Prince Charles is visiting the U.S. these days. Often derided and always hounded by the media, there seems to be more to Charlie than his love life.
“I’ve been trying to encourage people to think about. … To break the conventional mold in the way we’ve been building and designing for the last, well, during the last century really, has all been part of a throw-away society,” he told a interviewer recently.
His alterternative vision is laid out in bricks and mortar in Poundbury, a village of 2,500 people, which he created on his land near Dorchester in the south of England. All his ideas on architectural design, class structure, aesthetics and ecology are here. And what he sees as the future looks very much like the past: an 18th century village adapted for the 21st.
Single-family homes are mixed with small apartments so there are people of all income levels here living side by side in a community with shops and light industry. The narrow twisty roads discourage automobile traffic, and cars are parked out of sight in landscaped lots.
“The whole of the 20th century has always put the car at the center,” the prince explained. “So by putting the pedestrian first, you create these livable places, I think, with more attraction, and interest and character. Livability.”