Urban Fringes: Conquering Riversides and Lakeshores in the Nineteenth Century – Examples from Austrian and Swiss Medium-Sized Cities

Rohr, Christian (2019). Urban Fringes: Conquering Riversides and Lakeshores in the Nineteenth Century – Examples from Austrian and Swiss Medium-Sized Cities. In: Soens, Tim; Schott, Dieter; Toyka-Seid, Michael; De Munck, Bert (eds.) Urbanizing Nature. Actors and Agency (Dis)Connecting Cities and Nature since 1500. Routledge Advances in Urban History (pp. 241-260). New York, Abington: Routledge

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The second half of the 19th century constitutes a very dynamic period of urban growth. In many cities the flood plains between the rivers or lakeshores and the historic city centre had been occupied by upper middle class bourgeoisie. Living near the water without a professional need can be seen as an attempt to integrate elements of ‘nature’ into the blueprint of a city. A free view on ‘nature’ (represented by the water) became fashionable both for residents and upper class tourists. However, bourgeoisie often had been quite careless in their search for ‘nature’ and was then hit by floods. In this paper, two examples are examined in detail: the Austrian city of Wels, situated by the Traun River, and the Swiss city of Lucerne, situated by Lake Lucerne (Vierwaldstättersee). The chapter asks, who were the human and non-human actors creating this absence of flood risk, and how important was the specifically urban context is for this development by looking at the discourse on urban planning and flood control. Furthermore, it is examined to what extent those floods served as further argument for better flood protection? Besides written sources, paintings and maps, a focus is also given to early photography representing this new way of urban living.

Item Type:

Book Section (Book Chapter)

Division/Institute:

06 Faculty of Humanities > Department of History and Archaeology > Institute of History
06 Faculty of Humanities > Department of History and Archaeology > Institute of History > Economic, Social and Environmental History

UniBE Contributor:

Rohr, Christian

Subjects:

900 History
900 History > 940 History of Europe

ISBN:

978-0367-11086-4

Series:

Routledge Advances in Urban History

Publisher:

Routledge

Language:

English

Submitter:

Christian Rohr

Date Deposited:

25 Apr 2019 15:44

Last Modified:

25 Apr 2019 15:44

Uncontrolled Keywords:

Urban development, riverside, lakeshore, floods, 1840-1914

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/127602

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