Planting starts at London Olympic Park wetland

Planting Day at London Olympic Park Wetland

TV Gardener Charlie Dimmock helping local children with planting

The first of 4,000 new semi-mature trees are taking root in the London’s Olympic Park with around 100 ash, cherry and hazel trees, grown in Hampshire, already planted. The first of 300,000 wetland plants, grown in Norfolk and Wales for the UK’s largest ever urban river and wetland planting, were laid on the river banks today by Minister for Sport and the Olympics Hugh Robertson, TV Gardener Charlie Dimmock, Olympic Gold medal winner Jonathan Edwards, Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) Chairman John Armitt and children from the Olympic Park construction crew.

The new reed beds are being created in a large wetland bowl in the north of the Olympic Park, formerly a 100 year old landfill site, where visitors during the Games will be able to relax and watch the action in 2012 on live screens. In legacy the riverside area will be a tranquil space for people and wildlife which will also help protect 5,000 properties in the area from flooding.

Over 30 species of native reeds, rushes, grasses, sedges, wet wildflowers and irises have been grown initially by Salix in its nursery on the Gower peninsular in Wales with around a third grown from cuttings and seeds collected in and around the Olympic Park before construction started in 2008.

You can watch the park turn from brown to green with two new webcams

LDA Design in partnership with Hargreaves Associates was selected to design the Olympic Park parklands in spring 2008 and detailed designs were published in November 2008. They are supported by Sarah Price Landscapes, University of Sheffield, Sutton-Vane Associates and Waterwise SolutionsHilliers Nurseries in Hampshire is supplying over 2000 semi-mature trees for the Olympic Park. Salix was appointed to supply over 300,000 wetland plants for the Olympic Park. The detailed design of the river planting was carried out by Atkins.

Wetland Plants at Salix's Norfolk site

SOURCE: LONDON 2012
IMAGES: LONDON 2012

NYC launches urbancanvas Design Competition

A design competition to improve construction sites across New York City.  The competition is seeking artists and design professionals to  develop creative artwork for construction fences, sidewalk sheds, supported scaffolds and cocoons in New York City.

This competition, created by the Department of Buildings and Department of Cultural Affairs and supported by The Rockefeller Foundation, is a unique opportunity for artists and designers across the United States to contribute to New York City’s urban landscape.

Registration Deadline is 5:00pm EST July 19, 2010

Submission Deadlines is 3:30pm EST on July 28, 2010

NOTE: Design competition is limited to residents of the United States of America.

For more information go to the urbancanvas competition website

Edward Uhlir unimpressed by Lansdowne Park design

Following up from recent reports about the Lansdowne Park competition the Ottawa Citizen is reporting Edward Uhlir, Executive Director of Millennium Park and who oversaw the building of Chicago’s Millennium Park has commented that

“The landscape plan is pretty timid in terms of design,” Uhlir, who is now the executive director of the Millennium Park project, said Monday. “They took a lot of things from the plan that made it interesting. Is what’s left going to create the excitement and fun that people want to have? I am not sure.”

Read more Edward Uhlir’s comments at the SOURCE: OTTAWA CITIZEN – Lansdowne landscape plan ‘pretty timid’

Michael Van Valkenburgh gives MVVA background at community meeting

Recently found this video of Michael Van Valkenburgh giving a background to MVVA and their initial approach to the North Grant Park at a community meeting. It is always interesting to see landscape architects presenting their company. The video does have a few edits and is not complete presentation but still worth a watch and will interesting to look back at in 10-20 years.

SOURCE: Youtube
Video: Lynn Becker

Canadian National Urban Design Awards announced

Urban design and architectural excellence play an important role in maintaining and enhancing the quality of life in Canadian cities.

The Royal Architectural Institute of Canada, the Canadian Institute of Planners and the Canadian Society of Landscape Architects in cooperation with Canadian municipalities, wish to promote public and private awareness of that role.

Recently the award winners were announced:

Community Improvement Projects

Ottawa Children’s Garden (Ottawa, ON)
Sustainable Living Ottawa East and the Community of Old Ottawa East

Urban Design Plans

Transformation of the Bonaventure Expressway at the Montreal Downtown Gateway (Montreal, QC)
Groupe Cardinal Hardy collaboration: Urban Soland :
paysages urbains and Société du Havre de Montréal

Urban Architecture

Manitoba Hydro Place (Winnipeg, MB)
Kuwabara Payne McKenna Blumberg Architects, Smith Carter Architects & Engineers, Transsolar KlimaEngineering

Urban Fragments

Capital Health Centre (Edmonton, AB)
Dub Architects Ltd.

Civic Design Projects

Waterloo Public Square (Waterloo, ON)
GSP Group Inc.

Special Jury Award: Sustainable Development

Tower Renewal Opportunities Book (Toronto, ON)
E.R.A. Architects Inc. and the John H. Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design, University of Toronto, Project lead Graeme Stewart, ERA Architects Inc.

Special Jury Award: Small or Medium Community Urban Design

HRMbyDesign (Halifax, NS)
The Downtown Halifax Plan, Heritage and Design Department, Halifax Regional Municipality

Student Award

City_Program: Hybrid Area (Montreal, QC)
Virginie Pontbriand, Anik Malderis and Alexandre Guilbeault
(Université de Montréal)
Certificates of Merit

Urban Design Plans

The RiverWalk Master Plan (Calgary, AB)
Stantec Consulting Ltd.

Urban Architecture

Life Sciences Complex, McGill University (Montreal, QC)
Diamond and Schmitt Architects, Provencher Roy + Associés Architectes, Architects in Joint Venture

Royal Conservatory, TELUS Centre for Performance and Learning (Toronto, ON)
Kuwabara Payne McKenna Blumberg Architects

Civic Design Projects

Spadina WaveDeck (Toronto, ON)
WEST 8 + DTAH Joint Venture

SOURCE: RAIC

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