Interesting read.He didn’t want to be constrained by the old methods of social science, and he had little patience for the unconstrained speculations of architects. (West considers urban theory to be a field without principles, comparing it to physics before Kepler pioneered the laws of planetary motion in the 17th century.) Instead, West wanted to begin with a blank page, to study cities as if they had never been studied before. He was tired of urban theory — he wanted to invent urban science.
It’s when West switches the conversation from infrastructure to people that he brings up the work of Jane Jacobs,
While listening to West talk about cities, it’s easy to forget that his confident pronouncements are mere correlations, and that his statistics can only hint at possible explanations. Not surprisingly, many urban theorists disagree with West’s conclusions.