Category Archives: Landscape Architecture

What do the Netherlands, Istanbul, and Japan have in common?

Students, do you want to travel this summer? You can earn credit for school living in Europe's largest port city, sketching buildings in the former capital of the Roman Empire, or participating in a traveling design studio across Japan. There are no language prerequisites for our design-based programs in the Netherlands, Istanbul, and Japan. Detailed program information (including cost) is available on the University's Learning Abroad Center website. Sustainable Urban Design in Rotterdam, Netherlands May 13 to June 2 Where: Based in Rotterdam, Netherlands with visits to Utrecht, Amsterdam Docklands, and Biesbosch National Park What: A course focused on climate change and sustainable urban design Who: Landscape Architecture, Architecture, Civil Engineering, and Urban and Regional Planning students Info: Detailed…

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Master of Landscape Architecture Student Erica Shearer Remaking Detroit by Design

The population of Detroit fell by 25% between 2000 and 2010. While the Motor City make news for its growing number of vacant lots and abandoned homes, community groups are working hard to revitalize their city. Their efforts attracted the attention of Master of Landscape Architecture student Erica Shearer, who is working on a project exploring the role designers can play in community building. "While the city has been struggling for decades, the people have adapted. Amazing things are happening," saysShearer, who has been conducting a series of interviews and focus group with residents to understand how landscape architects can benefit from adapting the models of engagement used by successful community groups around Detroit. "I have listened to the…

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Can Design Change Food Safety Behavior?

Can design change food safety behavior? Students on a team from TERI University in Delhi, India and the University of Minnesota, including Master of Landscape Architecture student Allyson Czechowicz, asked questions like these during Acara's multi-disciplinary course last fall. Acara is a program through the Institute on the Environment that prepares young leaders to take on environmental challenges facing the world. The program's annual Acara Challenge brings together international teams of students from around the United States and India to develop entrepreneurial solutions to specific sustainable development challenges. In 2011 the theme for the Acara Challenge was food security. At the end of the semester, Czechowicz and her teammates presented their business idea for a food safety consulting and…

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Landscape Architecture Students Work with Frogtown to Create Pop-Up Tree Nursery

University of Minnesota landscape architecture students are collaborating with Saint Paul Parks and Recreation Department, Frogtown residents, and the Frogtown Neighborhood Association to create a temporary nursery for 4-6 months during 2012. The pop-up tree nursery will be located on the corner of Dale and Lafond avenues for one growing season and include a mix of shade, fruit, and nut-bearing trees. The project aims to inform Frogtown residents and the city about the tree canopy deficit in their neighborhood, introduce arboriculture to Frogtown, educate residents about the role of trees in the urban environment and in the world, and provide free trees or trees at a reduced cost to Frogtown residents to plant in their yards. The overall goal…

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2012 Imagine Fund Annual Award and Special Events Winners Announced

The University of Minnesota has chosen the more than 150 recipients of its 2012 Imagine Fund Annual Awards and Special Events Grants. Supported by a grant from the McKnight Foundation, the Imagine Fund is a unique systemwide program that supports projects in the arts, humanities and design at the University of Minnesota. "These disciplines at the University of Minnesota advance rigorous ways of thinking about the changing world, and on behalf of the entire Imagine Fund committee, I want to thank all of the applicants, as well as the university and outgoing Provost Tom Sullivan, for their steadfast commitment to the arts, humanities and design," said professor Renee Cheng, chair of the U of M Imagine Fund Awards Committee…

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Christopher Ochs (MLA and MURP '06) Appointed to Serve on the Transportation Committee of Saint Paul's City Planning Commission

Christopher Ochs, ASLA, APA (MLA and MURP '06) has been appointed to serve on the Transportation Committee of Saint Paul's City Planning Commission. Ochs is a landscape designer and project manager for a local landscape design-build company. He has been recognized with multiple residential design awards by the Minnesota Nursery and Landscape Association and was awarded the HWS Cleveland Award by the American Society of Landscape Architects-MN chapter for demonstrating the potential to be a leader in the profession. Ochs chose a career in landscape architecture following a ten year career in freight transportation. His broad knowledge of the ecological, urban, and rural landscapes is based on his experience in the built environment and numerous travels in the U.S….

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Turning Suburban Blights into Community Hubs

Natalie Ross (MLA '11) was shortlisted for her project "Combat Concrete" in the Strip Appeal ideas design competition. An online vote is taking place now through January 16th to decide the Public Choice winner. Architects, creatives and the general public were asked to propose innovative ideas for the aesthetic reinvention and adaptive reuse of small-scale strip malls in their local neighborhoods. Ross submitted work inspired by an Urban Design Studio class where she investigated a strip mall located in North Minneapolis along Broadway Avenue. Ross worked with Juxtaposition Arts – a local non-profit promoting art and entrepreneurship among youth in North Minneapolis – to understand the space better. Juxtaposition's concern about the lack of fresh food in their neighborhood,…

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Landscape Architecture Students Reinvigorate University Avenue with the Starling Project

The project's name is a metaphor: starlings are birds that use existing nests. In an effort to revitalize vacant storefronts along the Central Corridor light rail line, students in the Landscape Architecture program are playing matchmaker. The Starling Project aims to bring property owners and local community organizations together for month-to-month opportunities while University Ave is under construction. "The economic downturn has led to a surge of entrepreneurial thinking in all fields," says co-founder Ben Shardlow in a press release. "Many individuals and groups are nimble and flexible enough to benefit from having a space month at an attractive price, and new enough to prefer that to a longer contract." The project organizers, including Landscape Architecture student Kristen Murray…

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