Claude Cormier + Associés and Confluence untangle a puzzle of wayfinding and stormwater management on a tricky site along Chicago’s lakeshore.
By Zach Mortice
A few years ago, if you wanted to visit the site of Cascade Park in Chicago, designed by Claude Cormier + Associés (now CCxA), you’d find yourself near the shores of Lake Michigan at a 50-foot cliff overlooking a vacant pit bordered by a foreboding service road that led to the lakefront trail to the east. “The entire site was one giant hole,” says Matthew Strange, ASLA, a principal at Confluence, the landscape architect of record for the project. (Confluence was preceded by another landscape architecture firm of record, Living Habitats, from the design development phase through construction documents.) Elsewhere in the Lakeshore East high-rise district, there’s a park by OJB and residential skyscrapers by Studio Gang and others, built atop parking and amenity podiums that hoist the developments over the lake. But Cascade Park was the anomaly.Continue reading Claude Cormier: Step Down, Splash Down→
“I had this wood piece discarded from studio and the pins we use for pinups lying around on my desk, and I needed something to help me envision [the maze]…. There are many ways to make a model; this one is pins, paper, and a block of wood—quick and cheap.”
Design for Freedom works to end modern slavery in the materials supply chain.
By Kamila Grigo
The 2022 Serpentine Pavilion, titled Black Chapel and designed by the multihyphenate artist Theaster Gates, was conceived as a space offering contemplation, community, and joy to the public.
Installed next to the Serpentine South Gallery in London’s Kensington Gardens, the austere pavilion felt at once imposing, as it reached just beyond the treetops, and humbly compact and perfectly embedded within its context.
The backyard as a distinct space has not always been with us. It is, according to the cultural landscape historian Paul Groth, a relatively recent invention that was made possible by technological innovations in the 1930s and 1940s.
Crows—although they share a predilection for scavenging human food waste alongside other urban avian “pests” such as pigeons—carry a more mischievous reputation. The National Audubon Society cites their incredible intelligence and documented cases of the birds using tools, holding grudges, and performing funerals. Continue reading For Crows, By Humans→
Getting the best from precast concrete requires a little flexibility.
By John Payne, ASLA, and James Dudley
Precast concrete, which is concrete that is cast into its final form before it is installed, has long been used in architecture and engineering for myriad forms and applications. These include bridge trusses, ornamental cladding, and prestressed beams. The casting process takes place within the regulated confines of a facility, with tightly controlled concrete mixes and material ingredients resulting in greater control and consistency, making it a real attraction to both designers and builders. Continue reading Mind the Gaps (and Curves) with Precast Concrete→
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→
The Magazine of the American Society of Landscape Architects