Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 55

SEMONS LA PAGAILLE!

2

3

AN ANTIDOTE TO LONELINESS: LET'S GET MESSY!
Quantifiable research suggests there is indeed an antidote to this
pervasive malaise. As Miss Frizzle of The Magic Schoolbus always
advised, "Let's get messy!"
For our own well-being and that of our communities, we need to
invite messiness into our streets. Intentional messiness through design
engages and stimulates us. We are social beings in our inherent primal
make-up. Our brains are wired to be stimulated by our environment:
we need complexity in our communities. As Colin Ellard details in
his book Places of the Heart, our surroundings have a tangible effect
on our feelings of trust and willingness to help strangers, and upon
our happiness.
THE PLACES THAT CONTAIN OUR EXPERIENCES
In one experiment, Ellard measured people's emotional states and
levels of excitement as they walked along a New York street bordered
by a blank wall, and compared that with their physiological arousal as
they walked down a street alive with restaurants and shops, with lots
of open doors and windows. Unsurprisingly, the busy streetscape had
a highly positive effect. The observations of Jan Gehl reinforce Ellard's.
Gehl has observed that people walk more quickly along blank walls.
Their pace is noticeably slower on open, active streets, where they
pause, look around and absorb their surroundings.
FINDING THE SWEET SPOT
While it is clear that streets, parks and neighbourhoods that are
complex are more compelling and engaging, there is a sweet spot for
complexity. We can be overloaded by too much a good thing. Most
people prefer variety, seeking out both animated environments, and
those that offer moments of quiet. Hence, complex and messy urban
streets will foster both solitary and group interactions, formal and
informal activities, deliberate and spontaneous experiences. Compelling

places juxtapose multiple layers, both physical and experiential.
Ultimately, they offer a poetry of place, from which community rituals
and even myth may arise over time.
The question of how we make such 'messy places' is in itself, a
messy question, and specific to site, community, context and climate.
As we landscape architects approach a design, we consider a great
many questions. Is there a neighbourhood strategy of intensification to
promote a greater plurality of multi-generational household types and
ranges of income? Does the community embrace a diversity of activity?
Do residents view the street as a social place rather than solely a vehicle
corridor? Are regulations for buildings and rights-of-way conducive
to place making? Does the community encourage walking, and offer
inviting tree-lined sidewalks? At the scale of the street and block, are
there frameworks to guide the design of the neighbourhood as a social
space, shaped with front doors and stoops?
Contemporary processes of city planning and design are built upon
deliberate policies which foster the integration of living, working
and playing. Engaging place-making is encouraged through design
frameworks that consider a plethora of key questions: the frequency
of entrances along a block face, the transparency of the building faces,
the dimensions of street grids, the strategic juxtapositioning of unlikely
uses, the integration of transit, the programming of unanticipated
activity, the greening of the public realm...and so much more. Only in
this way can our neighbourhoods become better places, by reflecting
the intricate relationships between people and the places that contain
their lives.

dcarlyle@dialogdesign.ca
For a review of Colin Elard's Places of the Heart:
The Psychogeography of Everyday Life > page 18,
"The Neuroscience of Urban Design"
SUMMER | ÉTÉ 2017 55



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Landscapes - Summer 2017

TO BEGIN WITH | POUR COMMENCER
COLLABORATORS | COLLABORATEURS
PROLOGUE
ESSAY | ESSAI
Après le désordre vient le beau temps
A Fine Mess
Biophilic City
“I Am the Space Where I Am”
OPINION
Homo the Homogenizer? Do LAs Design Messy Terrain?
Waste-Less in Seattle: How Will This Look When It Gets Dirty?
Beaver the Disruptor Tolerating Disorder in the Heart of Vancouver
Messiness by Intention
CRITIQUE
@landtecanada Taking It With You
THE LAST WORD | LE MOT DE LA FIN
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - intro
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - cover1
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - cover2
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 3
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 4
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 5
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 6
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 7
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - TO BEGIN WITH | POUR COMMENCER
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 9
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - COLLABORATORS | COLLABORATEURS
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 11
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 12
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 13
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - PROLOGUE
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 15
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 16
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 17
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 18
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 19
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - ESSAY | ESSAI
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 21
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 22
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - Après le désordre vient le beau temps
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 24
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 25
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - A Fine Mess
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 27
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 28
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 29
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 30
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - Biophilic City
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 32
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 33
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - “I Am the Space Where I Am”
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 35
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 36
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 37
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 38
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 39
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - OPINION
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 41
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 42
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - Homo the Homogenizer? Do LAs Design Messy Terrain?
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 44
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 45
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 46
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - Waste-Less in Seattle: How Will This Look When It Gets Dirty?
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 48
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 49
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 50
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - Beaver the Disruptor Tolerating Disorder in the Heart of Vancouver
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 52
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 53
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - Messiness by Intention
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 55
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - CRITIQUE
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 57
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - @landtecanada Taking It With You
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 59
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 60
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 61
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 62
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 63
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 64
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 65
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 66
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 67
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 68
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 69
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 70
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 71
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 72
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - 73
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - THE LAST WORD | LE MOT DE LA FIN
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - cover3
Landscapes - Summer 2017 - cover4
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