SINGLE FAMILY HOUSING THAT MAKES SENSE...

Jan 22, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] David Friedlander  LIFE EDITED Architecture There was a time when American single family homes weren’t so absurdly large. In 1950, the average household had 3.83 people and the average new single family home was 983 sq ft, making for a pretty reasonable 291 sq ft per person. Compare that to 2014, when the average household had 2.54 people and the average new single family home was 2,690 sq ft, or 1059 sq ft per person. That’s a 360% increase in per capita housing size. Yikes! What’s worse is this continual embiggening of the American home has dwindled the options of modestly sized homes for those who want them. We frequently get notes from people who want to downsize, but say they are forced into homes larger than they want because there’s virtually nothing...

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COOL TRANSFORMING SAN FRANCISCO LOFT...

Jan 21, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] David Friedlander  LIFE EDITED Architecture A reader of ours turned us onto this cool 500 sq ft San Francisco loft recently featured on Design Milk. The space was designed by Charles Irby and Peter Suen and centers around a prefabricated module that houses nearly all of the apartment’s storage and furniture. Inside the module is an area that contains storage, a work station, a bench and a dining table that flips down from the wall. There is also a very cool murphy bed that, when folded into the wall, has a dry-erase board on its base. On top of the module is a loft bed effectively making the place capable of sleeping four friendly people. The loft is accessed via a ladder which sits on the far end of the module where there is ample, open...

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A TINY HOUSE THAT DOESN’T LOOK LIKE IT BELONGS IN 1890’S KANSAS...

Jan 21, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] David Friedlander  LIFE EDITED Architecture Call us a bit jaded, but after a while many tiny houses start to look alike: tiny A-frame structures with eaves and a porch, lots of rustic wood, a loft bed, composting toilet. This is all fine, good and functional, but it can also feel somewhat generic and leave those whose tastes lean modern a little wanting. We ran across this tiny house on Treehugger by a Dutch outfit that calls themselves Woonpioniers. Yes, their “Porta Palace”, as they call it, is still made of wood and has an A-frame (albeit an asymmetrical one), loft bed and composting toilet, but its sleek and clean design give it an overall effect that is very removed from Laura Ingalls and her houses on prairies. The first distinguishing trait are windows: two...

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NEW VISIONS FOR LOS ANGELES’ PERSHING SQUARE PARK...

Jan 21, 2016 Posted by

[Translate]  by Jared Green   THE DIRT Four design teams have been announced as finalists in the competition to remake Pershing Square Park in downtown Los Angeles. Pershing Square Renew, the public-private partnership behind the revamp, has whittled the finalists down from 54 entries and 10 semi-finalist teams. According to Dezeen, Eduardo Santana, executive director of Pershing Square Renew, said: “the world-class firms selected by our jury represent a huge range. They include global stars and local unknowns.” The 5-acre park has seen many iterations over its nearly 150 year history; the latest was created in 1994 by Mexican architect and landscape architect Ricardo Legorreta and American landscape architect Laurie Olin, FASLA. Development on a new park is expected to begin later this year. Here’s a brief overview of the four finalists, who largely present...

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ASLA ANNOUNCES 2016 PROFESSIONAL AND STUDENT AWARDS CALL FOR ENTRIES...

Jan 21, 2016 Posted by

[Translate]  by The Dirt Contributor The American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) announces its calls for entries for the 2016 Professional and Student Awards, the world’s most prestigious juried landscape architecture competition. Each year, the ASLA Professional Awards honor the best in landscape architecture from around the globe, while the ASLA Student Awards give us a glimpse into the future of the profession. Award-winning submissions will be featured in the October issue of Landscape Architecture Magazine and in many other design and construction industry and general-interest media. Award recipients, their clients and student advisors also will be honored at the awards presentation ceremony during the ASLA Annual Meeting and EXPO in New Orleans, October 21-24, 2016. Award-winning submissions will also be featured in a video presentation at the ceremony and on the awards website...

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A CASE FOR BRINGING INNOVATION TO THE HOUSING MARKET...

