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Urban Landscape Design

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Urban Landscape Design

The Federal Bureau of Labor Statistics forecasts the profession of Landscape Architecture to grow at up to 20% over the next five years.  In 2010 US News & World Report named it “a top 50 profession” in terms of job prospects and quality of life. Landscape architects are designers and scientists.  They are active in firms ranging from small, signature practices to global corporations; in public agencies such as urban design departments, state and national parks; in law, policy and environmental management programs as well as many other fields.  Landscape architects, for example, are developing planting and re-grading strategies for industrial sites that can remediate soil and prepare the land for future sustainable development.  Landscape architects are collaborating with urban planners to propose new, productive roles –such as urban agriculture – for vacant lots in response to “shrinking cities” initiatives.  Landscape architects are active in the design of open spaces that incorporate the latest thinking in sustainability for all communities, from nature and wild life systems to human populations. A bachelor’s degree in landscape architecture allows students to pursue any environmental-related field. For information on the profession of landscape architecture, see the American Society of Landscape Architects at www.asla.org.
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Urban Landscape Design

BLA Urban Landscape Northeastern University offers a BLA in Urban Landscape. This new major reflects a growing public interest in making our cities more sustainable, and in bringing the insights of landscape architects to join those of urban designers and architects. This hybrid field has deep roots in design, ecology, planning and aesthetics, and in the past 15 years has come to play an ever more important role in the design of new places, as well as the retrofitting of our older, post-industrial landscapes. An inherently interdisciplinary program, Urban Landscape will involve collaborations with other academic units on campus. For more information contact: Program Coor­di­na­tor Pablo Pérez-Ramos Visiting Assistant Professor p.perezramos@neu.edu
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Urban Landscape Design

Landscape architects are designers and scientists.  They are active in firms ranging from small, signature practices to global corporations; in public agencies such as urban design departments, state and national parks; in law, policy and environmental management programs as well as many other fields.  Landscape architects, for example, are developing planting and re-grading strategies for industrial sites that can remediate soil and prepare the land for future sustainable development.  Landscape architects are collaborating with urban planners to propose new, productive roles –such as urban agriculture – for vacant lots in response to “shrinking cities” initiatives.  Landscape architects are active in the design of open spaces that incorporate the latest thinking in sustainability for all communities, from nature and wild life systems to human populations.
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Urban Landscape Design

Landscape architecture is a multi-disciplinary field, incorporating aspects of botany, horticulture, the fine arts, architecture, industrial design, soil sciences, environmental psychology, geography, and ecology. The activities of a landscape architect can range from the creation of public parks and parkways to site planning for campuses and corporate office parks, from the design of residential estates to the design of civil infrastructure and the management of large wilderness areas or reclamation of degraded landscapes such as mines or landfills. Landscape architects work on structures and external spaces with limitations toward the landscape or park aspect of the design – large or small, urban, suburban and rural, and with “hard” (built) and “soft” (planted) materials, while integrating ecological sustainability. The most valuable contribution can be made at the first stage of a project to generate ideas with technical understanding and creative flair for the design, organization, and use of spaces. The landscape architect can conceive the overall concept and prepare the master plan, from which detailed design drawings and technical specifications are prepared. They can also review proposals to authorize and supervise contracts for the construction work. Other skills include preparing design impact assessments, conducting environmental assessments and audits, and serving as an expert witness at inquiries on land use issues.
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Urban Landscape Design

Northeastern University offers a BLA in Urban Landscape. This new major reflects a growing public interest in making our cities more sustainable, and in bringing the insights of landscape architects to join those of urban designers and architects. This hybrid field has deep roots in design, ecology, planning and aesthetics, and in the past 15 years has come to play an ever more important role in the design of new places, as well as the retrofitting of our older, post-industrial landscapes. An inherently interdisciplinary program, Urban Landscape will involve collaborations with other academic units on campus.

