An award-winning new outdoor space in Ohio focuses on the autistic experience.
By Maci Nelson, Associate ASLA
In early 2020, Toronto-based Virginia Burt, FASLA, received a cold call and invitation to meet for pizza and discuss a garden project in Cleveland Heights, Ohio. The garden would honor the memory of the family’s child, Morgan, whose favorite hobby was gardening, and who had been diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The proposed garden would replace the existing courtyard at the Monarch Center for Autism and its Lifeworks Program, which cared for Morgan, and provides prevocational training and support for people with autism who experience severe emotional, physical, and social challenges.Continue reading Designed for Differences→
An architecture critic jump-starts real change in Dallas’s memorial landscape.
By Timothy A. Schuler
For the past 20 years, the places where President John F. Kennedy was shot and killed have been marked on Dallas’s Elm Street on the north side of Dealey Plaza by two white Xs—not as part of an official commemoration, but at the hands of what Mark Lamster, the architecture critic for the Dallas Morning News, describes as “assassination tourist guides.” “[They] come and spray-paint these really tawdry Xs on the ground, and every time the city tries to erase them, they just get spray-painted back there,” says Lamster, who began thinking about Dealey Plaza and its shortcomings in 2013, during the 50th anniversary of the assassination.Continue reading Creative Writing→
The Architecture of Disability: Buildings, Cities, and Landscapes Beyond Access
By David Gissen; Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2022; 216 pages, $24.95.
Reviewed by Sara Hendren
Every rights movement carries a tacit “before” and “after” scenario in its theory of change, and global disability rights movements are no different: In the before, a nation’s normative legal policies, its structures of education and governance, its built environments have been inaccessible to people with atypical bodies and minds. In the after—the imagined desirable future—those same structures are newly loosed from these hindering barriers. The world goes from inaccessible to accessible. It is retrofitted, refashioned, its seams opened up for more flexibility, pliability, generosity, making smoother passage through the human-made world a form of civic enfranchisement.Continue reading Book Review: Access Measures→
A floating resort designed by EDSA helps preserve fragile coastal terrain in the Yucatán.
By Scott Sowers
At the Etéreo beach resort on Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula, the typical vacation experience is transformed into a floating holiday amid a carpet of pygmy mangroves. Pathways to the resort’s pools, restaurants, and beaches are rendered as boardwalks constructed of treated hardwood and mounted on timber pilings. The walkways serve as a staging ground for nature walks and photographic safaris. “The boardwalks feel like they’re floating in the mangroves,” says Devon King, a landscape architect and vice president at EDSA, which led the site’s design. “We wanted to create an ethereal journey and make the walk from the hotel to the beach with moments of discovery, seating areas, and educational moments that made people slow down.”Continue reading Over And Above→
Terrain-NYC turns a bedrock cliff in the Bronx into a garden for all seasons.
By Zach Mortice
Faced with the need for a meditative and richly planted landscape for an affordable and supportive housing project in the Bronx on top of exposed bedrock, Brian Green, a landscape architect at Terrain-NYC, looked to the other geologic formations in Manhattan, particularly in Central Park, and in the Bronx. What he noticed most were the ferns that grew in these places. Typically considered too delicate to take root in rock, they were surprisingly persistent. “They’ll find their way, somehow, into these little crevices,” he says.Continue reading Top of the Rock→
Berger Partnership designs a green infrastructure facility that’s part of the neighborhood.
By Katharine Logan
As climate change and urban growth stress the ability of combined storm and sewer systems to handle the volume of water besieging cities, infrastructure that would once have been relegated to industrial outskirts increasingly needs to fit within mixed-use neighborhoods. In south Seattle, the Georgetown Wet Weather Treatment Station is meant to model replicable solutions while becoming “an integrated part of the community: accepted, acknowledged, actually liked,” says Michael Popiwny, the architectural design and mitigation manager for the King County Department of Natural Resources and Parks, who served as the senior project manager during the design phase of the facility.Continue reading Resilience Theater→
The Magazine of the American Society of Landscape Architects