NCPC Selects Five Firms for President’s Park South Design Competition

*UPDATE* NCPC has unveiled the designs and we recently published the concepts 2011.06.21

The National Capital Planning Commission (NCPC) has invited five of the country’s leading architecture and landscape design firms to develop proposals to beautify and improve the visitor experience at President’s Park South, the area immediately south of the White House. President’s Park South is one of the most visited locations in the nation’s capital, and represents a unique design challenge that requires sensitive integration of security requirements into a landscape of extraordinary cultural and historic significance. The area includes Sherman Park, the First Division Monument, the Ellipse and its side panels, as well as the associated roadways in the area, including E Street, NW, which has been closed to automobile traffic for the past decade.

Twenty-three firms responded to NCPC’s call for qualifications, the initial stage of a national design competition begun in March. Based on the review and recommendations of NCPC’s selection committee, and with support from the Interagency Security Task Force, NCPC invited five firms to advance to the design phase of the competition.
The selected firms are:

  • Hood Design Studio in San Francisco, CA;
  • Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates in New York City, NY
  • Reed Hilderbrand Landscape Architects in Watertown, MA;
  • Rogers Marvel Architects in New York City, NY; and
  • SASAKI in Watertown, MA.

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St.Petersburg Zoo: TN PLUS and Beckmann N’Thépé

St.Petersburg Zoo

Recently more details for the St.Peterburg Zoo were released by the TN PLUS landscape architects and Beckmann N’Thépé architects who won the design competition last Decemeber. The competition was organized by the city of Saint Petersburg.  The site is in the northern suburbs of the city not far from the Bay of Finland, in the frontier between a new residential district in plain development with high rise buildings and a natural reserve. The 300 hectares of the site is actually covered by a pioneer, wetland forest and the zone is frequently flooded [as it is quite usual in that area]. The project restrains on about one third of the site to leave the rest untouched respecting a natural puffer zone for the reserve and to propose a large nature park to the locals.

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West 8 wins Constitutional Court design competition

West 8 - Constitutional Court, Germany

The Paul Baumgartner-designed Constitutional Court in Karlsruhe is being restored. The campus of the court complex is to be revitalized and situated adjacent to the botanical garden and is part of the Schlossgarten.

West 8’s winning competition entry features a grassland with stylized concrete tracks which make a patterned landscape in which the buildings float. The design is characterized by its modesty, and by the strategic integration of the monumental buildings with their broader context.

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NIP Paysage wins Place de l’Acadie design competition

NIP Paysage-Place-de-l'Acadie

The design competition was held as part of the project to redevelop Place de l’Acadie and Place Henri-Bourassa, was intended primarily to produce a concept for creating areas to refresh the surrounding air in order to help fight the urban heat island effect.

The jury found that the project from NIP paysage stood out for the variety, quality and cohesiveness of the proposed areas, the potential performance in producing coolness, the user-friendliness of the meeting spaces, and the concept’s technical feasibility and viability, especially regarding its adaptability for future stages.

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MRDC | Turenscape: THE RESILIENT RIVER

Minneapolis Riverfront Design Competition Finalist

Minneapolis Riverfront Design Competition-Turenscape

Our design approach celebrates the Resilient River; we believe in the power of nature to heal, and the relevance of the River in the life of the people of Minneapolis. We take the long view, and see that changes in industry along the banks have happened before, driven by the market but also by the guiding hand of public policy and the aspirations of the River’s citizens. While we recognize the role of industry, and in many cases are enthralled by the scale of its work along the banks, we also remain steadfast in our belief that this landscape is worthy of respect, even reverence, and protection from harm. Our purpose then is to aid in healing the riverfront as a place of critical ecological importance, as well as a place for working and living. Where the River has been an excuse for dividing neighborhoods and peoples, we desire a place where people can come together. We concur with the view that parks can create new value on adjacent lands, but also propose that a new ecology of parks is necessary that makes productive use of the rich riverfront lands and waters, as well as the people on its shores.

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