The 240 hectare Tokachi Millennium Forest is the brainchild of the entrepreneur Mitsushige Hayashi, who acquired the land with a view to offsetting the carbon footprint of his national newspaper business, Tokachi Mainichi. The masterplan, which I contributed to with the local Japanese landscape designer Fumiaki Takano, is marketed as having a sustainable vision of a thousand years, and this big thinking aims to not only to make the newspaper business carbon neutral, but also to preserve and prevent the further loss of natural habitats on the island to development. Hayashi believes that, in order for this vision to be viable, education is key. Helping it’s users to take ownership of the park is the best way to ensure it’s future. Continue reading Tokachi Millennium Forest | Shimizu Japan | Dan Pearson Studio
As we enter December and start to look back at landscape architecture projects of 2012, there is one project that stands out – The Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. A park that involved numerous landscape architecture firms and allied professionals. The Landscape Institute recently published a short video – The Olympic Park: a Landscape Legacy produced by Room60. The video shows the transformational power of landscape and how various landscape architects can join together as a team.
Since the beginning of the 21st century, Beijing has made huge strides to solidify its position as one of the world’s great cities. It is a city that is modernizing rapidly— skyscrapers are rising out of fallow fields, a new transportation system is extending the reach of the city, and environmental initiatives are improving air and water quality. Fresh ideas are also emerging, while still embracing the rich traditions of the past. Near Songzhuang, a quiet village on the outskirts of Beijing, a unique opportunity exists to create a new urban district dedicated entirely to the cultivation of new ideas. The National Creative Cluster (NCC) is envisioned as the country’s preeminent knowledge hub, making the district a center for China’s innovative home-grown talent, and a destination for the world’s most creative thinkers. Sasaki’s master plan for NCC – selected in May 2012 for implementation – focuses on five structuring principles that underscore and support the overarching philosophy of the district: to bring industries with shared values and complementary skills and technologies together to help spark new ideas.
OLIN, has led the design and construction of Canal Park in Washington, D.C. The park opened to the public on November 16, 2012. One of the first parks built as part of the District’s Anacostia Waterfront Initiative, Canal Park has been designed as a vibrant social gathering place and an economic catalyst for the surrounding neighborhood. The park is also a model of sustainable design, serving as a pilot project for the Sustainable Sites Initiative (SITES™) and a candidate for LEED® Gold certification. Continue reading Washington Canal Park | Washington D.C. USA | OLIN
Catherine Seavitt Nordenson says environmentally friendly ‘soft infrastructure’ mitigates flood damage without sending harm elsewhere. The flooding caused by Superstorm Sandy prompted calls from New York State Gov. Andrew Cuomo and other officials to consider building storm surge barriers to protect Lower Manhattan from future catastrophes. But, such a strategy could make things even worse for outlying areas that were hit hard by the hurricane, City College of New York Associate Professor of Landscape Architecture Catherine Seavitt Nordenson warns.