Tag Archives: By Z. Mortice

Thaw-Scape Scrutiny

Federally funded research will help set a baseline for how to build in the Arctic.

By Zach Mortice 

Utqiagvik, Alaska, where the researchers will be examining surface hot spots where melted ice pools. Photo by Andrew Shea/Arctic Design Group, 2017.


In Alaska, beyond the Arctic Circle in North Slope Borough, Indigenous communities practice subsistence whale hunting. To store the whale meat, tribal communities dig ice cellars in the permafrost, a major infrastructural feat, as a 50-ton whale can feed thousands. Continue reading Thaw-Scape Scrutiny

Watershed Moments

A puzzle-like model of the Mississippi River Basin helps to reveal connections.

By Zach Mortice 

An installation for Exhibit Columbus by Derek Hoeferlin, Affiliate ASLA, exaggerates the vertical dimensions of the Mississippi watershed. Image courtesy Derek Hoeferlin, Affiliate ASLA, and Nate Stanfield.


This month, on the riverside terrace of a former pump house in Columbus, Indiana, an exaggerated topographic model of the Mississippi watershed will be installed. It is a hardier object than models meant for conference rooms or museum galleries. Continue reading Watershed Moments

Leave it Better

In the face of likely climate retreat, student design studios explore ways to improve Nantucket’s coastal resilience.

By Zach Mortice

Inhabiting Instabilities posits vast pierscapes that reach out into the ocean. Image courtesy Gena Morgis and Caleb Negash.

On Nantucket Island off the coast of Massachusetts, half of the 10 highest-ever tides arrived in 2018 alone, and flooding is a constant worry that imperils the tourist economy and historic buildings. “But that has not slowed down the real estate market,” says Cecil Barron Jensen, the executive director of the local nonprofit ReMain Nantucket. Continue reading Leave it Better

The Shape of Things to Come

Martin Rickles Studio riffs on Ruth Shellhorn to design a ready-made ADU landscape.

By Zach Mortice

A graphic collage inspired by Ruth Shellhorn. Image courtesy of Martin Rickles Studio..

Carley Rickles came to a realization that’s unfamiliar to most landscape architects when she was beginning the landscape plan for an accessory dwelling unit (ADU). There was, strictly speaking, no site. Continue reading The Shape of Things to Come