You can neither lie to a neighbourhood park, nor reason with it. Artist’s conceptions and persuasive renderings can put pictures of life into proposed neighbourhood parks or park malls, and verbal rationalizations can conjure up users who ought to appreciate them, but in real life only diverse surroundings have the practical power of inducing a natural, continuing flow of life and use.
Introduction, American years, Interview, Works, Criticism, Further Reading
Jane Jacobs was an American-Canadian writer and activist with primary interest in communities and urban planning and decay. She is best known for The Death and Life of Great American Cities, a powerful critique of the urban renewal policies of the 1950s in the United States. The book has been described as “one of 20th-century architecture’s most traumatic events”, but also credited with reaching beyond planning issues to influence the spirit of the times. ¶ Alongwith her well-known printed works, Jacobs is equally well known for organizing grassroots efforts to block urban-renewal projects that would have destroyed local neighborhoods. She was instrumental in the eventual cancellation of the Lower Manhattan Expressway, and after moving to Canada in 1968, equally influential in cancelling the Spadina Expressway and the associated network of expressways in Toronto planned and under construction.

“For the first time I liked school and for the first time I made good marks”

Jane Butzner was born in Scranton, Pennsylvania, the daughter of a doctor and a former teacher and nurse, who were Protestant in a heavily Roman Catholic town. After graduating from Scranton’s Central High School, she took an unpaid position as the assistant to the women’s page editor at the Scranton Tribune. A year later, in the middle of the Great Depression, she left Scranton for New York City. During her first several years in the city, Jacobs held a variety of jobs, working mainly as a stenographer and freelance writer, often writing about working districts in the city. These experiences, she later said "gave me more of a notion of what was going on in the city and what business was like, what work was like." Her first job was for a trade magazine, first as a secretary, then as an editor. She also sold articles to the Sunday Herald Tribune. She then became a feature writer for the Office of War Information. While working there she met an architect named Robert Hyde Jacobs whom she married in 1944. Together they had two sons, James and Ned, and a daughter, Burgin. She studied at Columbia University’s School of General Studies for two years, taking courses in geology, zoology, law, political science, and economics. About the freedom to study her wide-ranging interests, she said

For the first time I liked school and for the first time I made good marks. This was almost my undoing because after I had garnered, statistically, a certain number of credits I became the property of Barnard College at Columbia, a to take, it seemed, what Barnard wanted me to take, not what I wanted to learn. Fortunately my high-school marks had been so bad that Barnard decided I could not belong to it and I was therefore allowed to continue getting an education.

On March 25, 1952, Jacobs responded to Conrad E. Snow, chairman of the Loyalty Security Board at the United States. Department of State. In her foreword to her answer she said

The other threat to the security of our tradition, I believe, lies at home. It is the current fear of radical ideas and of people who propound them. I do not agree with the extremists of either the left or the right, but I think they should be allowed to speak and to publish, both because they themselves have, and ought to have, rights, and once their rights are gone, the rights of the rest of us are hardly safe

Opposing expressways and supporting neighborhoods were common themes in her life. In 1962, she was the chairperson of the “Joint Committee to Stop the Lower Manhattan Expressway”, when the downtown expressway plan was killed. She was again involved in stopping the Lower Manhattan Expressway and was arrested during a demonstration on April 10, 1968. Jacobs opposed Robert Moses, who had already forced through the Cross- Bronx Expressway and other roadways against neighborhood opposition. A late 1990s Public Broadcasting Service [PBS] documentary series on New York’s history devoted a full hour of its fourteen hours to the battle between Moses and Jacobs, although Robert Caro’s highly critical biography of Moses, The Power Broker, gives only passing mention to this event, despite Jacobs’s strong influence on Caro.


Jane Jacobs

What do you think you’ll be remembered for most? You were the one who stood up to the federal bulldozers and the urban renewal people and said they were destroying the lifeblood of these cities. Is that what it will be?

No. If I were to be remembered as a really important thinker of the century, the most important thing I’ve contributed is my discussion of what makes economic expansion happen. This is something that has puzzled people always. I think I’ve figured out what it is.¶ Expansion and development are two different things. Development is differentiation of what already existed. Practically every new thing that happens is a differentiation of a previous thing, from a new shoe sole to changes in legal codes. Expansion is an actual growth in size or volume of activity. That is a different thing.¶ I’ve gone at it two different ways. Way back when I wrote The Economy of Cities, I wrote about import replacing and how that expands, not just the economy of the place where it occurs, but economic life altogether. As a city replaces imports, it shifts its imports. It doesn’t import less. And yet it has everything it had before.