Jan 19, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] David Friedlander   LIFE EDITED Architecture In Manhattan, the average cost of a studio apartment is $2,418 (non doorman). In San Francisco, it’s $2650. Crazy as it sounds, you might not have the privilege of paying those sums as both cities have low single digit vacancy rates. Other major cities like Boston and DC have similarly high rents and low inventory. And while some of this expense is offset by higher per capita incomes, many find themselves unable to afford housing. A study by NYU’s Furman Center found that 50% of New Yorkers were “cost-burdened” by their rent, paying more than 30% of their income on housing; 60% of that segment (600K people) were “extremely cost burdened,” forking over more than 50%. So it’s not a stretch to say that housing is a big problem in many major cities (we’ll...

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LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE IN THE NEWS HIGHLIGHTS (JANUARY 1 – 15)...

Jan 19, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] THE DIRT by J.R. Taylor Can a Professionally Designed Garden Add Value to Your Home? – The Huffington Post, 1/4/15 “This year marks the 300th anniversary of the birth of Capability Brown – the landscape architect renowned for designing over 170 country house estates and gardens during the 18th century. His elegant style of undulating parkland and serpentine lakes can still be seen at dozens of locations, including Blenheim Palace and Stowe.” See a Rooftop Garden in Brooklyn Inspired by the High Line – Architectural Digest, 1/6/15 “Few cities in the world have real estate as expensive as New York’s. For its millions of residents, the idea of certain amenities, such as a private garden—must be quickly abandoned. Yet one apartment building in Brooklyn’s trendy Dumbo neighborhood is creatively changing all of that.”...

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STAGGERED STARTER HOME PROJECT IN NEW ORLEANS...

Jan 17, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] 0 OJT develops staggered starter home* project in new orleans all images © william crocker       developed as an opportunistic and affordable urban housing program by new orleans-based studio OJT (office of jonathan tate). ‘starter home*’ explores the relevant and increasing problem of entry-level homes, while pairing contemporary design and addressing environmental concerns.     the project, led by architect jonathan tate has been designed to cater to a range of buyers; from people buying for the first time; downsizing; densification through infill of overlooked odd or irregular vacant land. the first starter home* has been launched in new orleans, located in the irish channel neighborhood of the american city. the concept forms an opportunistic urban housing program created to develop affordable, entry-level homes       the designers sought out...

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MODULAR HOUSING UNITS POSITIONED ON PARIS ROOFTOPS...

Jan 17, 2016 Posted by

[Translate]   stéphane malka positions modular housing units on rooftops in paris all images courtesy of stéphane malka       discovering ways of gaining new perspectives of the city, stéphane malka architecture have designed a housing intervention in paris which effectively works with existing buildings. named ‘3box’, the units are suspended and raised in between two buildings on a corner plot. the modular structures are rectangular in shape and subtly highlights the contrast between old and new, while developed with sustainable technologies and topped with a green roof.   ‘we were able to propose green housing 40% below the real estate market price, built without any nuisance in workshops, in an extremely short time thanks to our patented panels and unique technique of prefabrication. these patents were achieved in collaboration with a team...

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IT’S THE LITTLE THINGS THAT MAKE A DIFFERENCE...

Jan 7, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] David Friedlander   LIFE EDITED Architecture A reader tipped us off to the east bay town of Albany, California, which, like its neighbor to the south, Berkeley, has become increasingly hospitable to accessory dwelling units (ADU’s), both as a way to increase density as well as creating an “aging in place” strategy; ADUs can let older, emptied nest adults inhabit small dwellings behind the big homes that they might have once used for their full houses. We found this nice example in Albany on Tiny House Listing of how one family, through the addition of an ADU, turned a fairly typical single family house into a mini compound that housed three generations. While ADUs are often used to house older generations, this particular one, at least initially, was used to house younger ones. The house owner...

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THE LANDSCAPE OF PLEASURE

Jan 6, 2016 Posted by

[Translate]  by The Dirt Contributor A recent New York Times money column encourages financial planning for play. Architect Bjarke Ingels pitches projects of “hedonistic sustainability.” The second issue of LA+, a new journal from University of Pennsylvania’s landscape architecture department, sets aside questions of saving money or the earth to focus exclusively on pleasure for its own sake. What if landscape architects ignored the perils of inundation, extinction, and urban anomie in favor of the pleasures of the flesh? The authors of the short piece, “Why so serious, landscape architecture?,” argue that such pieties help neither the earth nor the profession. The journal’s collection of articles guide us through an alternative landscape of leisure and sensory delight. To understand why this approach feels so transgressive, we can look back to Ancient Greece and Rome,...

