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Important Dates & Information:

Application Deadline: January 15 
Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) Application Deadline: October 1 - April 30
Intent to Enroll Deadline: April 15

Master of Urban Design Online Infosession - December 8
Visit the Master of Urban Design admissions page to apply


Reading Resources

Theories of Urban Design (UD 519)

  • Jacobs, Jane. 1993. The Death and Life of Great American Cities. New York: The Modern Library.
  • Larice, Michael, and Elizabeth Macdonald, eds. 2007. The Urban Design Reader. The Routledge Urban Reader Series., eds. Richard T. LeGates, Frederic Stout. New York: Routledge.
  • Lynch, Kevin. 1960. The Image of the City. Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press.
  • Wolfe, Tom. From Bauhaus to Our House. New York: Bantam Books.

The History of Urban Form (UD713)

  • Jane Jacobs. The Death and Life of Great American Cities.
  • Lewis Mumford. The City in History.
  • Spiro Kostof. The City Shaped.

Practices of Urban Design (UD 729)

  • Calthorpe, Peter and William Fulton The Regional City. Washington: Island Press, 2001.
  • Newman, Peter and Jeffrey Kenworthy Sustainability and Cities: Overcoming Automobile Dependence. Washington: Island Press, 2004.

Intermediate Studio (UD722)

Requires two sets of readings: one about Urban Design and one about Cities.

Urban Design Readings:

  • Alexander, Christopher et. al. A New Theory of Urban Design. New York: Oxford University Press, 1987.
  • Bacon, Edmund N. Design of Cities. New York: Viking Press, 1974.
  • Chase, John, and Margaret Crawford and John Kaliski, eds. Everyday Urbanism. New York: Monacelli Press, 1999.
  • Holl, Steven. Alphabetical City. New York: Pamphlet Architecture, 1980.
  • Jacobs, Allan B. Great Streets. Cambridge: MIT Press, 1993.
  • Kelbaugh, Douglas. Common Place. Seattle: University of Washington Press, 1997.
  • Repairing the American Metropolis. Seattle: University of Washington Press, 2002.
  • Koolhaus, Rem. Delirious New York: A Retroactive Manifesto for Manhattan. New York: Oxford University Press, 1978.
  • Lynch, Kevin. The Image of the City. Cambridge: MIT Press, 1980.
  • The Theory of Good City Form. Cambridge: MIT Press, 1981.
  • Mitchell, William J. City of Bits: Space, Place and the Infobahn. Cambridge: MIT Press, 1995.
  • Newman, Oscar. Defensible Space. New York: Collier Books, 1973.
  • Newman, Peter and Jeffrey Kenworthy. Sustainability and Cities: Overcoming Automobile Dependence. Washington, DC: Island Press.
  • Rowe, Collin and Fred Koetter. Collage City. Cambridge: MIT Press, 1978.
  • Tschumi, Bernard. Event Cities: Praxis. Cambridge: MIT Press, 1994.
  • Venturi, Robert and Denis Scott Brown and Steven Izenour. Learning From Las Vegas: The Forgotten Symbolism of Architectural Form. Cambridge: MIT Press, 1977.

Cities Readings:

  • Caro, Robert A. The Power Broker: Robert Moses and the Fall of New York. New York: Vintage Books, 1995.
  • Florida, Richard. The Rise of the Creative Class. New York: Basic Books, 2002.
  • Jacobs, Jane. The Death and Life of Great American Cities. New York: Random House, 1961.
  • Olsen, Donald J. The City as a Work of Art: London, Paris, Vienna. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1986.
  • Sassen, Saskia. The Global City: New York, London, Tokyo. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
  • Scully, Vincent J. American Architecture and Urbanism. New York: Praeger, 1969.
  • Sherwood, Roger. Modern Housing Prototypes. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1978.
  • Solomon, Daniel. Global City Blues. Washington: Island Press, 2003.
  • Stern, Robert A.M. et al. New York 1900: Metropolitan Architecture and Urbanism, 1890 – 1915. New York: Rizzoli, 1983.
  • New York 1930: Architecture and Urbanism Between Two World Wars. New York: Rizzoli, 1987.
  • New York 1960: Architecture and Urbanism Between the Second World War and the Bicentennial. New York, Monacelli Press, 1995.

