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10 Questions with @ShitGardens

Are you tired of oversaturated beach scenes, breathy clouds of flowers, and manicured contemporary plazas filling your Instagram feed? Head over to @shitgardens, the popular Instagram feed where Bede Brennan and James Hull present images of landscapes that won’t be winning any beautification awards. We had the opportunity to ask @shitgardens a series of questions about their work. These guys focus on landscapes that don’t make it into glossy design magazines or landscape architecture textbooks. Pay attention, you might learn something – and get some good laughs along the way. Make sure to give them a follow @shitgardens on Instagram – and buy their book, Shitgardens. What makes a @ShitGarden? How do you define it? There is a spectrum. For us, shit is often a term of endearment,...Read More

How to Avoid the Pitfalls of Gentrification

Gentrification is a term that emerged in the mid-1960s to explain the demographic and social changes that some neighborhoods in the London were experiencing. Since then, a vast number of articles and essays on urban transformation have sought to explain this phenomenon. In this article, we shall explore how to detect areas that are likely to be affected by this process, how to identify those that are already being affected and how to prevent this from happening to preserve heterogeneity, social inclusion, and sustainability in our cities. But what exactly is gentrification? The word gentrification coming from the English syllable “gentry”, refers to the British rural nobility. Gentrification was originally coined to describe the emergence of middle-to-higher-income social group...Read More

Flooding by Design

As volatile weather events increasingly become the norm, the importance of designing to support dynamic ecological processes – and proactive planning not just for operations and maintenance, but for the inevitable, ensuing recovery efforts – has never been more critical. A pioneering project in China’s Hunan Province, the Baxi Island River Forest exemplifies both the importance of designing in harmony with nature as well as the tremendous challenges associated with changing climates and rising water levels. The project was conceived as a catalyst to regional development and eco-tourism within the larger Dawang Mountain Development Zone. One of 16 islands along the Xiang River in Changsha, the 156-acre Baxi Island had for many years been a private island sandbar covered with poplar trees an...Read More

UT Austin [Land8x8 Video]

As the Graduate Program in Landscape Architecture celebrates the completion of its 15th year at the University of Texas at Austin, Director Hope Hasbrouck reflects on the radical change the program has experienced since its establishment. This transformation, Hasbrouck explains, is in response to the changing context of landscape architectural design. As perspectives within the profession shift to re-orient design goals from program to performance, research and academia topics have expanded to explore the dynamics of urban systems, historical and theoretical basis for design approach, and the complexities of multidisciplinary projects. During her presentation at the Land8x8 Lightning Talks in Austin, TX, Hasbrouck shared five words she is seeing in academia that she believes will guide the...Read More

ASLA 2019: A Celebration of Authenticity, A Reminder of Harmony

The ASLA Conference on Landscape Architecture often feels like homecoming. Running around with 6,000-some of your colleagues, friends old and new, it’s almost impossible not to feel more educated, inspired, excited, and empowered. This year we celebrated, discussed, and challenged landscape architecture – how we perceive it, shape it, and share it – in sunny San Diego in November. With over 120 education opportunities, 14 special events, and 350 exhibitors gathered in concert, there is always something to do, something to see, something to learn, and someone to meet. With a wide range of topics varying from sustainable materials, BIM (Building Information Modeling), extending to identity and culture in our practice, this year’s conference felt especially powerful, timely, and i...Read More

Land8 Social Media Awards in Landscape Architecture 2019 – Winners!

Announcing the winners of the 2nd Annual Land8 Social Media Awards in Landscape Architecture! Social media has the power to significantly increase the awareness and importance of the profession of landscape architecture, and Land8 believes industry leaders in social media should be promoted and recognized. Be sure to follow the winners to help grow and promote the profession! Top 10 Social Media Accounts – Landscape Architecture Firms TBG Partners – A leader in the social media scene, TBG shows that landscape architects are powerful connectors – in cities and on projects – and showcases the scales in which they work, from macro to micro. At TBG, they make a concerted effort to demystify what it is that landscape architects do and educate followers on ALL aspects of landscape architec...Read More

