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As part of an ongoing effort to make content more accessible, LAM will be making select stories available to readers in Spanish.

BY JARED BREY

FROM THE NOVEMBER 2021 ISSUE OF LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE MAGAZINE.

 

How many things can a river do? The people of the Tennessee Valley have not finished asking.

For 10,000 years the Tennessee River has both sustained human civilizations and attended their demise. One of the biggest rivers in the United States, the Tennessee is also among the most biodiverse, with some 230 species of fish and 100 species of freshwater mussels. In the 18th century, Cherokee, Creek, and Chickasaw tribes flourished in East Tennessee. Later the river was used to expel Indigenous people from the land along the Trail of Tears after the Indian Removal Act of 1830. Its bridges were burned during the Civil War, its soils stripped of nutrients, its banks eroded. After the federal government created the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) in the 1930s, the river was asked to do ever more: to stop flooding, first and foremost; to generate electricity for thousands of unlit rural miles; to navigate boats and barges along its U-shaped course; to produce nitrates for war munitions and fertilizer for its depleted soils; to host landscapes of leisure and recreation; to make one of the country’s poorest regions prosper.

Now the Tennessee River is asked to be a park from its source to its mouth. (more…)

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On the Cover: Students perch on an overlook at the Tennessee River.

“When Stars Align,” by Jared Brey. Thanks to years of work by students and faculty from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville’s School of Landscape Architecture, the 652-mile trail known as the Tennessee RiverLine has grown from a sparky idea to a full-fledged proposal. It is poised to be part of the region’s next era of people-centered infrastructure.

Also in the issue:
Russell + Mills Studios designs a riverfront for New Belgium Brewing Company in Asheville, North Carolina. | Landscape architect Martin Smith’s vision for revitalizing the Arkansas Delta has grown from passion project to a force for change. | Fallen Sky lands at Storm King Art Center. | Knoxville’s storied Loghaven re-emerges as an artists’ haven. | Seferian Design Group finds a material balance along Lake Ontario. | Carbon counting for city services in Reno, Nevada. | The High Line Canal is a vision for a 71-mile irrigation canal that runs along Denver’s eastern edge. | Goods features new exhibitors at ASLA’s EXPO in Nashville. | Three designers from SCAPE Studio reflect on Hurricane Ida. | A review of Site Matters: Strategies for Uncertainty Through Planning and Design, edited by Andrea Kahn and Carol J. Burns. | Seeking a way to translate wildfire risk in Lake Tahoe, a landscape artist lets the trees talk. 

 

Online this month from the November issue:

“Better Edges for Eels” by Timothy A. Schuler on November 2. On a living shoreline in Ontario, Canada, Seferian Design Group is designing to counteract erosion and provide a habitat for endangered species.

“Home Brewed” by Brian Barth on November 11. A connection with New Belgium Brewing Company led to a chance for Russell + Mills Studios to design the landscape for a brewery in Asheville, North Carolina.

“When Stars Align” by Jared Brey on November 18. A student project to connect people and public lands along a 652-mile river trail gathers steam. English and Spanish.

“High Profile” by Haniya Rae on November 30. The transformation of an irrigation canal east of Denver shows off the region’s diversity.

The full table of contents for November can be found here.

As always, you can buy this issue of Landscape Architecture Magazine at more than 250 bookstores, including many university stores and independents, as well as at Barnes & Noble. You can also buy single digital issues for only $5.25 at Zinio or order single copies of the print issue from ASLA. Annual subscriptions for LAM are a thrifty $59 for print and $44.25 for digital. Our subscription page has more information on subscription options.

Keep an eye out here on the blog, on the LAM Facebook page, and on our Twitter feed (@landarchmag), as we’ll be posting November articles as the month rolls out.

Credits: Cover, photo by Tennessee River Studio; “The Bridge Builder,” Timothy Hursley; “When Stars Align,” Tennessee River Studio; “Home Brewed,” Mark Herboth Photography, LLC; “High Profile,” Evan Anderman.

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BY MEG CALKINS, FASLA

The stone industry adopts a new sustainability standard.

FROM THE FEBRUARY 2018 ISSUE OF LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE MAGAZINE.

In 14 Patterns of Biophilic Design, Bill Browning, an environmental designer and founder of Terrapin Bright Green, cites “material connection with nature” as a significant principle. In other words, materials from nature, with minimal processing, can be used to construct the built environment—reflecting the local geology and connecting people to a place and natural setting. More than any other material, stone fulfills this “pattern”—often seamlessly settling a built landscape into the larger natural context. Yet in some cases, heavy stone can travel thousands of miles between harvest and use—offering absolutely no connection to the local natural landscape and creating a substantial environmental footprint.

Stone holds great potential to be a highly sustainable construction material for use in paving, stairs, and walls. It can be extremely durable, with relatively low embodied energy (energy used to produce a material), and nontoxic. However, a study from the University of Tennessee estimates that more than half of all dimension stone—defined as any stone that has been cut or shaped for use in construction—is imported, primarily from China, India, and Brazil, owing to far lower labor costs and fewer worker safety regulations, which combine for a lower product cost. Some of this stone might have been harvested in the United States, sent overseas for processing, then returned as “imported stone.” Minimal records of stone harvest, sales, and processing make it challenging to track stone’s path to market. Additionally, environmental impacts from waste and water use in stone quarrying and manufacture are not insignificant. Fortunately, a new standard from the Natural Stone Council (NSC) and the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) offers criteria for reducing the environmental impacts of stone harvest and processing and requires a chain of custody for stone so consumers can know for sure the path their “local” stone has traveled.

The stone quarrying process is often lumped together with metal mining’s heavy blasting and toxic runoff, but Kathy Spanier, the marketing director at Coldspring in Minnesota and a participant in the development of the new stone standard, emphasizes (more…)

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