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Gergely Baics & Leah Meisterlin
Gergely Baics & Leah Meisterlin
Assistant Professor of History and Urban Studies, Barnard College and Columbia University
Term Assistant Professor of Architecture, Barnard College and Columbia University
Zoning Before Zoning
Zoning Before Zoning
What was the spatial order of the 19th century city? And how did America’s first metropolis develop without systematic land-use regulations? Before zoning, New York’s built environment was largely unregulated, with property owners finding minimal restrictions to their choices to develop urban land. But the city made by the “invisible hand” had its own spatial order, with commerce, industry and residential spaces competing and coexisting, creating a patchwork of single and mixed-use areas, zones of crowding and density. In this talk, using digital mapping analysis based on data made available by the New York Public Library, Baics and Meisterlin will take us to mid-19th century New York to get a picture of how the space of the metropolis was organized and developed before zoning.
Perdition (Age 21+)
692 10th Avenue
New York, NY 10019, USA
Gergely Baics is Assistant Professor of History and Urban Studies at Barnard College - Columbia University; he is currently an Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Fellow at the New-York Historical Society. He teaches courses on comparative urban history, and his research focuses on the economic, social and geographic history of food provisioning in early New York City.

Leah Meisterlin is Term Assistant Professor at the Barnard & Columbia Colleges Department of Architecture. She teaches courses on architectural design, urbanism, and spatial analysis. Her academic work and professional practice focus on issues of spatial justice, data-driven design and research methods, and social and political space.