Demystified territories: city versus countryside in Andrea Branzi’s urban models

Pablo Martinez Capdevila

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


This chapter analyzes the relationship between city and countryside in the urban proposals by Italian architect Andrea Branzi (Florence 1938). It starts by examining the No-Stop City (1969–71) a project that arose from a political critique of the capitalist city aimed at demystifying it, that is, at making the hidden structures of the capitalist system visible. While this uncommon agenda entailed a radical reconsideration of the territory, implying the end of the city–countryside dialectic, it is argued that the proposal is ultimately ambiguous about the outcomes of such radical shift. The chapter goes to examine Agronica (1995), a later urban model by Branzi that poses a decided hybridization of city and countryside. Despite the stark differences between the two, it is claimed that Agronica can be read as a logical evolution of the No-Stop City that clarifies some of its contradictions. Finally, it is argued that the politically rooted realism underpinning the No-Stop City opened the door to an original and inspiring territorial vision that could allow us to reconsider, not only the relations between urban and rural, or between artificial and natural but, even, the very nature of these categories.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPlanning Cities with Nature
Subtitle of host publicationTheories, Strategies and Methods
EditorsFabiano Lemes de Oliveira, Ian Mell
Place of PublicationCham, Switzerland
PublisherSpringer International Publishing
Number of pages15
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-030-01866-5
ISBN (Print)978-3-030-01865-8
Publication statusPublished - 3 Feb 2019

Publication series

NameCities and Nature
ISSN (Print)2520-8306
ISSN (Electronic)2520-8314


  • Archizoom
  • Andrea Branzi
  • Agronica
  • No-Stop City
  • Marxism
  • Realism


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