SERA Simulation of Tree Canopies - Credit: Sean T. Hammond
Sean Hammond and Karl Niklas have published a paper in the August 2009 edition of American Journal of Botany presenting an algorithm that could be used to predict plant communities. The algorithm known as spatially explicit, reiterative algorithm, or SERA explores whether changes occurring in plant communities, such as self-thinning and the competitive displacement of one species by another, can be attributed to the characteristics of the individual plants that comprise the community.
“Remarkably, our model predicts the behavior of real plant populations, and thus suggests to us that many ‘complex’ ecological interactions emerge as a result of a few very ‘simple’ processes,” commented Dr. Niklas. SERA may be very useful in predicting changes in community development and composition as environmental and climatic variability increases.
The Calgary Municipal Land Corporation(CMLC) has announced a bridge design competition for St.Patrick’s Bridge.
CMLC has been charged with the responsibility of implementing public infrastructure improvements that will be the catalyst for private and public sector development in the Rivers District with a focus on East Village. The design and construction of a pedestrian/bicycle bridge – St. Patrick’s Bridge – is an important component of the infrastructure improvements in the Rivers District. CMLC has initiated a competitive process for the conceptual design of the pedestrian/bicycle bridge which crosses the Bow River and provides crucial links between the communities on the north and south of its banks with city attractions, amenities and pathway systems.
CMLC is committed to ensuring that the revitalization of the Rivers District provides the city, the province and the country with an excellent asset for Calgary to remain among the best places in the world to live, work, play and visit.
Glenn Murcutt, the Pritzker prize-winning architect has spoken out about the new and revised architecture and landscape architecture at Newcastle University. Murcutt, particlarly points out that he is amazed at the cutting down of trees and the change in plant material used on the site. He goes on to online that the design process should have been different and consultation with the original architects and masterplanners.
In April 2009, The Architecture Foundation organised three roundtable debates to examine the nature of the dramatic economic and ecological challenges facing built environment practitioners. The debates were titled – AND NOW WHAT: Rethinking Spatial Practice During Crisis. The Architecture Foundation recently posted the video on Vimeo. Interesting to watch with many valid points to think about the built environment profession.