Marina in Chennai gets a makeover

The Hindu reports

Clutter-free and aesthetic walking spaces are an important aspect of urban design. By redesigning the promenade along the Marina beach front, the Corporation of Chennai has taken a step in the right direction. Two years since it went on stream, the project is nearing completion. “Everything has been done. It is time for Nature to take over and make the lawns verdant,” says K. Raghuraman, the landscape architect who has given the promenade its unique contours and character (K. Raghuraman Landscape Architects has been engaged in the design of 10 other beach promenades around the coasts of South India).

Read more at the [SOURCE: The Hindu: Marina gets a makeover]

International urban heritage conference in Riyadh, 2010

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia will host next April (2010) the First International Conference on Urban and Architectural Heritage in Islamic Countries (FCUAHIC) at the Saudi capital of Riyadh to discuss the role of urban heritage in the cultural, social, and economic development in the Islamic countries.

For more information:

Ideas blossom on Berlin Wall death strip

The area that bounded the Berlin Wall stretches for 155km(96miles) known as No-Mans Land and the death strip is a vast green oasis running through Berlin, some watchtowers remain.
The AFP article tells us that

Dutch landscape architect Joyce van den Berg has set herself such a task, saying secret gardens, art installations and recreational spaces could flourish in what she calls a “trauma landscape”.

She sees her work as a race against time, and her ideas range from the fanciful to the highly promising.

Read more at the [SOURCE: AFP: Landscapes, ideas blossom on Berlin Wall death strip]

UMass plans to open urban design center in downtown Springfield reports

The University of Massachusetts at Amherst will open an urban design center downtown early next year, marking the school’s first step to locate programs in Springfield.

Plans call for the design center to open on Feb. 1 and to provide a variety of programs in architecture, landscape architecture, conservation and regional planning, officials said.

SOURCE: – UMass plans to open urban design center in downtown Springfield

Halprin, the tribal elder of American landscape architecture

Lawrence Halprin, 93 passed away earlier this week. A great landscape architect who designed hundreds of projects throughout his 60 year career and was famous for such designs as the Roosevelt Memorial, Ghirardelli Square, a 1.5-mile walkway overlooking the Old City of Jerusalem; a new pedestrian approach to Yosemite Falls.

The New York Times quoted Charles Birnbaum, founder and president of the Cultural Landscape Foundation as saying in relation to Halprin:

“He almost single-handedly reclaimed the city as the purview of the landscape architect,”

Read more about Lawrence Halrpins career at – Lawrence Halprin, Landscape Architect, Dies at 93

Washington Post – Urban projects won wide acclaim for American landscape architect

San Francisco Chronicle – Lawrence Halprin – landscape architect

Tim Tompkins – Time Square Alliance Interview by Streetsblog

Streetsblog San Francisco recently had an interview  with Tim Tompkins, President of the Times Square Alliance to see what they could learn about Times Square public spaces.

Tim Tompkins have a few interesting thoughts such as

What I see is that what’s been happening is part of a larger movement in terms of the revitalization of cities. It’s kind of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, where you need to take care of the basics of comfort and security first before you can even think about anything else………


I think the biggest change is that now, especially with the introduction of Duffy Square, which opened in October 2008, [we redefined the] expectations for Times Square as a public space. Until we actually had Duffy Square as a kind of a concrete, tangible paradigm, it was all theoretical, and people couldn’t really experience it.

to read the full interview go to the [SOURCE: Streetsblog San Francisco]

Playground to be designed by game designer

In recent News via Guardian newspaper a game designer, Keita Takahashi will be working with Nottingham City Council and its landscape architect to come up with a playground design for Woodthorpe Grange Park.


Ed note: I think this will offer a new perspective on playground design. Hopefully, this will create a playground that will encourage children to spend more time in the landscape. It is good to see a city that could create a playground that responds to the new generation of children who are growing up in an age when games are played virtually not physically.

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