This website ( is an anthology of the codes, laws and related documents that have created, or sought to create, particular urban forms. It is a searchable archive drawn from a broad array of historical documents. Documents have been selected from around the world, and from all time periods.
Both legally-binding codes as well as customary rules that may not have involved a governing authority are included. These documents provide a rich cultural resource for urban planners, architects, and all others involved in the construction of place.
The research is led by Emily Talen and supported by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.