Planned city

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Scheme of Mannheim city ​​center

A planned city is a city or a district whose floor plan is based on a clearly recognizable plan . This requires that the built-up area was completely free for planning ("on the green field ") or at least was cleared by targeted demolition (see also area renovation ), destruction during war or after a fire disaster. Colloquially, the term test- tube city is derogatory for a “city that has been planned and created as a whole, but that has not grown naturally”.

Special circumstances lead to the founding of planned capitals . They often differ in size from ordinary planned cities. Well-known examples are Brasília , Canberra , Islamabad , New Delhi , Saint Petersburg and Washington, DC


There were planned cities in many epochs of history, cities were already laid out according to strict patterns in ancient times . A typical pattern is the orthogonal street grid ; it can be found (as Spiro Kostof explains) in ancient Greece as well as in ancient China , in the Spanish colonial cities of the 16th century as well as in the centers of many large cities in today's USA . Almost every founding city is a planned city in the broader sense, since at least the main routes with the position of the city ​​gates , public spaces, possibly the course of the city ​​wall and the location of public buildings have been determined.

Each epoch had its own ideas, which were derived from a currently prevailing ideal or principles ( ideal city , improvement of cities). Some of these principles are no longer comprehensible today, such as the plans of medieval cities, which today appear to have grown out of control or have been reshaped in many ways.

Typical planned cities in Europe are

New Town

The urban geographic term New Town ("Neue Stadt") originating from Great Britain stands for a planned city; this can also be based on an existing settlement. Its main task is to relieve the major urban areas . The New Town has central facilities, residential and commercial districts. The establishment of “neighborhoods”, which are grouped around a center with public facilities and shops, is typical. There are 31 New Towns in Great Britain.

By Ebenezer Howard , the idea came a Garden City (Garden City), a planned city, with those of rural life combined the advantages of the city. He inspired the founding of Welwyn in 1903 and Letchworth in 1920 . In 1946 the Labor Government passed the New Towns Act . The aim was to counteract the concentration of industry and people in the big cities. Expressly no satellite cities should be created, but independent units with their own economy and heterogeneous population structure. Depending on the city, a maximum size of between 20,000 and 60,000 inhabitants was initially aimed for. The New Towns are Basildon , Bracknell , Corby , Crawley , Cwmbran , East Kilbride , Glenrothes , Harlow , Hatfield , Hemel Hempstead , Newton Aycliffe , Peterlee , Stevenage and Welwyn Garden City .

Problems were the skepticism of the population and local governments, a lack of transport links, funding gaps and overruns of the planned costs. Above all, it was criticized that the scope of the project was far too small to counteract the population growth. The answer was the 1952 Town Development Act . Now the aim was also to enlarge existing cities, especially near metropolises like London. These cities are Central Lancashire , Milton Keynes , Northampton , Peterborough , Redditch , Skelmersdale , Telford (Dawley New Town), Warrington, and Washington .

In 1962, Dalgety Bay near Edinburgh was the first planned city in Scotland to be built on a purely private initiative. A model town initiated by Prince Charles is Poundbury , which has been under construction since 1993.

Planned cities


middle Ages
The oldest surviving draft of Erlanger Neustadt , red wash pen drawing (1686), attributed to Johann Moritz Richter
Putbus on the island of Rügen , a classicist plan town in the early 19th century
  • Neu-Büderich - classicist planned town from the early 19th century
  • Neuruppin - early classicist planned town, rebuilt after a fire in 1787.
  • Munich- Maxvorstadt - the first planned urban expansion of Munich was designed on a square grid between 1805 and 1810 under the first Bavarian King Maximilian I Joseph , after whom it is named ; Most of it was not built until after 1825 under Ludwig I in the classical style
  • Putbus - system around a circular center, the circus with streets leading away radially
  • Tuttlingen in 1804 city fire as a classicist town of - Carl Leonard Uber rebuilt
Second half of the 19th century
First half of the 20th century
after 1945
21st century