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HIDE OUT IN THE HILLS IN THIS HIGH DESIGN GETAWAY...

Dec 28, 2015 Posted by

[Translate] David Friedlander  LIFE EDITED Architecture If DIY, salvaged material made, moss-covered Hobbit holes aren’t your thing, the VIPP Shelter might just be. VIPP is a Danish product design company best known for a pedal operated trash can (trust me, you’ve seen it). In their shelter they wanted to create a “plug-and-play getaway”–everything from the structure itself down to the linens has been designed by VIPP and is included in the purchase price. VIPP wants the owner to set up the, ahem, cabin and get relaxing ASAP without burden of choosing which door handle goes best with the moulding. The first thing you’ll probably notice about the prefab, 55 sq m (592 sq ft) shelter is glass. It’s everywhere. On the two main walls. On the ceiling. The idea being to give the owner maximum exposure...

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GREENBUILD GOES MAINSTREAM

Dec 27, 2015 Posted by

[Translate] It may be more challenging than anyone has supposed for Greenbuild to penetrate popular consciousness. Susan S. Szenasy  METROPOLIS MAGAZINE MSNBC’s Mika Brzezinski interviews director James Cameron at this year’s Greenbuild conference. Courtesy Greenbuild International Conference & Expo In November, I boarded Amtrak to head to Washington, D.C. Our capital city, boasting more monuments than any other in the country, apparently inspires Greenbuild, the annual conference of the United States Greenbuilding Council (USGBC), to make some monumental announcements. Much has been accomplished in the organization’s 23 years of environmental advocacy. But it may be best known for its LEED-rating programs, which consider construction and planning at all scales, asking architects, builders, and developers to pay attention to, among other things, water, energy, and health—all that our home planet, and the living creatures that inhabit...

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SELF-SUSTAINING, RESILIENT COASTAL COMMUNITY NEAR BOSTON...

Dec 27, 2015 Posted by

[Translate] Paul Lukez Architecture and team are designing a self-sustaining, resilient coastal community near Boston   by Cat DiStasio   INHABITAT The reality is clear: the global sea level is rising. Coastal cities are under threat of flooding during storms, and many areas are ill-equipped to sustain such an attack of nature. Increasingly, this is where technology and design converge, resulting in new approaches to city infrastructure and housing that is resilient enough to withstand or even benefit from the changing conditions. Paul Lukez Architects (PLA) brought together a multidisciplinary team to address this complex challenge in a Boston neighborhood which is surrounded by water on three sides, making it particularly vulnerable to the rising tides. Harnessing Energy from Rising Tides. In essence, the PLA-led team looked at the harsh reality of rising sea levels...

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WORLD’S LONGEST ICE BRIDGE IS COMING TO FINLAND...

Dec 27, 2015 Posted by

[Translate] by Lidija Grozdanic   INHABITAT Next Monday the first batch of around 150 students will leave for Finland to build the world’s longest bridge made of ice. The 65-meter-long paper fiber-reinforced bridge, inspired by a Leonardo da Vinci design, is expected to be completed by mid February. It will become part of a site in the Finnish town of Juuka, where a team from Eindhoven built the world’s largest ice dome in 2014.   An international team, led by the staff of the Built Environment department of Eindhoven University of Technology, will build the bridge using around 900 tons of ice over the course of approximately six weeks. The structure will be made with water. Two percent of the mixture will be comprised of paper fiber, which will make the frozen water three times...

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DISASTER-PROOF SCHOOL DESIGN

Dec 27, 2015 Posted by

[Translate] by Lucy Wang   INHABITAT New York-based SHoP Architects has unveiled plans to build 50 solar-powered, disaster-proof schools in the Nepalese regions hit hardest by the April 25 earthquake. The design firm teamed up with nonprofits Kids of Kathmandu and Asian Friendship Network for the project, which will not only replace lost schools but also offer improved infrastructure that can work off-grid and even, in some cases, provide electricity and clean water to neighboring villages. SHoP Architects designed the schools to be as flexible and adaptable as possible to varying terrains and needs. The structures are made from an easily assembled kit of parts comprising readily available local materials such as earth brick, which provides stabilizing thermal mass. The earthquake-resistant schools will be set atop concrete slab foundations and erected with steel truss roof...

