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Ancient Maya Cities of the Eastern Lowlands$
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Brett A. Houk

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780813060637

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: September 2015

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813060637.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM FLORIDA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.florida.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University Press of Florida, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in FLASO for personal use.date: 19 September 2021

Comparisons and Urban Planning

Comparisons and Urban Planning

(p.232) 10 Comparisons and Urban Planning
Ancient Maya Cities of the Eastern Lowlands

Brett A. Houk

Marilyn A. Masson

Michael E. Smith

John W. Janusek

University Press of Florida

This chapter treats the cities covered by this book as a group to consider urban planning in the eastern lowlands. The discussion begins by rank ordering the cities in terms of size and then comparing plazas, carved monuments, ball courts, and causeways to illuminate similarities and differences. The chapter closes by looking at the coordination of buildings within cities and the standardization of cities. The first approach is used to evaluate individual urban plans, while the second looks at a group of cities to identify common planning characteristics. While all of the cities in the sample were planned, the application of this approach suggests that stronger levels of centralized planning were involved at some cities than at others. At either end of the spectrum are more-planned Caracol and less-planned Altun Ha. Ranking the remaining cities is not an easy task, because not only is the planning scale subjective, it appears as if different planning agendas or concepts were at play in the eastern lowlands. Therefore, what may seem less planned may actually be “differently planned.”

Keywords:   urban planning, rank ordering, plazas, Caracol, Altun Ha

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