It’s not a zero-sum game. It’s a bigger, growing pie.

That’s the actual mechanism of it. The theory of it is what I explain in The Nature of Economies. I equate it to what happens with biomass, the sum total of all flora and fauna in an area. The energy, the material that’s involved in this, doesn’t just escape the community as an export. It continues being used in a community, just as in a rainforest the waste from certain organisms and various plants and animals gets used by other ones in the place.

The Death and Life of Great American Cities [excerpt]

One son and his family live right down the block, though, and see her often. She is 83 now, and was a little incapacitated from knee surgery when I stopped by on a bright September afternoon this year.

The inside of her house was pretty pure Sixties Bohemian Intellectual. The Jacobs had removed some interior walls, so the first floor kitchen, dining room, and living room all flowed together. There was a great groaning wall of books, of course, and other surfaces were still painted the bright colors of the Go-Go era, when the family moved there. Near the bay window in front she displaye a native-American breastplate and her tablecloth in the dining room was a bold aboriginal print. There were drawings by her daughter, who lives in the backwoods of British Columbia, and lots of family photographs everywhere. Her office is a spare bedroom upstairs in the rear where it is especially quiet.

Ms. Jacobs still looks like that famous photo of her taken in the White Horse tavern in the West Village three dacades ago [a cigarette in one hand and a beer mug in the other]. Her hair is the same silvery helmet with bangs, and her big eyeglasses emphasize her role as the ever-penetrating observer, with an impish overlay. She still likes to drink beer, and worked on a bottle of some dark local brew while we talked. She was alert, humorous, and apart from her injured knee seemed to be in fine condition.

Jane Jacobs grew up in Scranton, Pa., the daughter of a doctor and a school- teacher. She worked briefly as a reporter for the Scranton Tribune and then went to New York City, where she plugged away as a freelance writer until she landed a staff job with Architectural Forum in 1952. The job gave her a priviliged perch for observing the fiasco of post-war “urban renewal” and Death and Life of Greatings by her daughter, who lives in the backwoods of British Columbia, and lots of family photographs everywhere. Her office is a spare bedroom upstairs in the rear where it is especially quiet.

Ms. Jacobs still looks like that famous photo of her taken in the White Horse tavern in the West Village three dacades ago [a cigarette in one hand and a beer mug in the other]. Her hair is the same silvery helmet with bangs, and her big eyeglasses emphasize her role as the ever-penetrating observer, with an impish overlay. She still likes to drink beer,ings by her daughter, who lives in the backwoods of British Columbia...

The Death and Life of Great American Cities The book is her single-most influential book and possibly the most influential American book on urban planning and cities. Widely read by both planning professionals and the general public, the book is a strong critique of the urban renewal policies of the 1950s, which, she claimed, destroyed communities and created isolated, unnatural urban spaces.

The Economy of Cities The thesis of this book is that cities are the primary drivers of economic development. Her main argument is that explosive economic growth derives from urban import replacement. Import replacement occurs when a city begins to locally produce goods that it formerly imported, e.g., Tokyo bicycle factories replacing Tokyo bicycle importers in the 1800s.

The Question of Separatism: Quebec and the Struggle over Sovereignty The book incorporated and expanded Jacobs’ presentation of the 1979 Massey Lectures, entitled Canadian Cities and Sovereignty-Association. Published in 1980 and reprinted in 2011 with a previously unpublished 2005 interview on the subject, Jacobs’ book advances the view that Quebec’s eventual independence is best for Montreal, Toronto, the rest of Canada, and the world; and that such independence can be achieved peacefully. As precedent, she cites Norway’s secession from Sweden and how it enriched both nations. The origins of the contemporary secessionist- movement in the Quiet Revolution are examined, along with Canada’s historical reliance on natural resources and foreign-owned manufacturingfor its own economic development.

Cities and the Wealth of Nations It attempts to do for economics what The Death and Life of Great American Cities did for modern urban planning, though it has not received the same critical attention. Beginning with a concise treatment of classical economics, this book challenges one of the fundamental assumptions of the greatest economists. Classical (and Neo-classical) economists consider the nation-state to be the main player in macroeconomics. Jacobs argues that it is not the nation-state, rather it is the city which is the true player in this worldwide game. She restates the idea of import replacement from her earlier book The Economy of Cities, while speculating on the further ramifications of considering the city first and the nation second, or not at all.

