Infrastructure as Architecture

I’ve started teaching a class on infrastructure at the architecture school at the New Jersey Institute of Technology in Newark. See here for more info: NJIT Architecture School The two courses I teach, Elements of Infrastructure and History of Infrastructure, are a perfect fit for me. For whatever reason, I’ve gradually become obsessed with the pipes, rails, tubes and other stuff that lie generally beneath our feet. Everyone has got to believe in something; I believe in infrastructure.

Increasingly, the country is too. It and its new leader, President Barack Obama, are turning to infrastructure as the key to lifting ourselves out of bad times and paving the way for future ones. Might work. Here’s a recent column of mine on the subject. Infrastructure column.

Book Underway: Designing Markets

For the past few years, more than I care to count, I’ve been working on a book about what like to call The Design of Markets. The way I figure it, the economic markets we typically refer to are not “natural,” but are designed, largely by government. This is easiest to see with something like the Patent system, which is obviously designed and set up by government. But it’s also true with things like corporations and even basic property rights. I would like to start a more open conversation about this, and thus this book. It will be published by The University of Texas Press, which published my first book, How Cities Work. Now I’ve just got to finish it . . . . If you have info, views or tips that you think might help, pass them my way. You can reach me by going to the “contact me” page at my website.