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Dec 23, 2015 Posted by

[Translate] David Friedlander Architecture The world is abuzz about tiny houses. They are the architectural antidote to all that ails the modern American home: they are small, affordable energy misers whose tiny confines prohibit the accumulation of extra stuff. But tiny houses have a fatal flaw: they are illegal for permanent habitation in most cities. The few cities where tiny houses number more than a half dozen (Portland, Olympia and, um…did we say Portland?) are cities that have relaxed their zoning, usually designating them as Accessory Dwelling Units (ADU, aka “Granny Flat”), which are basically houses set up behind other, larger houses. But the Colorado city of Walsenburg (don’t worry, this author–a longtime Coloradan–has never heard of it either) is creating a plan that might someday soon serve as a precedent on how tiny...

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HAFENCITY’S FLOOD-PROOF DESIGN IN GERMANY CAN CHEAT RISING SEA LEVELS...

Dec 17, 2015 Posted by

[Translate] by Katie Medlock   INHABITAT Hamburg, Germany is one of the world’s many cities threatened by rising sea levels, yet its development of the eco-friendly HafenCity district may be part of the solution. The island sits a mere 4.5 or 5 meters above sea level, yet instead of abandoning the area and moving inward, the city has developed HafenCity into a model of sustainability for its 2,000 residents. Even more impressive is its simple solution to annual flooding and the effects of climate change. The area used to be an industrial harbor, yet now houses thousands of citizens in swanky, solar-powered apartments and entertains visitors with commercial spaces in “the new downtown” Hamburg. HafenCity has strict policies about new developments, requiring them to adhere to the Gold Standard, or the equivalent of LEED Platinum...

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Googleplex designer’s sky offices above London would suck people up from their homes...

Dec 17, 2015 Posted by

[Translate] by Lidija Grozdanic   INHABITAT Clive Wilkinson, who design the original Googleplex, came up with a quirky design that puts a satirical spin on the idea of office spaces. His design envisions a layer of single-level workspaces that hover above cities and suck people up from their homes via pneumatic tubes. Entitled ‘The Endless Workspace,’ the project is a tongue-in-cheek proposal meant to “solve” London’s commuting problems. The architect designed The Endless Workspace for the latest issue of Flaunt Magazine. The magazine asked Wilkinson to create a design which would combine the cultures of California and UK, particularly the differences between how people commute in Silicon Valley and London. The resulting concept covers London streets with a layer of open-plan co-working spaces. Related: Google’s new California headquarters is a greenhouse utopia by BIG and...

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OBAMA JUST RELEASED THE BIGGEST ENERGY EFFICIENCY RULE IN U.S. HISTORY...

Dec 17, 2015 Posted by

[Translate]   by Cat DiStasio   INHABITAT The new rules (PDF), according to the Energy Department’s announcement, “will save more energy than any other standard issued by the Department to date.” Over the course of the lifetime of the new rules, the Department estimates an energy savings of 15 quadrillion BTUs or “quads” for short. In 2012, the U.S. consumed about 75 quads of energy, so this savings represents a hefty percentage, which makes this the biggest energy saving ruling in U.S. history, and will leave one heck of a mark in President Obama’s legacy. A new set of energy efficiency rules—the biggest ever released by the United States government—was rolled out today. The energy-saving measures target commercial air conditioners and furnaces, which are responsible for consuming vast amounts of the nation’s energy. By tightening up...

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VIDEO: MEET THE ARCHITECT WHO BUILDS SOLAR HOMES FROM RECYCLED MATERIALS...

Dec 16, 2015 Posted by

[Translate] By Kate Yoder   GRIST In Taos, N.M., recycled tires are the building blocks for a community of radical, off-the-grid homes called “Earthships.”Meet their architect, Michael Reynolds. He’s the rugged, eccentric star of a seven-minute short film from The Atlantic, directed by Flora Lichtman and Katherine Wells for The Adaptors podcast, which gives us a snapshot of life in these captivating solar homes built from natural and recycled materials.Even though his architectural vision appears to be centered around the idea of sustainability, Reynolds isn’t your typical environmentalist. In the film, he says, “I’m so sick of recycling and sustainable and green and organic. They’re rhetoric things.” However, he doesn’t shy away from climate change — quite the contrary, in fact. “I’m not going to argue with the people dancing on the top level of the Titanic before...