Road map of the planned town of La Chaux-de-Fonds ( Switzerland )
  • Glarus - In 1861 a fire raged that destroyed large parts of the town. Only a few buildings from the time before the fire remained in the cityscape. The rapid reconstruction took place in a checkerboard pattern. This urban planning, known mainly from the USA, was chosen to prevent further conflagrations.
  • Glattpark - a new district in the municipality of Opfikon near Zurich; In the final stage, living and working place for over 10,000 people
  • Gundeldingen - district of the city of Basel
  • Heiden AR - after the fire of 1838, the village was rebuilt in a regular classical-Biedermeier complex
  • La Chaux-de-Fonds - after the fire of 1795, the city was rebuilt in a right-angled style (see picture)
  • Le Locle - rebuilt in a chessboard layout after the fire of 1833
  • Seewis in Prättigau - after the fire of 1863, newly built village in a checkerboard pattern

Rest of Europe

Draft for the planned town of Kaskinen , Finland (1767)
  • Helsinki - In 1812 the previously little important place was rebuilt as the capital of the Grand Duchy of Finland and based on plans by Carl Ludwig Engel .
  • Vaasa - built in 1862 as Nikolaistad (Nikolainkaupunki) in Empire style after the predecessor town, 7 km away, fell victim to a fire
Aerial view of Neuf-Brisach
Great Britain

See above under New Town .

City map of Palmanova (around 1600)
  • Valletta - the capital, designed in 1566, is considered the first planned city after antiquity
  • Almere , Emmeloord , Lelystad and Dronten - founded in the 20th century in the polders of the Flevoland province . The entire land of this province has been drained, so not only the cities but also the province itself are the fruit of planning.
Nowa Huta
  • Frampol - founded in 1705 by Franciszek Butler (according to other sources, it was founded in 1717 by Marek Antoni Butler)
  • Nowa Huta - founded in 1949 as the site of an iron and steel combine
  • Zamość - built in 1578 by order of Jan Zamoyski , according to the ideas of the Venetian architect Bernardo Morando, in the style of the Italian Renaissance
  • Hunedoara - a socialist city was created through the settlement of an ironworks
  • Yekaterinburg - laid out in 1723 as a factory and fortress city with a right-angled road network
  • Saint Petersburg - from 1706 laid out under Peter the Great, from 1712 capital of the Russian tsarism
  • Tolyatti created in 1955 after the previous city of Stavropol in - kuybyshev reservoir had set
  • Borgholm - from 1816 a new city
  • Kalmar - 1647–1657 New construction of the town on the island of Kvarnholmen after the destruction of the Kalmar War 1622–1613 and the fire of 1647
  • Karlskrona - 1679 by King Karl XI. established naval base
  • Novi Beograd - in post-war Yugoslavia built according to the principles of Le Corbusier, north of the Sava river
Eixample in Barcelona
  • Ampuriabrava - Costa Brava, Catalonia, 1960
  • Eixample - a district of Barcelona created in the 19th century , characteristic are the square blocks with the sloping corners (chaflanes) and many modernist buildings
  • La Carolina - city in the province of Jaén, built in the 18th century for southern German settlers
Czech Republic
  • Most - the city was rebuilt between 1967 and 1982 as a socialist city, after the old town was almost completely demolished due to coal mining
  • Zlín (1949–1990: Gottwaldov ) - from 1923 created for the Bata shoe factories and their workers; the city map follows a design by Le Corbusier
  • Dnipro (originally Yekaterinoslav , later Dnipropetrovsk ) - founded in 1787 by Catherine the Great as the capital of the New Russia governorate
  • Pripyat - a socialist city founded in 1970 as a place of residence for the workers of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant
  • Slavutytsch - model Soviet town built after the Chernobyl disaster in 1986–1988
  • Kazincbarcika - as a mining and chemical site from 1951 built socialist town
  • Dunaújváros - Hungary's first socialist town ( Sztálinváros until 1961 ), which was established in 1949 with the establishment of an ironworks



