When to Not Design

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  • #155705
    Shavawn Coleman
    Participant

    Is there ever a time when we shouldn’t design? In my opinion there are certain situations where it is ok to let nature take over. I took that concept along with wanting to naturalize the concrete channels in Las Vegas. It’s in an interesting concept, it would never get passed here, but it gets you thinking… What are your thoughts? Check it out here: http://http://www.colemanconcepts.com/when-to-not-design/ 

    #155716
    mauiBob
    Participant

    “To let nature take over?” There would be no need for design professionals. Sort of like the recent economy. Even the most naturalistic site needs some design input. When I worked in Vegas 9 years ago, we actually tossed around this idea once. The city wanted to do “something” with the channels and our design team tinkered with several ideas. We made it park-like with sculptures and informational kiosks, etc. Another plan was with a simple activity trail surrounded by berms and desert plants. It never made it past the concept phase. Why? Money talks. Everything, except student class projects, is about money and budgets. If someone has the money for it, sure it can happen. In short, city funds dried up and city manager/Public works pulled the plug on it. I’m sure I have digital copies of the plans…somewhere…on an archive CD.

    I feel the City only attempted to tackle this issue, because several homeless people died in it when a storm surge flooded some of the underground channels. It was merely a PR stunt. When interest phased off, so did the project. Yes, sure the City officials really do care about the homeless population who don’t vote or pay taxes.

    #155715
    Craig Anthony
    Participant

    When you have to ask whether or not you should design.

    #155714
    Craig Anthony
    Participant

    Salutations mauiB! How’s life as an LA in paradise treatin’ ya?

    #155713
    Ray Freeman
    Participant

    Don’t try to be a designer on the Design Section of the LARE.

    Think problem solving.

    #155712
    mauiBob
    Participant

    Look who showed up and out from the forest…The kid from NYC! I’m an “LA” doing “Planning” related jobs. Landscape architecture has been phased out; it no longer exist. I hope you have a Plan B and job skills are flexible for a smooth transition to another profession.

    How many times do I have to tell you on how much I hate living and working on this island? Who wants to live stress free anyway? I need smog, traffic jams, crime, rude people, egotistic LA business owners and managers, dirty water, 120 or 10 degree weather, and Republican voting friends. My job doesn’t allow me to save enough money to buy an airplane ticket outta this wasteland!..

    #155711
    Shannon J Mikus
    Participant

    Frist of all, I think Bruce Ferguson doesn’t get quoted enough.  

    I’d like to suggest that the issue in Vegas needs to be considered holistically.  How can the dumb-*##es in the city’s CE dept not concern themselves with the effects their decision is having on Lake Mead’s ecology?  Do they think they live in a bubble?  

    Also, consider the arroyos; they are fascinating landscapes.  It is the desert’s impermeability that creates them, so sequestering or infiltrating water further up the watershed doesn’t make much sense, since those acts are out of place in the desert.  I would suggest that any dumb-#$$ who buys land next to an arroyo doesn’t deserve the insurance money when his house gets washed away.  Serves him right!  Since that is the case; who decided that land adjacent to an arroyo could be legally sold, anyways?  It’s like making it “OK” to build in the Mississippi flood plain and then expect the flooding to go away just because someone built there???  I mean, come ON!  When it comes to City/County activity in Vegas, it’s like Forrest Gump’s Mama used to say, “Stupid is as stupid does.”  I lived in Vegas for 4 years, and the only thing that town has more of than stupid is money, and that is debatable.  I regret that so many ignorant dolts have that kind of power over that fragile landscape.  

    Back to Prof Ferguson to finish.  I wonder if some sort of interlocking/permeable paving has been looked at to help control/focus desert flooding?  It would just be a part of the system, which would include willows, some sedges, an occasional cottonwood.  Who would mind some of that rather than just LA-style open canal?

    MIKO

    #155710
    Alan Ray, RLA
    Participant

    Not to design is a design decision.

    Most designers do not know when to stop .

    #155709
    Shavawn Coleman
    Participant

    I would have to agree Alan. There is such a thing as over designing. Sometimes, nature has her design, and it’s up to us to know when to step aside and let her go.

    Thanks for your input!

    #155708
    Boilerplater
    Participant

    I was in Vegas also, for almost 5 years, and I have to agree, there is a lot of stupid there.  Not a lot of awareness of ecology or of culture in general.  I found that the reason they like to have those concrete-lined channels is to move the water along quickly without a lot of infiltration or evaporation loss to get it into Lake Mead.  The water authority gets credit for how much water goes back into the lake and that affects how much they can draw out of it.  And now that they don’t have money anymore, they cant do much of the stupid.  The cities of the valley have had to do a lot of layoffs and scaling back of capital projects in the last few years.  I enjoyed some things about it, and I miss warm winters, especially when it is 20 degrees where I am now, but when the bubble burst, it exposed how ethically bankrupt the place is, when people found themselves without a decent reason for being there.

    But I have to give some credit to the planners of Summerlin, as they built around exisitng washes and made them into park spaces within the community with trails.  The trails and amenities often suffer damage during periods of heavy flow when a lot of soil is pushed around, but they keep rebuilding.  They look so much better than the concrete-lined channels that a lot of those washes eventually flow into.

    #155707
    Jason T. Radice
    Participant

    “If you chose not to decide, you still have made a choice”

    -Neal Peart

    #155706
    Boilerplater
    Participant

    What about all your stock picks with incredible returns?  Not a time to sell?

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