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LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE IN THE NEWS HIGHLIGHTS (DECEMBE 1-15)...

Dec 16, 2015 Posted by

[Translate] THE DIRT by J.R. Taylor Lowlife – The Architect’s Newspaper, 12/2/15 “Even the worst gardener knows that a plant needs light to grow. And yet, in defiance of basic biology, a lush garden grows inside a windowless warehouse on the Lower East Side.” Making and Taking: 2015’s Notable Developments in Landscape Architecture  – The Huffington Post, 12/3/15 “For broken, derelict, and underutilized urban space, 2015 was a good year. In North American cities, including Chicago, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Toronto and elsewhere, landscape architects contributed to the ‘urban renaissance’ through excellent design, thoughtful urban planning, and prescient environmental management.” Buffalo Build – The Architect’s Newspaper, 12/7/15 “Amid Houston’s rapidly crowding skyline and population, landscape architecture firm SWA Group is carving out green space in Buffalo Bayou Park, a $58 million remediation overhaul of a...

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WHY DO SOME PEOPLE CHOOSE OPPRESSIVE ENVIRONMENTS?...

Dec 15, 2015 Posted by

[Translate] Nikos A. Salingaros  METROPOLIS MAGAZINE A tall concave ceiling enhances activities taking place in this grand room, but few people consciously attribute the positive ambience to the geometry. Drawing by Nikos A. Salingaros ​The act of building, a man-made transformation of the natural environment is an imposition on nature, necessary for human habitation. The process of assembling architectural and urban form, along with its underlying geometry, can differ radically: either it is inspired by and sympathetic to natural processes, or it is deliberately opposed to them. The difference between natural and artificial is fundamental. Architecture and planning that use unnatural geometric methodologies will inevitably conflict with nature. Often, forms that rely upon visual innovation as their sole inspiration reap acclaim for their architects. Unfortunately, structures that conflict with the processes of nature are ultimately unsustainable. Traditional...

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FUTURISTIC TRANSPORT

Dec 14, 2015 Posted by

[Translate] Gregory Han  METROPOLIS MAGAZINE Bringing eight modes of transportation together was not the only complex problem at the Anaheim Regional Transportation Intermodal Center (ARTIC). The engineering firm BuroHappold worked with HOK, Parsons Brinckerhoff, and Clark Construction not only to build the largest span of ETFE roof cladding in North America, but to also reduce energy and water use by 30 percent, and achieve an anticipated LEED Platinum rating. Courtesy Rick Horn The future of transportation in Southern California resides 28 miles south of downtown Los Angeles, in the form of a voluminous LED-illuminated carapace that could easily be mistaken for an outpost of the Magic Kingdom situated only a few blocks away. But while Disneyland’s promise of “where dreams come true” is popularly appreciated, the newly opened $185.2 million Anaheim Regional Transportation Intermodal...

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MOSHE SAFDIE AND THE WORLD: N.Y. RETROSPECTIVE FINDS THE ARCHITECT ADOPTING A GLOBAL PERSPECTIVE...

Dec 12, 2015 Posted by

[Translate] Point of View  metropolis magazine Robert Landon Moshe Safdie’s Habitat 67, seen under construction with a crane positioning a prefabricated-concrete apartment unit into place Courtesy Safdie Architects At the unveiling of Habitat 67, Moshe Safdie was 29 years old, a mere lad in a profession dominated by men twice his age. The development, consisting of 357 prefabricated concrete boxes, sought to bring the pleasures of suburban living into a dense urban environment. In the process, Safdie, who was awarded the AIA Gold Medal prize this year, broke ground in at least three arenas: urban planning, domestic architecture, and prefabricated construction. Not bad, considering the project had grown directly out of his McGill master’s thesis. In recent years, the architectural world has begun embracing with renewed interest the ideas Safdie first articulated in the 1960s, as a...

