Urban Renewal North and South: The Case of São Paulo and New York During and After WWII

by Marcio Siwi

Jan 1, 2014
When Nelson Rockefeller arrived at the São Paulo airport on June 18, 1969, as the head of Richard Nixon's Presidential Mission to Latin America, he delivered a statement that must have thrilled his paulistano hosts -- especially those who looked to New York as a model city. In addition to calling São Paulo Latin America's most modern industrial center and the world's fastest growing city, among other superlatives associated with the city at the time, Rockefeller went on to say that the usual comparisons between São Paulo and Chicago were now "out-ofdate." For Rockefeller, the more accurate parallel was between São Paulo and his own New York. Though unusual, the fact that Nelson Rockefeller emphasized the similarities between São Paulo and New York should come as no surprise given that he, and a group of influential politicians, engineers, city planners, architects, and museum directors from both New York and São Paulo, had been working in concert to improve US-Brazil relations and bring the two cities closer together since the early 1940s.
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