Super City and Beyond

my email inbox is full of the notes I’ve sent myself with reminders of things to write about here, everything from bus stops to illuminated nyc. but here’s one I just saw that trumps all those.  it started when I saw this image and caption in the online slideshow accompanying the New York Times article about author Douglas Coupland buying the mid-century house next to his and restoring it as much as possible  (“Saving the House Next Door“):

Coupland is, according to the caption, gazing upon some structures he built with a 1960s toy construction kit called Super City.  I’d never heard of it!  Things being a bit slow at work (economy &etc), research thus ensued.

Wiki tells us that Super City was made by Ideal Toys in 1967. It was removed from the market in 1968. One year only! Apparently the thing was too fussy and fidgety for kids. Everything just makes me want it more. Probably a choking hazard to boot. Look at this page from the amazing instruction manual:

Trying to teach kids how to read floorplans!  Awesome! (The rest of the manual is here.)


Turns out Coupland had a show at CCA (Montreal’s cool architecture museum) that featured a city he built with the kit. Cool, cool, cool. And that just reminds me how many other great old school construction toys there are out there…  Legos are great and all, but there’s another world of cool stuff on beyond Legos, Erector Sets, and target=”new”Tinker Toys (although those are pretty nifty, too).



This entry was posted on Friday, August 14th, 2009 and is filed under architecture. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.
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2 Responses to “Super City and Beyond”

  1. How awesome

    I’ve told people about this toy all my life only to be met by blank stares. I remember Super City very well and have always looked for people who knew what it was.I was a kid in the late
    60s and loved it. Alas, never saved them. They got thrown out with all the other great toys of that era. So cool that you are giving them the proper place they deserve.

  2. Michel

    I had aSuper city when I was 6 or 7. It was a great toy, very well made(things fits) and had great graphics. And yes I was too young to really enjoy it.