Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 30

THE WORLD WE MAKE

What we see around us is not what
we expected...Can we, today, be
part of a counterforce?
We can't be too cocky about what design can do. We are
still recovering from the hangover of the period of "Spatial
Determinism" - all those decades when we imagined that
almost all societal problems could be solved by spatial means.
A half century ago, the Austrian architect Hermann Czeck
came to a sobering conclusion: "Architecture is not life itself...
Architecture won't solve our political, our social, not even our
environmental problems, just as music won't solve our noise
pollution problems."
But not solving the noise pollution problems didn't stop
musicians from composing music. And not solving the
environmental problems won't stop us from making
landscape architecture. Yet there is still a tension between
our will to engage with environmental problems, and the
pride we designers take in keeping a critical distance, to stay
culturally relevant.
There are ways to disentangle this conundrum, I think, by
defining our role in one of three ways: that of the day-to-day
practitioner, that of the landscape activist and thirdly, that of
the landscape researcher.
THE LANDSCAPE ARCHITECT PRACTITIONER:
TURNING PROBLEMS INTO PARKS?
In our everyday work, we are mediators, balancing natural
processes with social needs. We know for example, that music
will not solve our noise pollution problems, but landscape
architecture can make a valuable contribution, as it did in our
Noise Reduction Park, in the polder near Amsterdam Airport
Schiphol, the fourth busiest airport in the world.
In our first pilot program for the park in 2014, which we did
with TNO Acoustics and artist Paul de Kort, we installed a
series of noise-deflecting ridges built with GPS-guided robot
excavators. When we tested them by blasting them with
sound that could simulate every plane of the current fleet, the
impressive results were reported not in our own professional
30 LANDSCAPES PAYSAGES

2, 3

journals, but in WIRED magazine, "Clever Landscapes Bounces
Plane Noise Back into the Sky."
This is how our profession works. Landscape architecture
lays no claim to solve or resolve major issues. Instead, it
reconfigures...and in this case, produced high quality public
space as a side effect.
In a similar fashion, landscape architects have been very active
in guiding the retreat of what I call the "Industrial Glacier" -
restoring the brownfield lands left after the Great Thaw. The
most talked-about parks in the last half century are almost all
brownfield parks. Of course, we don't bring the jobs back, but
our contribution is a transformative one. Problematic areas
become new public spaces, building blocks for a new kind of
urbanity and indeed the basis for urban renewal.
We must also consider the role of landscape architecture in
major climate adaptation programs, such as the decade-long,
€2.3 billion "Room-for-the-River" program in the Netherlands.
For the Dutch, the spectre of long-term climate change
generally spurs the usual Pavlov reaction, "Raise the dikes."
Instead, an alternate perspective was developed: give more
room to a river that had been gradually corseted over the
last centuries. We explored various ways to improve safety,
identifying 600 possible interventions, and after extensive
consultation with water-boards, polder districts and
municipalities, settled on 34 projects. Together, they made our
river area capable of transporting 16,000 m3 of water to the
North Sea.



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Landscapes - Spring 2018

To Begin With
Our Writers
Upfront
Essay
THE TRIAD OF LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE
CHANGZHI WETLAND PARK
AFTER THE DESIGNERS LEAVE THE ROOM
YOU CAN ONLY DESIGN A RIVER ONCE
CONVERSATION
A “PUF” OF INSPIRATION: TOWARD NET ZERO NEIGHBOURHOODS
THE TOUGH GET GOING ON THE WAY TO TRANSFORMATION
THE HALIFAX EXPLOSION: A STORY ONLY THE LANDSCAPE CAN TELL
INTERVIEW
CRITIQUE
PARTING SHOT | UNE DERNIÈRE SALVE
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - Intro
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - cover1
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - cover2
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 3
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 4
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 5
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 6
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 7
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - To Begin With
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 9
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - Our Writers
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 11
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 12
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 13
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - Upfront
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 15
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 16
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 17
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 18
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 19
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 20
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 21
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 22
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 23
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - Essay
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 25
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 26
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 27
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 28
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - THE TRIAD OF LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 30
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 31
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 32
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 33
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - CHANGZHI WETLAND PARK
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 35
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 36
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 37
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - AFTER THE DESIGNERS LEAVE THE ROOM
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 39
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 40
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 41
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 42
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - YOU CAN ONLY DESIGN A RIVER ONCE
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 44
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 45
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 46
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 47
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - CONVERSATION
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 49
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 50
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 51
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 52
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 53
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 54
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 55
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - A “PUF” OF INSPIRATION: TOWARD NET ZERO NEIGHBOURHOODS
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 57
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - THE TOUGH GET GOING ON THE WAY TO TRANSFORMATION
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 59
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 60
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 61
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - THE HALIFAX EXPLOSION: A STORY ONLY THE LANDSCAPE CAN TELL
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 63
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - INTERVIEW
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 65
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 66
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 67
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 68
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 69
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - CRITIQUE
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 71
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 72
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 73
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 74
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 75
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 76
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 77
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 78
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 79
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 80
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 81
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 82
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 83
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 84
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - 85
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - PARTING SHOT | UNE DERNIÈRE SALVE
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - cover3
Landscapes - Spring 2018 - cover4
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