Chicago 2016 Olympic bid – Historical Park or Reinvigorated Landscape – Opinion

Chicago’s Olympic 2016 bud organizers have changed the location of the aquatics centre to the west side of Washington Park next to the proposed Olympic Stadium however this has not gone done too well with local historians and residents as the park is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The other cause for concern is Washington park was designed by the father of American landscape architecture Fredrick Law Olmsted (also designed of New York’s Central Park). This last point causes more concern from historians and landscape architects across the USA.

This raises a few questions about the role of landscape and landscape architects in society.

Are landscape designs meant to be kept as historical records of the past when they were built or are they meant to evolve with the uses, needs and wants of the city’s citizens?

Are the landscape designs created today envisioned for the future 100 years or the next 10–25years?

For what I have gleaned from the internet that Washington park has itself gone through numerous changes such as sheep grazing, and a conservatory which no longer exist in the park.

We often hold designs of the past in high esteem due to their perceived historical value and romantic notions of place. However, this can often impede or restrict development of landscapes and the possibilities of creating new places that could invigorate a city. Continuing to maintain parks as a historical record or picture postcard landscape often hinders landscape design and management as any change is often seen by users as desecrating the “great” design. This often occurs in landscapes around the world with the replacement or changes to park buildings or trees.

Although landscapes are integral to daily lives and wellbeing of residents changing the design of a landscape such as a park can often reinvigorate the landscape and attract new visitors from around the city and great a new sense of energy and activity in the park.

The Olympic bid should be about the Games and winning for the right reasons, as we have seen in the past Olympics can rejuvenate a city’s community and landscape.

For more information on the Olympic Bid goto Chicago 2016

Also goto the starting point for this op-ed piece
[SOURCE: Chicago Tribune – Chicago Olympic venue switcheroo: Right for the city's bid, but right for its historic parks?]


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Finalists announced in RIBA terrace contest – Architects Journal

Dan Pearson, Glowacka Rennie Architects, Burd Haward Architects and designers Studio Weave and Millimetre have been short listed for RIBA terrace contest

SOURCE: Architects Journal – Finalists announced in RIBA terrace contest.

Archinect : Features : Beyond Organic – An interview with Landscape Architect David Font at Design Miami

Archinect features an interview with Landscape Architect David Font about his creation ‘Beyond Organic’ which was at Design Miami Click title to see the video


[Video SOURCE:  Archinect – David Font at Design Miami from Jacob Slevin on Vimeo.]

 [SOURCE: Archinect : Features : Beyond Organic - An interview with Landscape Architect David Font at Design Miami].

West 8 Urban Design & Landscape Architecture Spadina Wavedeck nominated for Brit Insurance Design Awards 2009 – West 8

West 8 + DTAH’s recently completed Spadina Wave Deck for Waterfront Toronto has been nominated for this year’s Brit Insurance Design Awards. Brit Insurance Design Awards is the Design Museum London’s annual exploration of the most innovative, interesting and forward looking new work in design of all kinds.

[SOURCE: West 8 Urban Design & Landscape Architecture / news / Spadina Wavedeck nominated for Brit Insurance Design Awards 2009]

Video: Alsop and Schwartz debate – Wallpaper.com

Wallpaper.com have presented a great video with a dialogue between Martha Schwartz and Will Alsop and the roles of landscape architects. A ‘must see’ for all landscape architects
VIDEO LINK

Wallpaper.com excerpt

“When Will Alsop questioned the role of landscape architecture in the development of public spaces in a recent speech, US-born London-based landscape architect Martha Schwartz couldn’t resist a response.”

SOURCE: Wallpaper.com  – Video: Alsop and Schwartz debate

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