Systems of Survival The book moves outside of the city, studying the moral underpinnings of work. As with her other work, she used an observational approach. This book is written as a Platonic dialogue. It appears that she (as described by characters in her book) took newspaper clippings of moral judgements related to work, collected and sorted them to find that they fit two patterns of moral behaviour that were mutually exclusive. She calls these two patterns “Moral Syndrome A”, or commercial moral syndrome, and “Moral Syndrome B”, or guardian moral syndrome.

The Nature of Economies A dialog between friends concerning the premise: “human beings exist wholly within nature as part of the natural order in every respect”, argues that the same principles underlie both ecosystems and economies: “development and co-development through differentiations and their combinations; expansion through diverse, multiple uses of energy; and self-maintenance through self- refueling.”
Jacobs was not professionally trained in urban planning; her ideas were developed through personal experience and observation.
The planners and developers that she fought in order to preserve West Greenwich Village were among those who initially criticised her ideas. Robert Moses has generally been identified as her archrival during this period. Since then, Jacobs’ ideas have been analysed many times, often in regards to the outcomes that their influences have produced. In places like West Greenwich Village, the factors that she argued would maintain economic and cultural diversity have instead led to gentrification and some of the most expensive real estate in the world. Arguably, her own white-collar family’s conversion of an old candy shop into a home was indicative of the gentrifying trend that would continue under the influence of Jacob’s ideas. However, gentrification was also caused by “the completely unexpected influx of affluent residents back into the inner city”. The extent to which her ideas facilitated this phenomenon was at the time unimaginable. For example, she advocated the preservation of older buildings specifically because their lack of economic value made them affordable for poor people. In this respect, she saw them as “guarantors of social diversity”. That many of these older structures have increased in economic value solely due to their age was implausible in 1961. Issues of gentrification have dominated criticism of Jane Jacobs’ planning ideas. But her concepts have also been criticised more broadly. For example, although her ideas of planning were praised at times as “universal”, they were criticized as inapplicable when a city grows from one million to ten million

Alexiou, Alice Sparberg. Jane Jacobs: Urban Visionary (2006) New Brunswick: Rutgers. Toronto: HarperCollins.
Flint, Anthony. "Wrestling with Moses" (2009) Random House.
Goldsmith, Stephen A. and Elizabeth, Lynne What We See: Advancing the Observations of Jane Jacobs (2010) Oakland, California: New Village Press.
Klemek, Christopher. The Transatlantic Collapse of Urban Renewal, Postwar Urbanism from New York to Berlin (2011) Chicago: Univ. of Chicago Press.


Mark Rosenfelder (2000) “It's the cities, stupid: Jane Jacobs on cities”.
Peter L. Laurence (2006) “Contradictions and complexities: Jane Jacobs’ and Robert Venturi’s complexity theories”.
Simon Jenkins (2006) Adapt, don't destroy: Leeds is the template to revive our scarred cities.
Peter L. Laurence (2006) “The Death and Life of Urban Design: Jane Jacobs, The Rockefeller Foundation, and the New Research in Urbanism”.
Pierre Desrochers and Gert-Jan Hospers (Spring 2007) “Cities and the Economic Development of Nations: An Essay on Jane Jacobs’.
Pierre Desrochers, “The Death and Life of a Reluctant Urban Icon,” A Review Essay on Jane Jacobs: Urban Visionary by Alice Sparberg Alexiou.
Ellerman, David (2005). “How Do We Grow?: Jane Jacobs on Diversification and Specialization.”
Peter L. Laurence (2007) “Jane Jacobs (1916-2006): Before Death and Life”, Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians.

robert moses

master builder

As the shaper of a modern city, Moses is sometimes compared to Baron Haussmann of Second Empire Paris, and is one of the most polarizing figures in the history of urban planning in the United States. His decisions favoring highways over public transit helped create the modern suburbs of Long Island and influenced a generation of engineers, architects, and urban planners who spread his philosophies across the nation.

Moses was never elected to public office. He was responsible for the creation and leadership of numerous public authorities which he could control without having to answer to the general public or to elected officials. It is due to Moses that New York state has a greater proportion of public benefit corporations than any other US state, making them prime mode of infrastructure building and maintenance in New York, accounting for 90% of the state’s debt. [01]
As head of various authorities, he controlled millions in income from his projects’ revenue generation, such as tolls, and he had the power to issue bonds to borrow vast sums, allowing him to initiate new ventures with little or no approval from legislative bodies. This allowed him to bypass the usual power of the purse as it normally functioned in the United States, and the process of citizen comment on major public works.

