All posts by LAM Staff

(Re)making the Grade

At the University of Pittsburgh, a Complete Street caps a series of student-centered outdoor spaces.

By Timothy A. Schuler

North of the student union, a new, permeable plaza provides space for events as well as informal gatherings. Photo by Denmarsh Studios/LBA.

In the mid-1950s, the fast-growing University of Pittsburgh acquired two historic properties: the Hotel Schenley, built in 1898, and the Schenley Apartments, built between 1922 and 1924. The buildings were renovated for use as dormitories—and later, in the case of the hotel, a student union—but the spaces around them were left largely untouched, updated over the years to meet local codes but otherwise given little thought. Continue reading (Re)making the Grade

Sketching the Housing Crisis

A pandemic sketchbook becomes a prompt to design activism.

Text and images by Daniel Winterbottom, FASLA

Daniel Winterbottom, FASLA, sketching outdoors. He calls urban sketching a public act, one of vulnerability and frustration balanced with unique opportunities for dialogue, discovery, and fulfillment. In these conditions, the scene, weather, and stamina are always shifting. Focus, adaptation, fortitude, and luck become some of the best assets.

In The Thinking Hand, the Finnish architect Juhani Pallasmaa describes how sketching is a multilayered process of interpretation, one that requires rapid decisions and adjustments. For example, the darkening of one form affects our understanding of those around it, or when we notice the foreground object is a certain size, we understand that a distant object must be half the size, and so on. Through this continuing dialogue a memory is imprinted.

Continue reading Sketching the Housing Crisis

Line by Line

Local and global, analog and digital, Michael Blier leads Landworks Studio into the wide world.

By Jessica Bridger

East Dareen Beach Neighborhood Park in Jubail, Saudi Arabia. Image courtesy Michael Blier, FASLA.

The East Dareen Beach Neighborhood Park site in Jubail, Saudi Arabia, is a serious place: Bounded by a missile silo to the north, its double shore of coast and island form results from a dredge-ravaged coastline—and it is a major part of the city’s treated sewage effluent (TSE) program. Continue reading Line by Line

The LAM Gift Guide for Landscape Architecture Graduates

Books, tech, and lots of pens to set the newly minted designer up right.

By the LAM Editorial Advisory Committee

Well, it’s finally happened. Your family member/friend/mentee/colleague has graduated from a BLA or MLA program, and they’re ready to start their journey as a landscape architecture professional. Now that they’ve finished school, you want to buy them a gift that shows them you get what they do and why they’re passionate about it.

A University of Kentucky graduate exhorts her fellow students to “Be the change.” Credit: @uky_landscapearchitecture/University of Kentucky (UK) Landscape Architecture.

Continue reading The LAM Gift Guide for Landscape Architecture Graduates

Hawaii Coastline Report Links Resilience with Access

A landscape architect-led study from the University of Hawaii combines climate adaptation and waterfront access.

By Timothy A. Schuler

A vision for 20 miles of Honolulu’s waterfront is based on a network of amphibious green spaces that buffers the city from sea-level rise. Image courtesy of the University of Hawai’i Community Design Center.

United States-controlled islands such as Hawaii, Guam, Puerto Rico, and American Samoa are rarely mentioned in U.S. climate coverage, but the projected impacts of sea-level rise to island communities are severe and far-reaching. Continue reading Hawaii Coastline Report Links Resilience with Access

A Canopy Where it Counts

Cedar Rapids, Iowa, grabs the opportunity for more equity and biodiversity after a Derecho flattens more than half the urban trees.

By Kevan Klosterwill

On August 10, 2020, a massive storm ripped through Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and the surrounding area. The storm, called a derecho for the straightness of its 140-mile-per-hour winds (as compared with a twisting tornado), spent less than an hour over the city, but in the process devastated the city’s tree canopy. Continue reading A Canopy Where it Counts

Your Stuff Is Coming (Someday)

Supplies are short and prices are bonkers. What’s behind the issues in the supply chain, and when will they end?

By Bradford McKee

An Alpine crew installing granite pavers at a new park near Hudson Yards. Photo by Dylan Peck, Alpine Construction & Landscaping Corporation.

Don’t worry, it’s not just you. The supply chain chaos that has dogged the whole economy the past couple of years is hitting every point of the uniquely perishable process of building landscapes. Continue reading Your Stuff Is Coming (Someday)