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Changing the Commons

The intense social and environmental fervor that arose in the 1960s and 1970s in response to assaults on the planet’s life support systems, degradation of communities, and socio-economic inequality unleashed revolutionary change at all levels of society. 

Out of the turmoil of that era, community-based ecological design emerged as a powerful creative force for reshaping the commons, bringing people together, and forming ecologically sustainable relationships with the environment. The stories in this book reveal how the revolution has played out in reconceiving public places in the landscape of every-day life in northern California. The text focuses on the broad human, social, environmental, and cultural aspects of place-making to create livable, inclusive, sustainable, and treasured spaces. The aesthetic experience of each place is revealed through photos, diagrams, sketches, and plans. Success stories like these offer hope, so sorely needed, for dealing with the seemingly insurmountable current assaults on earth’s life support systems. Paperback, 312 pages.

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