Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine

Program in Public Health

Review: A City is not a Tree, by Christopher Alexander

by Claire Vernon

A City is not a Tree, an essay by Christopher Alexander, is a concise yet critical look into the social and structural overlap of communities that continues to be relevant to city design over 50 years after its publication. Alexander argues that patterns of overlap in both social and built structures are natural, essential, healthy components of communities. In this review, editor Claire Vernon muses about the relevance of Alexander’s ideas to Chicago’s structure.

Read the full article here.

Art by Andy Schulte, UIC BVIS.


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Claire Vernon 

Claire Vernon is a PhD candidate in the NU DGP studying neuroscience. Her public health interests include women’s health, mental health, and health disparities.