City on a Grid by Gerard Koeppel


New York Society Library
Winner 2015 NYC Books Award

Top 10 Books of 2015

The Bowery Boys
Ten Favorite
NYC History Books
of 2015

“The foundation of the city is its spatial organization, the way its streets meet and the way its citizens travel on them. Gerard Koeppel’s “City on a Grid” (Da Capo) tells the too little-known tale of how and why Manhattan came to be the waffle-board city we know. He shows us that the grid, far from being a long-range plan imposed by a class of managers, was the result more of a shrug, an inconclusive meeting, and a big “Why not?” — Adam Gopnik, The New YorkerRarely does one come across a book that makes you rethink the city you thought you knew … . Koeppel’s masterful story-telling does that and more.” — Kate Ascher, author of The Works: Anatomy of a City

“I’ve spent most of my life walking the straight lines of the world’s greatest city, and have never thought to ask: Is this a different shape from other cities, and if so, why, and who did it? Koeppel’s book answers these questions, in an easygoing, good-humored manner, with interesting facts unearthed on nearly every page. This is one of those books you always wished would be written, and here it is. Indispensable for anyone interested in the history of New York and cities generally, and bound to fuel cocktail conversations up, down, and across the city for years to come.”
— David Duchovny, actor, author, native New Yorker

Recent articles & appearances

Gotham blog READ

The Huffington Post READ

New York Genealogical & Biographical Record READ

New York Times READ

The Real Deal LINK





Phi Beta Kappa The Key Reporter LINK

NYPL Archives –TWEET

Talk at Martayan Lan, NYC WATCH

PBS Thirteen – Metrofocus LINK

The Leonard Lopate Show – Jan 21, 2015

Roth on Wesleyan READ

The New York Times Sunday Book Review READ

The Wall Street Journal READ
Review by David Freeland
(not inside the wsj pay wall? google: koeppel grid wsj — the first result will be the article; click on it and you should get in)

The New York Times – Bookshelf READ
Review by Sam Roberts

The New Yorker READ
“Naked Cities: The death and life of urban America.” by Adam Gopnik