Moses’s projects were considered by many to be necessary for the region’s development after being hit hard by the Great Depression. During the height of his powers, New York City participated in the construction of two huge World’s Fairs: one in 1939 and the other in 1964. Moses was also in large part responsible for the United Nations’ decision to headquarter in Manhattan, as opposed to Philadelphia, by helping the state secure the money and land needed for the project. [02]

His supporters believe he made the city viable for the 21st century by building an infrastructure that most people wanted and that has endured. His achievements in urban planning, design, and infrastructure have influenced urban planning in cities throughout the United States.

01. New York's 'shadow government' debt rises to $140 billion. The Post-Standard. Associated Press (Syracuse). September 2, 2009. Retrieved 2010-12-16

02. Caro, Robert. The Power Broker

early life

Early life and rise to power

Moses was born to assimilated German Jewish parents in New Haven, Connecticut. He spent the first nine years of his life living at 83 Dwight Street in New Haven, two blocks from Yale University. In 1897, the Moses family moved to New York City,[03] where they lived on East 46th Street off Fifth Avenue.[04] Moses's father was a successful department store owner and real estate speculator in New Haven. In order for the family to move to New York City, he sold his real estate holdings and store, and then retired from business for the rest of his life.[03] Bella, Moses's mother, was a forceful and brilliant woman, active in the settlement movement, with her own love of building.

After graduating from Yale University and Wadham College, Oxford, and earning a Ph.D. in political science from Columbia University, Moses became attracted to New York City reform politics. At this time a committed idealist, he developed several plans to rid New York of patronage hiring practices, including being the lead author of a 1919 proposal to reorganize the New York state government. None went very far, but Moses, due to his intelligence, caught the notice of Belle Moskowitz, a friend and trusted advisor to Al Smith.

Moses rose to power with Smith and set in motion a sweeping consolidation of the New York state government. This centralization allowed Smith to run a government later used as a model for Roosevelt's New Deal federal government. Moses also received numerous commissions that he carried out extraordinarily well, such as the development of Jones Beach State Park. Displaying a strong command of law as well as matters of engineering, Moses became known for his skill in drafting legislation, and was called "the best bill drafter in Albany".[05] At a time when the public was used to Tammany Hall corruption and incompetence, Moses was seen as a savior of government. Shortly after President Franklin D. Roosevelt's inauguration, the federal government found itself with millions of New Deal tax dollars to spend, yet states and cities had few projects ready. Moses was one of the few local officials who had projects planned and prepared. For that reason, New York City could count on Moses to deliver to it Works Progress Administration (WPA), Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC), and other depression-era funding.


Close associates of Moses claimed that they could keep African Americans from using pools in white neighborhoods by making the water too cold.[06] [07] He actively precluded the use of public transit that would have allowed the non-car-owners to enjoy the elaborate recreation facilities he built.[07]

During the Depression, however, Moses, along with Mayor Fiorello H. La Guardia, was responsible for the construction of ten gigantic pools under the WPA Program. Combined, they could accommodate 66,000 swimmers. This extensive social works program is sometimes attributed to the fact that Moses was an avid swimmer himself. One such pool is McCarren Park Pool in Brooklyn, formerly dry and used only for special cultural events but has since reopened to the public.[08] During the 1920s, Moses sparred with Franklin D. Roosevelt, then head of the Taconic State Park Commission, who favored the prompt construction of a parkway through the Hudson Valley. Moses succeeded in diverting funds to his Long Island parkway projects (the Northern State Parkway, the Southern State Parkway and the Wantagh State Parkway), although the Taconic State Parkway was later completed as well.[09]

03. Caro, page 29

04. DeWan, George (2007). The Master Builder. Long Island History. Newsday. Archived from the original on 2006-12-11. Retrieved 2007-04-04.

05. Caro, Robert A. (July 22, 1974). Annals of Power. The New Yorker. Retrieved 2011-09-01.

06. Powell, Michael (May 6, 2007). A Tale of Two Cities. The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-08-01. "As for the pool-cooling, Mr. Caro interviewed Moses's associates on the record (“You can pretty well keep them out of any pool if you keep the water cold enough,” he quotes Sidney M. Shapiro, a close Moses aide, as saying)."

