Water and power networks and urban fragmentation in Los Angeles: rethinking assumed mechanisms

Article


MacKillop, Fionn and Boudreau, Julie-Anne. 2008. "Water and power networks and urban fragmentation in Los Angeles: rethinking assumed mechanisms ." Geoforum. 39 (6), pp. 1833-1842. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.geoforum.2008.07.005
Article Title

Water and power networks and urban fragmentation in Los Angeles: rethinking assumed mechanisms

ERA Journal ID2011
Article CategoryArticle
AuthorsMacKillop, Fionn (Author) and Boudreau, Julie-Anne (Author)
Journal TitleGeoforum
Journal Citation39 (6), pp. 1833-1842
Number of Pages10
Year2008
Place of PublicationOxford, United Kingdom
ISSN0016-7185
1872-9398
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1016/j.geoforum.2008.07.005
Abstract

Los Angeles is often described as the epitome of urban fragmentation, a notion which in this context is frequently connected to, or even conflated with urban sprawl. At the same time, the city features integrated water and power networks which have been under public ownership for over 70 years. We thus have an apparent paradox in the context of the debate on 'splintering urbanism', between socio-spatial fragmentation and the integration of networks. In discussing the idea that deregulation of infrastructural networks exacerbates urban fragmentation, the authors use the case of Los Angeles in order to highlight the central role of private interests in management decisions concerning infrastructure networks. The authors carry out their analysis in an historical perspective, revealing that network integration and universal access can often serve private interests more than the public good. Urban fragmentation in Los Angeles, they conclude, is the result of a complex process of instrumentalisation of network development and management.

Keywordsincorporation; integration; Los Angeles; secession; splintering urbanism; sprawl; urban fragmentation; urban networks; water and power networks
ANZSRC Field of Research 2020400508. Infrastructure engineering and asset management
441016. Urban sociology and community studies
330410. Urban analysis and development
Public Notes

Permanent restricted access to published version due to publisher copyright policy.
Dr Fionn MacKillop is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Office of Research, Australian Centre for Sustainable Business and Development, Springfield Campus, E-mail : Fionn.MacKillop@usq.edu.au

Byline AffiliationsDurham University, United Kingdom
National Institute for Scientific Research, Canada
Institution of OriginUniversity of Southern Queensland
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