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Radburn is modeled after the Garden City concept conceived by Ebenezer Howard in early 20th-century England.  The cities of Letchworth and Welwyn were developed to combine the best features of town and country life as an alternative to the continuous sprawl of the industrial city.  The Garden City concept called for the linking of the central city with the garden city by railway while the two separated by open country.  Radburn, and later the Greenbelt towns under the New Deal, were created off these principles.

In combining the best of town and country, Stien and Wright's plan called for homes to face common walkways and parks free of motor traffic.  Furthermore, the automobile traffic was restricted to main roads and short service courts (today's cul-de-sac) that served individual homes.  Each home had a garage, located at the rear of the home along with the kitchen and other service-oriented areas of the home.  The rear of each home faced the service courts. 

Interestingly enough, although Clarence Stein and Henry Wright planned for Radburn as a "city for the motor age," the emphasis was actually not place on the private automobile.  While the plan did acknowledge the fact that the car was becoming a way of life, Radburn sought to integrate both the pedestrian and motor vehicle into a liveable plan, rather than focus completely on the private automobile as the only means of moving about, as most of the later suburbs did.  A network of walking paths linking the homes with parks, schools, and other community amenities was provided.  And where the pedestrian was expected to cross the busy streets, the walking path went either over or under, avoiding conflict with motor traffic. 

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    R A D B U R N       
            F A I R   L A W N ,   N .  J .

Location:  Borough of Fair Lawn in Bergen County, N.J.

Constructed by City Housing Corporation.  City Housing Corp. was established in 1924 to develop Sunnyside Gardens in Queens, N.Y.

Opened for sales in 1928.

First residents take occupancy in 1929.

Construction closed out around 1933 when City Housing Corporation dissolved.

Originally planned for a much larger community extending into adjoining tracts in the Boroughs of Glen Rock and Paramus, the onset of the Depression halted Radburn in its orginal form after completing only three sections in Fair Lawn.

xxx homes planned.

xxx homes constructed.

Official web site for the Community of Radburn.