This book investigates the characteristics of today's built environment: no longer simply a city but increasingly large conurbations made up of a number of development clusters, linked by transport routes. The diffusion of the once compact city into a city web, the 'meta city' is mirrored by changes in society from communities with strong social cohesion and interest in their towns and cities to individuals pursuing their own goals, with global social links and little interest in their own town or city other than the quality of their personal space. The account is complex and on a number of levels; social, philosophical, economic and environmental. The difficulties in managing or even controlling the city web, divided arbitrarily into areas of limited size and political power, are enormous. Areas compete with each other rather than co-operate. The book provides a better understanding of this new type of urban form and argues for a change in planning systems for better management.