There's a common belief among the current generation of planners that planning in the 1950s was focused on transforming the built environment of the country to a suburban form, and finding the most efficient way to move cars around from Point A to Point B.
In researching previous comprehensive planning efforts for a report I'm working on, I found a plan for the region from 1959, a time when suburbanization was in full swing. Many policies recommended by the plan, though, seem quite progressive for their time. In fact, they could be policies one would see in a New Urbanist-oriented plan. A few examples:
See the responses here.