Methodologies of Urban Design (UD 723)

  • Blackmar, Elizabeth. The Park and the People. Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1992.
  • Bressi, Todd, ed. Planning and Zoning New York City. New Brunswick: Rutgers University Press, 1993.
  • Burrows, Edwin and Mike Wallace. Gotham: A History of New York City to 1898. New York: Oxford University Press, 1999.
  • Caro, Robert. The Power Broker: Robert Moses and the Fall of New York. New York: Knopf, 1984.
  • Jacobs, Jane. The Death and Life of Great American Cities.
  • Plunz, Richard. A History of Housing in New York City. New York: Columbia University Press, 1990.
  • Stern, Robert A.M. and Thomas Mellins and David Fishman. New York 1880. New York: The Monacelli Press, 1999.
  • Stern, Robert A.M. and Gregory Gilmartin and John Massengale. New York 1900. New York: Rizzoli International Publishers, 1983.
  • Stern, Robert A.M. and Gregory Gilmartin and Thomas Mellins. New York 1930. New York: Rizzoli International Publishers, 1987.
  • Stern, Robert A.M. and Thomas Mellins and David Fishman. New York 1960. New York: The Monacelli Press, 1995.

Film Resources

In the Master of Urban Design Program, film plays a central role in learning how to observe, analyze, and design cities.

As part of the Intermediate Design Studio, students view an international array of films while diagramming the relationships between space and narrative, from Vienna's underground infrastructure as revealed in The Third Man to Manhattan apartment and office interiors as dissected by The Naked City. Lessons from film are then applied to the term's design project, for which students construct analytical narratives or storyboards for studio sites that in turn help establish narratives for projects. Project narratives play two important roles in design work: they help generate designs as they help communicate design intentions in a compelling and accessible manner to a wide audience, as is appropriate to the public-oriented discipline of urban design. (To learn more, read Roy Strickland’s article, "Background into Foreground: Film as a Medium for Teaching Urban Design" published in Places Journal.)

  • Boston: Good Will Hunting
  • New York City: The Naked City
  • Brooklyn: Do the Right Thing
  • Washington, DC: All the President's Men
  • Detroit: Eight Mile
  • Chicago: Love Jones
  • San Francisco: Vertigo
  • Los Angeles: Crash
  • New Orleans: Panic in the Streets
  • Edge City: Office Space
  • Medellin (Colombia): Our Lady of the Assassins
  • London: Night and the City
  • Paris: Breathless
  • Berlin: Wings of Desire
  • Vienna: The Third Man
  • Rome: The Bicycle Thief
  • Algiers: Battle for Algiers
  • Bombay: Salaam Bombay
  • Beijing: Beijing Bicycle
  • Hong Kong: Chinese Box
  • Tokyo: That Taxing Woman

Website Resources

Design and Urban Design

Planning and Development and Policy

Green Design and Sustainable Design

Urban Real Estate

Design Bookstores

Detroit News

U.S. and International News

A rich array of resources and activities are open to Masters in Urban Design (M.U.D.) Program students. These include:

  • Travel is an important part of program studios and seminars. Nothing quite equals experiencing real places for developing ideas for and perspectives on urban design. Students have visited major cities such as New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Detroit, Portland, Venice and Istanbul as part of their studio and seminar work. Travel costs are partially subsidized by the program.
  • The international study option allows program students to satisfy their elective requirement by taking an additional spring half-term in the College's study-abroad courses. Recent locations include India, China, Ghana, Switzerland, Italy, Germany, Japan and the Czech Republic.
  • The Charles Moore Visiting Professorship brings a prominent designer each winter term to co-teach with program faculty in the M.U.D. studio. (Past Charles Moore and other visiting appointments include Ken Greenberg, Max Bond, Steven Peterson, Barbara Littenberg, Ghislaine Hermanuz, Michael Dennis, Henco Bekkering and Philip Enquist.)
  • The Taubman College lecture series brings distinguished practitioners and academics from around the world to present and debate important issues about design. The recent Michigan Debates on Urbanism, for example, included designers and critics Peter Eisenman, Peter Calthorpe, Lars Lerup, Margaret Crawford, and Michael Speaks, who discussed the topics of Everyday, New, Post, and ReUrbanism.
  • Taubman College Architecture and Planning Programs offering both wide-ranging courses that may be taken by qualified MUD students and special events, seminars, lectures, and exhibitions that are open to all Taubman College students.