30 planned cities were founded in Israel , 19 of them without an old settlement core. Examples:

rest of the Middle East
South asia
Tai Po New Town (Hong Kong)
East asia
  • In China, several new cities were created in the 2000s, each for several hundred thousand, in some cases even one million, residents. These were completely completed with public facilities and transport infrastructure before the first residents moved in. Some were still “ ghost towns ” years after they were completed . Examples are:
    • The planned city of Kangbashi, part of the district-free city of Ordos in Inner Mongolia (PR China) has become known as a “ghost town”. It was laid out in the 2000s for 300,000 residents, with a library, opera house and five-story shopping center, but initially only had a population of 5,000. Around 2015, the capacity was increased again to one million, the official population was around 153,000 in 2017.
    • Lingang New City , People's Republic of China - city under construction (2003–2020), 60 km from Shanghai ; concentric around an artificial lake, is said to have up to 800,000 inhabitants
    • Zhengdong New Area, Zhengzhou (Henan Province), created in the 2000s, was initially a similar case to Kangbashi, but has now seen a noticeable population increase
  • In Hong Kong , nine so-called New Towns have been built on schedule since the 1970s , in which almost half of the Hong Kong population now lives.
  • Sejong , South Korea - new administrative center
  • Songdo City , South Korea - part of the city of Incheon , construction period 2003–2020, free trade zone on polder areas
South East Asia


  • Abuja - capital of Nigeria (since 1991), built in the 1980s
  • Alexandria - founded on April 7, 331 BC By Alexander the Great
  • Amarna (Achet-Aton) - planned capital of the ancient Egyptian king Akhenaten from the 14th century BC. Chr.
  • Ciudad de la Paz - planned new capital of Equatorial Guinea
  • Madinat as-Sadis min Uktubar (City of October 6; 6th of October City) - a satellite city founded in 1979 under President Anwar as-Sadat for overpopulated Cairo
  • Pretoria - founded in 1855 by the later South African President Marthinus Wessel Pretorius, made capital in 1860
  • Yamoussoukro - from 1965, the birthplace of the Ivorian President Félix Houphouët-Boigny was expanded to a city as planned, and in 1983 it was named the country's capital


State Capitol and National Mall in Washington, DC
North America
  • New York - at the beginning of the growth phase in the early 19th century , the central district of Manhattan was given a strictly geometric orientation with building blocks and streets numbered far into the unpopulated north of the island
  • Washington, DC - Capital of the United States since 1800
  • Reston , Virginia - Founded in 1964 by real estate entrepreneur Robert E. Simon
  • California City , California - Planned by a real estate developer from 1958
  • Westlake Village , California - area originally populated by Europeans since 1770, bought and rebuilt by a shipping company in 1963, but only registered as an independent town of Westlake Village in 1981
  • Irvine , California - Built in 1960 on a 37,636 acre ranch
  • Celebration , Florida - Built in 1994 by the Walt Disney Company
  • Mililani , Hawaii - erected on pineapple plantations in 1967–2008
Plano Piloto of Brasilia
Central America and the Caribbean
South America


Note: The list may be incomplete.

See also

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Retortenstadt in, accessed on November 6, 2013
  2. ^ A b Winston W. Crouch, Richard Bigger: Metropolitan Decentralization: Britain's New Towns Program . In: The Western Political Quarterly , Vol. 3, No. 2, June 1950, pp. 244-261.
  3. Lloyd Rodwin: The British New Towns Policy: Problems and Implications . Harvard University Press, Cambridge, 1956.
  4. ^ Gazetteer for Scotland: Dalgety Bay , accessed January 28, 2014
  5. Can you kiss in Halle-Neustadt? , in Die Welt on July 15, 2014