Landscape architecture is the design of outdoor public areas, landmarks, and structures to achieve environmental, social-behavioral, or aesthetic outcomes. It involves the systematic investigation of existing social, ecological, and soil conditions and processes in the landscape, and the design of interventions that will produce the desired outcome. The scope of the profession includes landscape design; site planning; stormwater management; environmental restoration; parks and recreation planning; visual resource management; green infrastructure planning and provision; and private estate and residence landscape master planning and design; all at varying scales of design, planning and management. A practitioner in the profession of landscape architecture is called a landscape architect.
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For the period before 1800, the history of landscape gardening (later called landscape architecture) is largely that of master planning and garden design for manor houses, palaces and royal properties, religious complexes, and centers of government. An example is the extensive work by André Le Nôtre at Vaux-le-Vicomte for King Louis XIV of France at the Palace of Versailles. The first person to write of making a landscape was Joseph Addison in 1712. The term landscape architecture was invented by Gilbert Laing Meason in 1828, and John Claudius Loudon (1783–1843) was instrumental in the adoption of the term landscape architecture by the modern profession. He took up the term from Meason and gave it publicity in his Encyclopedias and in his 1840 book on the Landscape Gardening and Landscape Architecture of the Late Humphry Repton.
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Urban landscape design is the act of taking a piece of land, no matter how big, and analyzing, evaluating and beautifying it. All the while, designers must focus on maintaining or increasing functionality and usability for humans and our animal counterparts in a cost effective manner. This is not a simple task. Urban landscape design mixes the talents of architects, surveyors, landscape designers, horticulturalists and conservationists. They all work together to create a space that solves a problem, enh­ances the surroundings and improves or maintains natural surroundings, including waterways.
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Since this period Urban Planning has developed into a separate independent profession that has incorporated important contributions from other fields such as Civil Engineering, Architecture and Public Administration. Urban Planners are qualified to perform tasks independent of landscape architects, and in general, the curriculum of landscape architecture programs do not prepare students to become urban planners.
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Landscape planners are concerned with landscape planning for the location, scenic, ecological and recreational aspects of urban, rural and coastal land use. Their work is embodied in written statements of policy and strategy, and their remit includes master planning for new developments, landscape evaluations and assessments, and preparing countryside management or policy plans. Some may also apply an additional specialism such as landscape archaeology or law to the process of landscape planning.
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If you live in a city, then you understand the challenges of urban landscape design. Living in an area with high population density doesn’t mean you can’t grow and maintain lush plant life in your personal space. At the most basic level, plants need sunshine and water. Your landscape plan for an urban space should be designed around the availability of these elements.
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The profession has gained in status and numbers due to the construction boom of the past decade and raising of standards of Irish design. There is still no registration of title in Ireland and the profession is unregulated, but there is increasing awareness of the profession and of status of the ILI. Landscape architects in Ireland work in private practice, public sector bodies at local government level and in some bodies such transport and national heritage and in the academic sector. The demand for landscape architects is often associated with strategic infrastructure projects due to Ireland’s recent major infrastructural investments. Landscape architects are employed in design of: green infrastructure, public realm, institutional/medical/industrial campuses and settings, parks, play facilities, transport (road/rail/cycle/port) corridors, retail complexes, residential estates (including plans for remediation of now-abandoned housing ‘ghost’ estates), village improvements, accessibility audits, graveyard restoration schemes, wind farms, wetland drainage systems and coastal zones. They are also significantly employed in preparation/review of statutory impact assessment reports on landscape, visual and ecological impacts of design proposals.
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Landscape architecture is a combination of art and science focusing on two of today’s most important issues: the health of our environment and the well being of people. Landscape architects use skill and knowledge in design and environmental technology to create places of meaning, ecological performance and beauty. Landscape architects are social activists in the sense that they shape the very spaces and systems that define our everyday lives. From beloved parks and gardens to creating green infrastructures for energy, food, and water resources, landscape architecture is an exciting and diverse profession.

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