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Landscape Architecture Frontiers

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ISSN 2096-336X

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, Volume 6 Issue 5 Previous Issue   
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EDITORIAL
PAPERS
DESIGNING ECOLOGIES FOR RESILIENT URBANISMS
Bruno De MEULDER, Kelly SHANNON
Landsc. Archit. Front.. 2018, 6 (5): 12-33.  https://doi.org/10.15302/J-LAF-20180502
Abstract   PDF (24375KB)

This article encapsulates the recent work of OSA, a practice-based urbanism situated in an academic environment (KU Leuven, Belgium). In the contemporary era of increased social, ecological, and spatial injustices, OSA’s work attempts to create resilient urbanisms through designing robust ecologies. Its worldwide sites of research and interventions are primarily addressed through three themes: water urbanisms, forest urbanisms, and creating new social ecologies as resistance. The first part of the article provides an overview of the ambitions of OSA with a number of examples. The second component consists of four excerpts of recent and on-going design research.

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BODY-SCALE PERCEPTION AND EXPERIENCE: A TERRAIN-BASED FOUNDATION STUDIO OF LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE
Ying ZENG
Landsc. Archit. Front.. 2018, 6 (5): 34-43.  https://doi.org/10.15302/J-LAF-20180503
Abstract   PDF (17406KB)

Traditional design education and training in China, including Environmental Art and Landscape Architecture, is essentially grafted from methods of architectural painting. The time has come to reexamine and reflect that is it appropriate to borrow teaching methods directly from Architecture and are there other methods that are developed from the intrinsic qualities of Landscape Architecture and can be used for disciplinary teaching? This article introduces a set of methods of terrainbased field investigation and site documentation, including outlining, mapping, representation, and intervention, which were developed by the author for a design studio in the Department of Landscape Architecture, School of Architecture at the China Academy of Art. The perception of landscape through multiple senses and the exploration on the unseen causes of appearance, as well as the relationships and connections within the terrain, are emphasized in such training.

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INTEGRATED TEACHING AND PRACTICE: GREEN INFRASTRUCTURE PLANNING AND GREEN ROOF PERFORMANCE IN A SEMI-ARID CAMPUS ENVIRONMENT, USA
YANG Bo, Nancy MESNER, McKenna DREW, David DURFEE
Landsc. Archit. Front.. 2018, 6 (5): 44-59.  https://doi.org/10.15302/J-LAF-20180504
Abstract   PDF (7812KB)

This paper presents an integrated education and research program that involves extensive participation from stakeholders on campus and beyond. The resultant water conscious design proposal promotes efficient stormwater management on Utah State University’s campus, situated in the semi-arid Intermountain West. Utah State has adopted various “green” solutions for stormwater management, such as directing most campus runoff to recharge groundwater. Yet, there is no comprehensive plan that lays out its sustainable practices, and little quantitative assessment of the design performance has been performed. In accord with the University Campus Master Plan of 2011 and Campus Sustainability Plan 2013-2020, this paper addresses this gap and proposes a series of green infrastructure strategies that make use of rain as a resource, and that can be implemented across campus in three phases. A built green roof project is part of the Phase I master plan. Pilot performance data are presented regarding stormwater runoff and temperature reduction on a green roof surface versus an adjacent test-bed asphalt roof. In summary, the paper provides a holistic approach toward adopting green infrastructure designs and assessing green infrastructure performance in the less evaluated semi-arid climatic conditions, and it serves as an example of research through design process.

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VIEWS & CRITICISMS
A REFLECTIVE PRACTITIONER’S VIEW OF TEACHING AND PRAGMATISM IN RESEARCH
Frederick STEINER
Landsc. Archit. Front.. 2018, 6 (5): 60-65.  https://doi.org/10.15302/J-LAF-20180505
Abstract   PDF (2723KB)

In this article, Frederick Steiner, the interviewee, introduced the teaching system of PennDesign and its strengths and innovations, and explained the relationship between research, education, and practice based on his rich teaching and practice experience. He also gave suggestions about how to optimize the Landscape Architecture education and curriculum to keep up with the changing world. Steiner indicated that both the Sustainable SITES Initiative which he has made great efforts on and his latest book Making Plans can contribute to the professional training and public education. When it came to significant issues or promising topics that Landscape Architecture professionals need to pay more attention on the future, Steiner called for focus on the role of Landscape Architecture in the city, and climate changes and settlements to vulnerable populations, and highlighted the importance of taking a long view and designing with time.

