Robert Moses and the Modern City

Remaking the Metropolis

December 1, 2006 - March 25, 2007

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Explore the modernist vision of a colossal figure in urban planning.

Robert Moses had a greater impact on the physical character of New York than any other individual in the city’s history. During his reign as New York’s master builder, from 1934 to 1968, Moses developed a vast program that sought to modernize the city’s infrastructure, expand the public realm with recreational facilities, and remove blight from residential districts. Robert Moses and the Modern City: Remaking the Metropolis examines the extensive physical transformation of New York guided by Moses, focused on his major initiatives, including highway construction and slum clearance. Though he believed these undertakings embodied progress and made the city more efficient, his projects disrupted and sometimes razed neighborhoods and increased the city’s dependence on the automobile. The exhibition, employing documents, photographs, publicity brochures, and three-dimensional models, explores Moses's modernist vision and considers the controversial debates surrounding his legacy.


Support for Robert Moses and the Modern City: Remaking the Metropolis is provided by Susan and Roger Hertog, the Lily Auchincloss Foundation, Studley, Inc., David Rockefeller, The Durst Organization, Deban and Tom Flexner, David Rockefeller, the General Contractors Association of New York Inc., the Richard Ravitch Foundation, the New York Building Congress, the 42nd Street Development Corporation/The 42nd Street Fund, and the New York Council for the Humanities. (The New York Council for the Humanities is a state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities. Any views, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in the exhibition do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities. This program is made possible with public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts, a state agency.)

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