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Functionalisation

Suburbia has superceded the city as the primary locus of urban activity. Most places of work, shopping, care and leisure are conveniently located near the highway. To many, this opens up the possibility of a middle-class lifestyle, centred on mobility, centrality, value for money; a comfortable home in an uncomplicated environment, without much regard of location.

It often concerns family-oriented, one-and-a-half-earner households, rather than traditional families. Though surprisingly varied in income and education, these modern suburbanites do not possess much cultural capital. It is a lifestyle in which the aim is the maximum comfort for the minimum costs.

This functionalisation of daily life and residential choice, has its structural parallel in land use patterns. Instead of cities with a hinterland of villages, we live in an urban field dominated by non-places (or rather, mono-cultural zero-friction enclaves) in which cities and villages have become the exception.

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