What Makes a Successful Urban Skyline?

Authors: Donald Zeigler*, Old Dominion University
Topics: Urban Geography, Landscape, Cultural Geography
Keywords: skyline, landscape, power of place, cities
Session Type: Virtual Poster
Day: 4/8/2021
Start / End Time: 9:35 AM / 10:50 AM
Room: Virtual 52
Presentation Link: Open in New Window
Presentation File: Download



The 21st century has lifted the urban skylines of the United States and Canada ever higher, but, more importantly, has inspired cities to manage their skylines as creative resources for managing national and international identities. This poster presents eight criteria for judging a successful urban skyline: (1) vertical extensibility, (2) signature towers, (3) a group-hug gestalt, (4) a frame for the tableau, (5) canyons of open space, (6) a night-time alter ego, (7) a sedge of cranes, and (8) opportunities for public access. The following city skylines are featured: New York, Chicago, Toronto, Boston, San Francisco, Honolulu, Winnipeg, and Norfolk.

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