07. Caro.

08. McCarren Park & Pool. New York City Department of Parks & Recreation. Retrieved 2008-09-01.

09. Taconic State Parkway. Retrieved 2006-05-25.


Triborough Bridge

Robert Moses had power over the construction of all public housing projects, but the one position above all others giving him political power was his chairmanship of the Triborough Bridge Authority.

The Triborough Bridge (now officially the Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Bridge) opened in 1936 and connects the Bronx, Manhattan, and Queens via three separate spans. The legal structure of this particular public authority made it impervious to influence from mayors and governors, due to the language in the bond contracts and multi-year appointments of the Commissioners. While New York City and New York State were perpetually strapped for money, the bridge’s toll revenues amounted to tens of millions of dollars a year. The agency was therefore capable of financing the borrowing of hundreds of millions of dollars, making Moses the only person in New York capable of funding large public construction projects. Toll revenues rose quickly, as traffic on the bridges exceeded all projections. Rather than pay off the bonds, Moses sought other toll projects to build, a cycle that fed on itself.

Brooklyn Battery Bridge

In the late 1930s a municipal controversy raged over whether an additional vehicular link between Brooklyn and lower Manhattan should be a bridge or a tunnel. Bridges can be wider and cheaper but tall ones use more ramp space at landfall than tunnels. A "Brooklyn Battery Bridge" would have destroyed Battery Park and physically encroached on the financial district. The bridge was opposed by the Regional Plan Association, historical preservationists, Wall Street financial interests and property owners, various high society people, construction unions (since a tunnel would give them more work), the Manhattan borough president, Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia, and governor Herbert H. Lehman.

Moses, on the other hand, favored a bridge. It could carry more automobile traffic than a tunnel and would also serve as a visible monument. More traffic meant more tolls, and more tolls meant more money and therefore more power for public improvements. LaGuardia and Lehman, as usual, had no money to spend and the federal government, by this point, felt it had given New York enough. Moses, because of his control of Triborough, had money to spend, and he decided his money could only be spent on a bridge. He also clashed with chief engineer of the project, Ole Singstad, who preferred a tunnel instead of a bridge.

Only a lack of a key Federal approval thwarted the bridge scheme. President Roosevelt ordered the War Department to assert that a bridge in that location, if bombed, would block the East River access to the Brooklyn Navy Yard upstream. A dubious claim for a river already crossed by bridges, it nevertheless stopped Moses. In retaliation for being prevented from building his bridge, Moses dismantled the New York Aquarium that had been in Castle Clinton and moved it to Coney Island in Brooklyn (based on claims that the proposed tunnel would undermine Castle Clinton's foundation). He also attempted to raze Castle Clinton itself and the historic fort's survival was assured only after ownership was transferred to the federal government.

Moses was forced to settle for a tunnel connecting Brooklyn to Lower Manhattan, now called the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel. A 1941 publication from the Triborough Bridge and Tunnel Authority claimed that the government had forced them to build a tunnel at "twice the cost, twice the operating fees, twice the difficulty to engineer, and half the traffic," though engineering studies did not support this conclusion, and a tunnel may have held many of the advantages Moses publicly tried to attach to the bridge option. Ultimately, this was not the first time that Moses tried to carry out the bridge option when a tunnel was already in progress. The same issue also occurred when the Queens-Midtown Tunnel was being planned, in which he also clashed with Ole Singstad and tried to upstage the Tunnel Authority. [10] For the same reasons, Moses also preferred a bridge crossing, but with no luck since the bridge was not supported by many officials.[10]

10. Queens-Midtown Tunnel. Retrieved 2010-08-01.

post-war city planning

Moses’s power increased after World War II, when, after the retirement of LaGuardia, a series of mayors consented to almost all of Moses’s proposals. Named city “construction coordinator”, in 1946, by Mayor William O’Dwyer, Moses also became the official representative of New York City in Washington, D.C. Moses was also now given powers over public housing that had eluded him under LaGuardia. Moses’s power grew even more when O’Dwyer was forced to resign in disgrace and was succeeded by Vincent R. Impellitteri, who was more than content to allow Moses to exercise control over infrastructure projects from behind the scenes.

