Landscape urbanism


Landscape urbanism

Landscape Urbanism is a theory of urbanism arguing that landscape, rather than architecture, is more capable of organizing the city and enhancing the urban experience. Landscape Urbanism has emerged as a theory in the last ten years and is far from being a coherent doctrine. Charles Waldheim, James Corner, and Mohsen Mostafavi are among the instructors, practitioners, and theorists who have been most responsible for articulating the terms of landscape urbanism. Interestingly, an early and influential landscape urbanism project, Paris's Parc de la Villette, has been influential for both its actual built environment, designed by architect Bernard Tschumi, as well as the runner-up's (unbuilt) design, by Rem Koolhaas. Still, most of the important projects related to this theory have yet to be built, so design competitions have been an influential stage for the development of the theory.

Themes

James Corner, in an essay entitled "Terra Fluxus," describes the main qualities of Landscape Urbanism:

* Process in time: urbanization is a dynamic process characterized more by terms like fluidity, spontaneous feedback, and non-linearity, than stabilty, predictability, or rationality. Ecology and systems theory are concepts inherent to the city.

*Surface, not form: horizontality and sprawl in places like Los Angeles, Atlanta, Houston, San Jose, and the suburban fringes of most American cites "is" the new urban reality. As many theories of urbanism attempt to ignore this fact, landscape urbanism accepts it and tries to understand it. Traditional notions of program and structure are not useful in this diffuse urban condition--their scope is small and limiting. Landscape urbanism uses 'territories' and 'potential' instead of 'program' to define a place's use; it finds thinking in terms of adaptable 'systems' instead of rigid 'structures' as a better way to organize space.

*Form: the traditional character of the city; formlessness characterizes nature, that which has been untouched by human intent. This city/nature duality is critical to most theories of the city and nature. Landscape urbanists argue that this is duality is naive and argue for a conflation of landscape and building.

*new working methods:

*imagination and speculation:

ee also

* Landscape architecture
* Urban design
* Urban planning

References

*Almy, Dean, "Center 14: On Landscape Urbanism", The Center for American Architecture and Design, The University of Texas at Austin, 2007

*Allen, Stan. "Mat Urbanism: The Thick 2-D." "Case: Le Corbusier's Venice Hospital and the Mat Building Revival". Ed. Hashim Sarkis. Munich ; New York: Prestel, 2001.

*Connolly, Peter, "Embracing Openness: Making Landscape Urbanism Landscape Architectural: Part 2", in "The Mesh Book: Landscape/Infrastructure", Edited by Julian Raxworthy and Jessica Blood, RMIT University Press, Melbourne, 2004, 200-219.

*Corner, James, and Alan Balfour. "Recovering Landscape : Essays in Contemporary Landscape Architecture". New York, NY: Princeton Architectural Press, 1999.

*Czerniak, Julia. "CASE--Downsview Park Toronto". Munich ; New York; Cambridge, Mass.: Prestel; Harvard University, Graduate School of Design, 2001.

* [http://www.amazon.com/dp/B000QBW8DK/ Kerb 15 - Landscape Urbanism] . This issue includes contributions from Charles Waldheim, Mohsen Mostafavi, FOA, Karres en Brands, Kongjian Yu, Kyong Park, Kathryn Gustafson, Stephen Read, Kelly Shannon, Richard Weller, Sue Anne Ware, Cesar Torres and Adrian Napoleone, Melbourne, RMIT Press, 2007.

*Koolhaas, Rem. "Atlanta." "S,M,L,XL". New York: Monacelli Press, 1999.

*Mostafavi, Mohsen, Ciro Najle, and Architectural Association. "Landscape Urbanism : A Manual for the Machinic Landscape". London: Architectural Association, 2003.

*Waldheim, Charles. [http://www.papress.com/bookpage.tpl?isbn=1568984391 The Landscape Urbanism Reader] . 1st ed. New York, N.Y.: Princeton Architectural Press, 2006.

Projects

*"Fresh Kills Landfill Competition", Field Operations/James Corner
*"Downsview Park Competition", all finalist entries [http://www.pdp.ca/The_Finalists.416.0.html]
*"Parc de la Villette Competition", OMA entry/Rem Koolhaas
*"Schouwburgplein, Rotterdam", West 8/Adriaan Geuze


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