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BRIDGING THE GAPS BETWEEN LANDSCAPE DESIGN PRACTICE AND SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH: A GRAPHICAL INTERPRETATION
WANG Zhifang
Landsc. Archit. Front.. 2018, 6 (5): 66-71.  https://doi.org/10.15302/J-LAF-20180506
Abstract   PDF (4148KB)

Practitioners in the fields of landscape planning and design seem less taking advantage of, or even paying no attention to, existing findings of scientific research in other disciplines; and, they often conduct so-called “transdisciplinary” study on their own, but most of the outcomes are uncompetitive with those proven research findings in relevant fields. The author believed that it is essentially resulted from several dislocations between landscape practice and modern scientific research, that are, the gaps between holism and deconstruction, elements and functions, as well as graphics and texts. To bridge such gaps, this article puts forward two solutions: one is problem-finding and-addressing, and the other is synthesizing and visualization of research results, particularly through graphical interpretation.

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ORIENTED ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN TEACHING—THE CAUP SPECIAL PROGRAM “HOME ABOVE MARKET” AT TONGJI UNIVERSITY
WANG Fangji
Landsc. Archit. Front.. 2018, 6 (5): 72-79.  https://doi.org/10.15302/J-LAF-20180507
Abstract   PDF (6586KB)

This interview centers in an architectural design program titled “Home Above Market,” which is one of the special programs of the College of Architecture and Urban Planning at Tongji University for junior experimental classes since 2012. As an innovative teaching practice that combines multiple specialties and spans a long-time period, this program reflects and accumulates its knowledge and experience through a documentary book series. Wang Fangji, the interviewee, is the teaching director of the Home Above Market program and the leading author of the book series, who also enjoys a high reputation in China’s architectural design education. He points out that this program aims at encouraging students to observe and care about ordinary urban and social environment that is often neglected in current architectural education. He further argues that problem-finding and-addressing capability training is important to architectural students, which would help stimulate a more vibrant exploration of China’s urban architecture.

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THOUGHTS ON DESIGN EDUCATION IN CHINA: FROM CLASSROOM TO WORKSHOP
Jason HO, Dihua LI, LIU Yuelai, WANG Yuan
Landsc. Archit. Front.. 2018, 6 (5): 80-85.  https://doi.org/10.15302/J-LAF-20180508
Abstract   PDF (1356KB)

Li Dihua from Peking University, Jason Ho, Founder of the Mapping Workshop, Liu Yulai from Tongji University, and Wang Yuan from Huazhong University of Science and Technology were guest instructors at the 2018 Mapping & Making Summer Workshop of National College Student Campus Building Alliance. They each work on bringing new ideas to traditional design education. In this interview they shared their opinions on current design education and teaching in China. They believe that design education in China is currently at a point of crisis where both instructors and students need to be aware of the urgency to change. However, little attention has been given to the improvement of design education, nor has a discourse to explore a future direction been built. The interviewees approached the workshop as an opportunity for students and educators to see new possibilities in design education. Meanwhile, they hope to develop students’ curiosity and confidence in observation, exploration, independent thinking, and evidential design.

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ILLUSTRATED PRINCIPLES OF LANDSCAPE ECOLOGICAL PLANNING AND DESIGN : TEACHING EXPLORATIONS ON BRIDGING THEORIES WITH PRACTICE OF LANDSCAPE ECOLOGICAL PLANNING AND DESIGN
YUE Bangrui, FEI Fan
Landsc. Archit. Front.. 2018, 6 (5): 86-91.  https://doi.org/10.15302/J-LAF-20180509
Abstract   PDF (2923KB)

By reviewing the structure of the book Illustrated Principles of Landscape Ecological Planning and Design, this article reexamines the relationship between theoretical study, teaching, and practice in landscape ecological planning and design. It first explores how to apply the principles of ecological sciences (and other relevant disciplines) into related research, teaching, and practice of landscape ecological planning and design. The authors put forward a multi-level research system that integrates fundamental theories, application bases, and practice, in order to bridge ecological principles with planning and design practice. In addition, based on this landscape ecological planning and design system, the authors developed a T-P-C Approach, a universal operating procedure that links up Theories, Patterns or Principles, and Practice Cases and centers in spatial principles. Through a reader sampling survey, the research system of landscape ecological planning and design is refined and improved based on audience’s comments.

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THEMATIC PRACTICES
AN EVIDENCE-BASED METHODOLOGY FOR LANDSCAPE DESIGN
Pengzhi LI, Boxin LIU, Yiwen GAO
Landsc. Archit. Front.. 2018, 6 (5): 93-101.  https://doi.org/10.15302/J-LAF-20180510
Abstract   PDF (10641KB)

As a design method supported by scientific knowledge and findings, evidence-based design now is widely applied in the field of architectural and landscape design. This design process makes architects and landscape designers’ decisions about built environment sound and reliable. Combining two practice cases — the Urban Ecological Corridor Planning of College Station of Texas, a regional planning project, and Landscape Design of the Yangpu Bridge Park in Shanghai, an urban public space project — this article illustrates the concept and process of key issue identification and response, a pivotal step in evidence-based design, and points out the challenges in related applications of this method.

