Twenty Minutes in Manhattan

Friday, March 15, 2013

Architect Michael Sorkin talking with Brian Lehrer

This interview originally aired live on March 15, 2013. An edited version was re-aired on August 9, 2013 as part of a special episode of The Brian Lehrer Show. 

Architect and urban planner Michael Sorkin, gives the architectural history of the city as he describes his twenty-minute walk from home to office in his book, Twenty Minutes in Manhattan.


Michael Sorkin

Comments [12]

ds from NY

So much hate for Modernism. One of the main reasons I was attracted to come to NY was its iconic skyline. I couldn't care less for rows of boring 3 or 4-story brick buildings all over town. And bringing up Jacobs book? The uninformed, America-centered rubbish that ignores development of urbanism between Roman times and whenever Greenwich Village became what it is, a book that promotes an idea that parks are bad. One should look a bit around the world and see other options, where modernism was successfully integrate into cities, and where parks are actually enjoyable places.

Aug. 09 2013 11:03 AM
Jf from The future

All modern architecture is disgusting and dystopian. Big and cheap and rectangular. Iit makes me loose my will to live. Yes all staircases should be accessable to anyone for exercise and rooftops should be public parks or at least yards.utopian,architecture is eclectic from all times and cute, like in japan.

Mar. 15 2013 12:16 PM
Bob from Brooklyn

Great show today, Brian.

Mar. 15 2013 12:02 PM
Mark from Brooklyn

Have you noticed the steepness of the new stairs in the renovated Fulton Street Subway Station? Extremely difficult for anyone over fifty to climb.

Mar. 15 2013 11:58 AM
shaneeza from brooklyn

curious to know who he would vote for in the next mayoral election

Mar. 15 2013 11:54 AM
Bob from Brooklyn

Is there anyway we can kick Trump out of the city? Country?

Mar. 15 2013 11:53 AM
antonio from bayside

Incorporate streetcars, light-rails, pedestrian walkways! PARKS!!!!

Mar. 15 2013 11:53 AM
Bobby Bonilla

Love this idea of stairs in communal life in cities. What does an outdoor staircase style to upper floors in Montreal say about communal life there?

Mar. 15 2013 11:51 AM

BTW: Carroll Gardens is in Brooklyn.
I like books that use one story as a jumping off point to another story. Especially if it's historic in nature. I'll check it out.
Is he giving a talk somewhere?

Mar. 15 2013 11:50 AM
Bob from Brooklyn

I like stairs too.

Mar. 15 2013 11:49 AM
Aaron from Carroll Gardens / Wall Street

This is a great book -- as many others have noted, Sorkin's book calls to mind the seminal "Death and Life of Great American Cities" by Jane Jacobs. In a perfect world, Sorkin would be New York City's Urbanism Czar -- his ideas need more traction, more movement toward implementation!

Mar. 15 2013 11:40 AM
Mike from Tribeca

One of the great pleasures of living in downtown Manhattan is showing off our lovely historic buildings to visitors. The people may have changed over the years, but the stones live to tell their tales.

Mar. 15 2013 11:03 AM

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