Le Corbusier Concept

Le Corbusier was a Swiss-French architect, designer, painter, urban planner, writer, and one of the pioneers of what is now called modern architecture. He was born in Switzerland and became a French citizen in 1930.

Philosophy of Le Corbusier 

  • No matter how open and green, cities should be frankly urban, urban surroundings are to be definitely contrasting with rural surroundings. 
  • Densities are in themselves not a problem. Congestion and slum conditions in the cities are due to excessive coverage, persistence of old street patterns and unrestricted land speculation 
  • Slums exist because of the failure to provide the proper surrounding for high density living. 
  • He protests against strict functionalism. “Human creations that survive are those which produce emotions, and not those which are only useful”.

1) Concentric City 

A city for 3 million people was proposed by Le Corbusier in 1922, which was based on four principles. 
  • Decongestion of the centre of the cities 
  • Augmentation of the density 
  • Enlargement of the means of circulation 
  • Increase in the number of parks and open spaces 

Three Zones in Concentric City 

  • Central city 
  • Protected green belt 
  • Factories and satellite towns
 Concentric city
  • It consists of rectangle containing two cross axial highways. At its heart was a six-level transport interchange – centre for motor, rail lines (underground and main line railways) and roof of which is air-field. 
  • 24 cruciform skyscrapers - 60 storied office building with density 1200 ppa and covers 5% of the ground. 
  • Surrounding skyscrapers was apartment district – 8 storey buildings arranged in zigzag rows with broad open spaces with density of 120 ppa (people per acre). 
  • The buildings in the central area were raised on stilts (pilotis) so as to leave panoramas of unbroken greenery at ground level. 
  • The city espoused space, speed, mass production and efficient organization, but also offered combination of natural and urban environments.


  • Class based conception of life – different classes being separately housed. 
  • Doubts were expressed about the scale and degree of centralization. 
  • Critics attacked its focus on the central city, where land values were highest and dislocations most difficult. 
  • The creation of vast empty spaces in place of close knit streets with their varied civic life.

2) Linear Industrial City

  • Leaving the ‘evils of the sprawling town’, the new industrial communities are located along the main arteries of transportation – water, rail and highway connecting the existing cities
  • Factories are placed along the main arteries, separated from the residential section by the highway and a green strip 
  • The residential areas include the ‘horizontal garden town’ of single houses and vertical apartment buildings with civic center. 
  • Sports, entertainments, shopping and office facilities are distributed in this district and all community facilities are placed within ample open space. 

3) Radiant City 

Le Corbusier rearranged the key features of the concentric city. The basic ideas of free circulation and greenery were still present, but the juxtaposition of different land uses had changed. For example, the central area was now residential instead of a skyscraper office core. 


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