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ECOLOGICAL DESIGN IN THE PERSPECTIVE OF COMPLEXITY — CONCEPTUAL DESIGN OF NOMADIC LANDSCAPE IN HULUNBUIR
Jingyi LIU, Menghan ZHANG
Landsc. Archit. Front.. 2018, 6 (5): 102-119.  https://doi.org/10.15302/J-LAF-20180511
Abstract   PDF (33201KB)

As ecological design gradually goes beyond environmental protection or resource conservation towards an activity of creating and managing complex systems, researchers and designers have been increasingly looking for design methods from complexity science. Currently, complexity theories have been widely applied in generating complex forms and establishing design process models. Some designers have further integrated complexity theories with design culture through metaphors. In such context, this article attempts to explore application of ecological design methods under a perspective of complexity science. This article describes a conceptual design for Hulunbuir nomadic landscape①, which reveals potential relationships between multiple factors and helps define design strategies with a kind of datascape. The design process draws on complex system design methods featuring a bottom-up process through nested hierarchies and tries to apply an alternative selecting framework and a feedback-learning system for a more tangible implementation and management.

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INCUBATING INNOVATION IN PRACTICE: RESEARCH MODELS FROM ARCHITECTURE, ENGINEERING, AND LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE
Anya DOMLESKY
Landsc. Archit. Front.. 2018, 6 (5): 120-129.  https://doi.org/10.15302/J-LAF-20180512
Abstract   PDF (10208KB)

As our cities and environments become more complex and face unprecedented challenges, it is no longer sufficient to design for aesthetics alone. Urban design, landscape architecture, and planning now demand going beyond typical design services to support deeper insights via foresight, research, experimentation, and innovative advocacy. SWA is one example of addressing these emerging complexities through two-year-old XL Lab, the firm’s platform for structured research and innovation projects. XL Lab differs and shares attributes with dedicated research teams in firms from allied fields such as architecture and engineering, where research entities that inform practice have been operating for longer than in landscape architecture. This article discusses the need for research in design now, what factors formed distinct research and innovation teams across the industry, their models and approaches, and how firms identify and prioritize research themes or issues taking XL Lab and another two research teams as examples.

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EXPERIMENTS & PROCESSES
TOOLS AND ALPINE LANDSCAPES: AN APPROACH TO INQUIRING INTO MOUNT GONGGA ROUTES
Bin LI
Landsc. Archit. Front.. 2018, 6 (5): 131-140.  https://doi.org/10.15302/J-LAF-20180513
Abstract   PDF (21761KB)

Chinese high cold mountains had long been an undiscovered terrain on maps. One of them was Mount Gongga, the highest peak of the Hengduan Mountain Ranges, elevated seven thousand meters above the Chengdu Plain. Mount Gongga has been experiencing visitor blooming, infrastructure updating, and route reshaping, making it a representative case study to examine how landscape routes and pauses can be curated for future changes in ongoing rural-urban transitions. Geographical remoteness keeps this high mountain a white spot to landscape architects and researchers. Topographic prominence stretches and condenses alpine landscape layers and intervenes field observations. "Trans-Alpine: From the Polar to the Peak", a Master of Landscape Architecture design studio at the Oslo School of Architecture and Design locating in Tromsø, experimented with an approach to inquiring into Mount Gongga from Norwegian alpine zones: a combination of research tools including thematic alpine mapping and fieldwork framework. The tool outcomes informed the landscape researchers to further imagine future pausing or route scenarios. Some of the results were curated in an exhibition space at the Nordnorsk Kunstmuseum, as a reflective display of this landscape exploration across two geographies.

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INHERITANCE AND INNOVATION OF LOCAL RESOURCES — SQUARE OF COLLECTIVE MEMORY IN XIANNIANGXI VILLAGE
Jze Yi KUO
Landsc. Archit. Front.. 2018, 6 (5): 141-147.  https://doi.org/10.15302/J-LAF-20180514
Abstract   PDF (19244KB)

Through local culture and customs, we can see the relationship between human beings and nature, the humanity, morality, and value, the authenticity of life, and the wisdom of local folklore. Can Architecture and the contemporary architectural practices learn from local wisdoms to develop culturally sustainable local architectural concepts and methods? What is the significance of these methods for the development of rural communities? Since 2015, Kuo Jze Yi, assistant professor from the School of Architecture and Urban Planning at Shenzhen University, has continued to work in different villages in provinces such as Sichuan, Guangdong, Shandong and Henan, with research assistants, students, and local collaborators, combining teaching, research, and practical methods. In a participatory design approach, they allied with villagers and tried to use local resources to build public spaces that inherit local culture. Taking the Square of Collective Memory in Xianniangxi Village designed during 2017 and 2018 as a case study, this article examines the teaching, research, and practice outcomes of participatory design approach, and suggests methods of inheritance and innovation of local resources.

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