One of Moses’s first steps after Impellitteri took office was killing the development of a city-wide Comprehensive Zoning Plan, underway since 1938, that would have restrained his nearly uninhibited power to build within the city, and removing the existing Zoning Commissioner from power. Impellitteri enabled Moses in other ways, too. Moses was now the sole person authorized to negotiate in Washington for New York City projects. He could now remake New York for the automobile. By 1959, Moses had built 28,000 apartment units on hundreds of acres. In clearing the land for high-rises in accordance with the tower in a park scheme, which at that time was seen as innovative and beneficial, he sometimes destroyed almost as many housing units as he built.

From the 1930s to the 1960s, Robert Moses was responsible for the construction of the Throgs Neck, the Bronx-Whitestone, the Henry Hudson, and the Verrazano Narrows bridges. His other projects included the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway, the Staten Island Expressway, the Cross-Bronx Expressway, the Belt Parkway, the Laurelton Parkway, and many more. Federal interest had shifted from parkway to freeway systems, and the new roads mostly conformed to the new vision, lacking the landscaping or the commercial traffic restrictions of the pre-war ones. He was the mover behind Shea Stadium and Lincoln Center, and contributed to the United Nations headquarters. Moses had direct influence outside the New York area as well. City planners in many smaller American cities hired Moses to design freeway networks for them in the 1940s and early 1950s. Few of these were built; initially postponed for lack of funding, projects still unbuilt by the 1960s were often defeated by the awakening citizen-led opposition movement. The first successful examples of these freeway revolts were in New Orleans. Original plans for Interstate 10 followed U.S. Route 90 through Uptown, but instead the Interstate through the western part of the city was routed along the Pontchartrain Expressway.

Following that adjustment was the blocking of New Orleans’ Vieux Carré Riverfront Expressway, an elevated highway that would have sliced through the French Quarter, resulting in an even greater impact on the city’s sense of history. Later, successful freeway revolts that saw highway projects either scaled back or cancelled outright also occurred in Portland, Oregon (see Mount Hood Freeway and Harbor Drive), San Francisco, San Diego, Washington, D.C., Baltimore, Phoenix, Memphis, Toronto,[11] and eventually Los Angeles.[ [12] class="rm_inline_side_number">13] Moses was more successful with some design elements of the Penn-Lincoln Parkway in Pittsburgh during the city’s Renaissance Project, but wanted a beacon at Point State Park instead of the fountain that would eventually go there.[14]

11. Houpt, Simon (February 5, 2007). Moses vs. Jacobs plays again. The Globe and Mail (Toronto). Archived from the original on 2007-09-30. Retrieved 2007-03-03.

12. In 1969, Jane Jacobs helped spearhead opposition in Toronto, Ontario against the Spadina Expressway.

13. Doig (1990).


Moses’s reputation began to wane in the 1960s as public debate on urban planning began to focus on the virtues of intimate neighborhoods and smallness of scale. Around this time, Moses also started picking political battles he could not win. People had come to see Moses as a bully who disregarded public input.

Further reading

Ballon, Hilary, Robert Moses and the Modern City:The Transformation of New York(NY: Norton, 2007).

Caro, Robert A., The Power Broker: Robert Moses and the fall of New York, New York: Knopf, 1974. hardcover: ISBN 0-394-48076-7, Vintage paperback: ISBN 0-394-72024-5

Berman, Marshall, All That is Solid Melts into Air: The Experience of Modernity, New York: Viking Penguin, 1988.

Jameson W. Doig, "Regional Conflict in the New York Metropolis: The Legend of Robert Moses and the Power of the Port Authority," Urban Studies Volume 27, Number 2 / April 1990 pp 201–232

Kenneth T. Jackson and Hillary Ballon, eds. Robert Moses and the Modern City: The Transformation of New York (W. W. Norton, 2007)

Lewis, Eugene, Public Entrepreneurship : toward a theory of bureaucratic political power—the organizational lives of Hyman Rickover, J. Edgar Hoover, and Robert Moses, Bloomington, Indiana: Indiana University Press, 1980.

Rodgers, Cleveland, "Robert Moses: An Atlantic Portrait", The Atlantic, February 1939

Rodgers, Cleveland, Robert Moses, Builder for Democracy, New York: Holt, 1952.

Krieg, Joann P. Robert Moses: Single-Minded Genius, Interlaken, New York: Heart of the Lakes Publishing, 1989.

Vidal, Gore. "What Robert Moses Did to New York City" New York Review of Books, October 17,

1974. Also found in "United States: Essays 1952-1992" Gore Vidal, Random House, 1993.