Beyond the City
Resource Extraction Urbanism in South America
178 Pages, 7.00 x 10.00 x 0.80 in
Sales Date: June 7, 2016
During the last decade, the South American continent has seen a strong push for transnational integration, initiated by the former Brazilian president Fernando Henrique Cardoso, who (with the endorsement of eleven other nations) spearheaded the Initiative for the Integration of Regional Infrastructure in South America (IIRSA), a comprehensive energy, transport, and communications network. The most aggressive transcontinental integration project ever planned for South America, the initiative systematically deploys ten east-west infrastructural corridors, enhancing economic development but raising important questions about the polarizing effect of pitting regional needs against the colossal processes of resource extraction. Providing much-needed historical contextualization to IIRSA’s agenda, Beyond the City ties together a series of spatial models and offers a survey of regional strategies in five case studies of often overlooked sites built outside the traditional South American urban constructs.
Implementing the term “resource extraction urbanism,” the architect and urbanist Felipe Correa takes us from Brazil’s nineteenth-century regional capital city of Belo Horizonte to the experimental, circular, “temporary” city of Vila Piloto in Três Lagoas. In Chile, he surveys the mining town of María Elena. In Venezuela, he explores petrochemical encampments at Judibana and El Tablazo, as well as new industrial frontiers at Ciudad Guayana. The result is both a cautionary tale, bringing to light a history of societies that were “inscribed” and administered, and a perceptive examination of the agency of architecture and urban planning in shaping South American lives.
[Correa's] work describes a series of ex novo urban and regional projects in South America sited and designed to facilitate the mining or harvesting of natural resources. This arresting group of incarnated dreams offers a vivid alternative—or critically supplementary—history of the modern city, embodying an aspirational possibility in which both creating an urban design and realizing it can be imaginative and literal all at once. . . . The author’s evocation of the urban and the territorial is acute and revelatory, a nuanced analysis of the interaction of formal ideals and the aggressive extraction of the earth’s resources.~Architectural Record
- Introduction. Shaping Resource Extraction
- Chapter 1. A Regional Capital: Belo Horizonte
- Chapter 2. A Mining Town Constellation: María Elena
- Chapter 3. Petrol Encampments: Judibana and El Tablazo
- Chapter 4. A New Industrial Frontier: Ciudad Guayana
- Chapter 5. Pioneering Modernity: Vila Piloto
- Epilogue. The Legacy of Resource Extraction Urbanism and the Future of the South American Hinterland