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MICRO GOES EVEN MORE MAINSTREAM...

Dec 12, 2015 Posted by

[Translate] David Friedlander  LIFE EDITED Architecture When LifeEdited began several years ago, the micro housing conversation was happening but primarily in small pockets–the odd tiny house in northern California, Gary Chang’s transforming Hong Kong apartment and so. But in the last few years, spurred by things like the adAPT NYC competition and, we like to think, our own efforts, the micro-housing movement has grown considerably and become far more mainstream. Its growth is further evidenced by this short feature by Katie Couric on her Yahoo News program. The feature includes LifeEdited CEO Graham Hill in the LifeEdited apartment as well as other projects we’ve covered recently such as Jeff Wilson in his Kasita prototype apartment in Austin TX and NYC’s Carmel Place micro-apartment building. Ultimately, we hope mainstream media features like this have a normalizing effect...

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NEW YORK’S FIRST MICRO-APARTMENT BUILDING OFFERS ALL-INCLUSIVE LIVING EXPERIENCE...

Dec 12, 2015 Posted by

[Translate]   nov 28, 2015comprises 55 units, varying in size from 260 to 360 square feet — 40% of which are set aside for affordable housing. coinciding with the launch, the building has partnered with stage 3 properties to introduce ‘ollie’, a housing model that seeks to deliver a holistic living experience.   in 2013, the modular scheme — designed by nARCHITECTS — won a competition aimed at introducing additional choices within new york’s housing market. on-site construction began in march 2015, with work scheduled to take less than a year to complete.     on-site construction began in march 2015 video by antti t seppänen      the ‘ollie’ program, which takes its name from its ‘all inclusive’ design, offers residents a range of integrated services. alongside the furnished modular living units, inhabitants...

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NEW CASE STUDIES ON SUSTAINABLE LANDSCAPE DESIGN...

Dec 11, 2015 Posted by

[Translate] THE DIRT by Jared Green A newly expanded and now mobile-friendly version of ASLA’s Designing Our Future: Sustainable Landscapes online exhibition highlights real-world examples of sustainable landscape design and its positive effects on the environment and quality of life. These spaces use natural systems to clean the air and water, restore habitats, create healthy communities, and ultimately provide significant economic, social, and environmental value. Ten new case studies that range from a coastal ecological restoration project to a volunteer-run urban farm illustrate just what sustainable landscapes are and how they provide important benefits on a variety of scales. In the process, the case studies, written in clear, understandable language, also introduce users to what exactly landscape architects do. The new case studies were carefully selected to show a diversity of landscape types and...

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LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTS ANNOUNCE CALL FOR PRESENTATIONS FOR 2016 MEETING IN NEW ORLEANS...

Dec 8, 2015 Posted by

[Translate]  by The Dirt Contributor The American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) has released its call for presentations for the 2016 Annual Meeting and EXPO, which will take place October 21-24, 2016, in New Orleans. More than 6,000 landscape architects and allied professionals are expected to attend. The meeting will feature a diverse spectrum of industry experts speaking on a wide range of subjects, from sustainable design and best practices to new materials and technologies. More than 130 education sessions and field sessions will be presented during the meeting, providing attendees with the opportunity to earn up to 21 professional development hours under the Landscape Architecture Continuing Education System™ (LA CES™). Many of the sessions will also qualify for continuing education credit with the Green Building Certification Institute (toward LEED AP credential maintenance), the...

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LOW IMPACT, HIGH TIMES, IN THE WOODS...

Dec 4, 2015 Posted by

[Translate] David Friedlander   LIFE EDITED Architecture Individual tiny cabins out in the woods are nifty and all, but the architectural form’s real potential lies in community formation. Magic happens when you throw a bunch of tiny structures and people in a cluster to share resources, meals, skills and lives. This kind of magic has been happening at a 55-acre woodland preserve in upstate New York named Beaver Brook for the last five years. The property was purchased by tech entrepreneur Zach Klein for $280K as a place to commune with nature and friends. The Beaver Brook land came equipped with an amazing off grid cabin, designed by its previous owner, Scott Newkirk. Klein had more than a passing interest in small cabins, having started the appropriately named Cabin Porn blog, the web’s leading repository for...

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