Can Design Be Devious? The story of the Robert Moses bridges over the Long Island parkways, and other explorations of unexpected political consequences of design

Publication, December 2016

This digital publication explores the story of the planning and politics of a series of overpasses on Long Island, commissioned in the 1920s and 1930s by Robert Moses. The story suggests that the bridges had been designed to prevent the passage of buses, thereby allowing only people who could afford to own a car to access Long Island’s leisure spaces. The possible devious intent of Moses and the transformation of the story in subsequent decades shaped a scholarly debate.

The publication accompanies the film Misleading Innocence (tracing what a bridge can do), conceived of by Francesco Garutti and directed by Shahab Mihandoust. It points to the complexity of the topic and the elusiveness of clear answers by presenting objects and documents that Francesco Garutti encountered during research. Essays and a conversation deepen the analysis and widen the scope beyond the case of the bridges.

Francesco Garutti
Essays by Matthew Gandy and Antony Hudek
Conversation between Stephan Graham, Albena Yaneva, and Francesco Garutti
Graphic design and development by Linked by Air

Digital publication
Available on our online bookstore and on iTunes

Related film


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