5 Reasons Why You Should Go to LABash 2020

LABash is an annual, student-run landscape architecture conference that brings together students and professionals in the field for a weekend of educational sessions, keynote lectures, social events, networking, and career-building. This year, for the 50th anniversary of the conference, LABash is being held at Cornell University in Ithaca, NY. During the weekend of April 2-4, students and professionals from across the country will come together to celebrate the theme “Rise Above Run” and hear first-hand from professionals about how they have overcome obstacles relating to the environment and social justice through the power of design. LABash is so much more than a conference – it is a sneak-peak into the future of landscape architecture. It is reassurance that the next generation of ...Read More

Leveraging Inevitabilities [Land8x8 Video]

“The future of landscape architecture includes me,” proclaims Katie Coyne, Certified Ecologist and Principal at Asakura Robinson, a planning, urban design, and landscape architecture firm. With a background in both ecology and community planning and sustainable design, Coyne leads the Urban Ecology Studio at Asakura Robinson, working alongside planners and design professionals to incorporate resilient design principles into the firm’s work. While Coyne works alongside landscape architects, she is not a professionally trained landscape architect, so when asked to present on the topic of “Next Practices in Landscape Architecture” for the Land8x8 Lightning Talks in Austin, TX, Coyne considered the economic, cultural, social, and ecological goals that must be balanced for a resilient future an...Read More

10 Questions with @thelandscapeofmemes

Those clever landscape architect memes your friends are sharing? They’re probably from the new instagram phenomenon @thelandscapeofmemes. Land8 had the opportunity to ask @thelandscapeofmemes a series of questions about their work. Here’s your chance to learn from a meme master who thinks seriously about the possibilities of our profession. Make sure to give them a follow @thelandscapeofmemes on Instagram or Twitter. What instigated @thelandscapeofmemes? I’m an avid viewer of memes and one day I randomly decided to search “landscape/landscape architecture memes” and what I saw was… interesting. I’d seen so many funny meme accounts for architecture, graphic design, medicine etc and I would always think, “It would be cool if there was a decent, relevant meme page dedicated to lan...Read More

How Public Open Space Reactivates the City

Public open spaces are vital for understanding cities. They are the main environments for citizens’ interaction and stimulation. While cities create the physical environment for social life, public spaces work as the stage and catalyst of social interaction. Therefore, well-functioning public spaces are crucial for any urban environment due to being physical spaces for civic participation, sense of belonging, and social integration. Likewise, a lack of common space results in the decay of the social structure of the city by limiting possibilities for simple communication and interaction. However, urban public space tends to be more and more exclusive due to top-down planning and standardized practices with limited adaptability. This is further compounded by market forces leading to t...Read More

Eco Altitudes [Land8x8 Video]

Cars take up a ton of real estate in America’s cities. From local roads and on-street parking stalls to elevated highways and multi-story parking garages, cities devote 50 to 60 percent of their space to cars. If we could reclaim this valuable land from vehicles, imagine the many ways cities could be transformed. Autonomous vehicles (AVs) have the potential to become a major catalyst for urban transformation, providing cities with the opportunity to reclaim their urban public space. As cities prepare for the advent of AVs and other new mobility technologies, Amna Ansari, Architect and Urban Designer at SWA Group, believes that design professionals have an essential role to play. During the Land8x8 Lightning Talks in Houston, TX, Ansari explores how we might shape these emerging technologie...Read More

Nature in the City: Tracking Pollinators in Denver’s Newest Park

Residents of Globeville, a neighborhood in north Denver, have limited access to natural areas and open space – factors that impact social equity, along with mental and physical well-being. The neighborhood is zoned urban industrial and is littered with a recycling plant, an armory, and scrap yards. It was home to the Globe Asarco Plant, a high-purity metals (cadmium, arsenic, lead, and zinc) refining facility, awarded Superfund status in 1993. An exciting 80-acre park project is slated to change the status quo. Beyond designing a park, Denver Parks and Recreation and Denver Public Works, along with lead design firm Dig Studio, undertook an in-depth, year-long community engagement process designed to build social capital alongside the wealth of new green space. The Beginning The Globeville ...Read More

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