphia City Hall, which until 1984 set the informal height limit for downtown at the hat of the statue of William Penn.
    More Details Hide Details That custom, known as the "Gentlemen's Agreement," was broken forever by developer Willard G. Rouse III's One Liberty Place. The New York Times correctly noted Bacon's opposition to the project, but it was incorrect in saying that "in opposing the skyscraper One Liberty Place, Mr. Bacon refused to attend the tower's 1986 groundbreaking and stopped speaking to his friend Willard G. Rouse III, who built it. 'I think it's very, very destructive that he and he alone has chosen to destroy a historical tradition that set a very fine and disciplined form for the city,' Mr. Bacon said at the time."
  • 1983
    Age 72
    In 1983, Bacon was elected into the National Academy of Design as an Associate member, and became a full member on 1994.
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  • FIFTIES
  • 1970
    Age 59
    After Bacon's retirement from the Planning Commission in 1970, he served as vice president for the private planning firm Mondev U.S.A., was an adjunct professor at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and at the University of Pennsylvania, from 1950 to 1987, and narrated "Understanding Cities", an award-winning series of documentary films describing the history and development of Rome under Pope Sixtus V, Paris under Baron Georges-Eugène Haussmann, Regency London under John Nash, American cities, and cities in the future post-oil era.
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  • 1967
    Age 56
    In 1967, he wrote Design of Cities, still considered an important architectural text.
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  • 1964
    Age 53
    His face graced the cover of TIME magazine in 1964, and in 1965, Life magazine devoted its cover story to his work.
    More Details Hide Details That same year, Bacon was appointed by President Johnson to serve as a member of the White House's Conference on Recreation and Natural Beauty.
  • 1963
    Age 52
    Other concepts conceived during Bacon's tenure, such as Schuylkill River Park, included in the 1963 Center City Plan, came into being many years later.
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  • THIRTIES
  • 1949
    Age 38
    In 1949, Bacon succeeded Mitchell as Executive Director of the Philadelphia City Planning Commission.
    More Details Hide Details Serving under Mayors Samuel, Clark, Dilworth, and Tate, his work brought him national repute along with his counterparts Edward Logue in Boston and Robert Moses in New York City during the mid-century era of urban renewal.
  • 1947
    Age 36
    In 1947, he joined the staff of the Philadelphia City Planning Commission under then-Executive Director Robert Mitchell (not the Canadian politician), and served as co-designer to the 1947 Better Philadelphia Exhibition in collaboration with Oscar Stonorov and Louis Kahn. Bacon was also an early member of the City Policy Committee, a grassroots movement of young Philadelphians, established by future civic leader Walter M. Phillips, that was instrumental in Philadelphia's political reform movement. Members of the Committee went on to become leaders in Philadelphia government after 1952, when the reform Democrat (and later U.S. Senator) Joseph Sill Clark was elected Mayor, Richardson Dilworth became District Attorney, and a new Home Rule Charter was instituted.
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  • TWENTIES
  • 1939
    Age 28
    The funding was turned down, and Bacon was effectively run out of Flint in 1939.
    More Details Hide Details From Flint, Bacon returned to Philadelphia to serve as Managing Director of the Philadelphia Housing Association. He served in the United States Navy aboard the USS Shoshone in the Pacific in World War II.
  • 1936
    Age 25
    During his time in Flint, Bacon witnessed the 1936-37 Flint Sit-Down Strike, and felt empathetic to the workers.
    More Details Hide Details Bacon gained close contacts with individuals who were active in establishing the Federal Housing Authority, such as Catherine Bauer and Lewis Mumford. Through these contacts he helped secure federal housing dollars for Flint. However, the local real-estate industry came to see this Federal funding for public housing as a threat to their business (as was the case in several cities early in the history of the FHA).
  • TEENAGE
  • 1928
    Age 17
    Bacon was born in West Philadelphia, the son of Helen Atkinson (née Comly) and Ellis Williams Bacon. He grew up in the Philadelphia suburbs and graduated from Swarthmore High School in 1928.
    More Details Hide Details He was educated in architecture at Cornell University, where his senior thesis for a new civic center for Philadelphia included an urban park at the position where Philadelphia's famous LOVE Park was later built. After college, while traveling the world on a small inheritance, Bacon found work as an architect in Shanghai, China, a city that exerted a deep influence on his thinking. After a year in China, he returned to Philadelphia where he worked for architect William Pope Barney. He soon was awarded a scholarship to the Cranbrook Academy of Art, in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, with Finnish architect/planner Eliel Saarinen, whom Bacon revered and whose theories about the city as a living organism as expressed in Saarinen's book The City were a basis for Bacon's later work. Saarinen sent Bacon to Flint, Michigan to guide a WPA traffic survey. This project transformed into a permanent position for Bacon at the Flint Institute for Planning and Research. Bacon became very active in civic life in Flint, helping to establish the Flint Housing Association and reforming the city's Planning Commission.
  • CHILDHOOD
  • 1910
    Born
    Born on May 2, 1910.
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Original Authors of this text are noted here.
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