top of page

The Scottish Mandate: What is the secret charm of Tel Aviv?

What makes Tel Aviv-Yafo a fun city to live in, is it the beach and the golden sands? Perhaps the bustling nightlife? Or its human scale, which makes it is easy to walk or cycle from one place to another? All of these aspects are important in and of themselves, but it seems that the person responsible for shaping the rare urban experience represented by Tel Aviv-Yafo is actually a Scottish biologist and city planner: Sir Patrick Geddes, the man who in 1927-29 produced a detailed report, which became the city's first master plan. This fundamental layer of hidden infrastructure, upon which the City Center and the Old North were built, enables all these elements to come together - integrating into a whole that defines the city's unique character.

One of the most prominent features of the Geddes Plan is the weight it gives to the green areas; Tel Aviv as a Garden City where every building is surrounded by a small garden, a city with green boulevards and small public gardens designed for its residents. Although most of us tend to ignore its existence, the Tel Aviv vegetation surrounds us wherever we are - revealed among the courtyards of the buildings - and offers charming, noise-free, exhilarating spots. The structure of the Garden City has a profound impact on the feelings and experiences of every person who walks around its streets, sits in the cafes filling it or goes to play with their kids in a close-by garden.

By Leaves We Live, the multidisciplinary project of the White City Center and A N + Architects, includes a published book featuring the original report, as well as essays on garden architecture in general and the Garden City of Tel Aviv in particular, short stories taking place within its gardens, urban nature photography, short catalog of plants, and drawings.

Photos: Aviad Bar-Ness

To purchase the book By Leaves We Live Contact us - 03-6473239


bottom of page