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A scene from the Women's March on Washington, Washington DC, January 2017.

Proactive Practices: Raising the social stakes in design

31 Jan 2017, Jillian Walliss

The Proactive Practices project aims to uncover the characteristics and workings of a successful public interest design practice.

Practice
A visualization of the WestConnex M5 project at St Peters, Sydney, which will see the destruction of 500 trees at the southern end of Sydney Park.

Reflections on Paul Mees OAM

25 Jan 2017, Andrew Jackson

In response to recent destruction of heritage homes and parkland for Sydney’s WestConnex road project, we remember the life and work of planning academic Paul Andrew Mees (1961–2013).

Practice
A concept image of the Waterloo Estate redevelopment.

Let’s be frank about diversity and renewal

23 Jan 2017, Laura Wynne

Renewing public housing estates to achieve a balanced ‘social mix’ has come to be seen by governments, planners and state development corporations as a remedy for underfunded public housing estates. But is estate renewal really the panacea it’s so often claimed to be?

Practice
The Gen Y Demonstration Housing Project in Perth, designed by David Barr Architect, is intended to give would-be Gen Y home buyers a step onto the property ladder. Appearing as a single dwelling, it is in fact made up of three one-bedroom apartments with access to a communal garden area.

Generation Rent: Is it a problem, and what can planners do about it?

13 Jan 2017, Catherine Gilbert

Young people today are renting for longer before buying a home, and there is growing concern that many may never be able to.

Practice
The Hazelwood Open Cut Mine boundary plotted in yellow over an aerial image of central Melbourne at the same scale.

Latrobe Valley Open Cuts: Wastelands or treasured assets?

9 Jan 2017, David Langmore

Equivalent in size to Sydney Harbour, the Latrobe Valley’s open-cut mines offer massive potential for future uses. But rehabilitation must be granted the critical public and governmental attention it deserves.

Practice
Abdisalam and his wife Rauha with their six children in a forest camp near the BP service station refugee camp of Evzoni, Greece. They left their home in Deir ez-Zor, Syria, in September 2012, and after spending years in Lebanon and Turkey they arrived in Greece two months before this photo was taken.

Postcards from Greece

6 Jan 2017, Rocco Rorandelli

This photographic essay by Rocco Rorandelli of TerraProject Photographers explores Greece’s refugee camps, including the people who live there and the possessions they carry with them from their homelands.

Practice
Hassell's proposal for the Ribbon at Sydney’s Darling Harbour was recommended for approval by the NSW Department of Planning and Environment in June 2016, despite drawing “serious concerns” about the building’s bulk and impact on public space.

Putting the public interest back into planning

19 Dec 2016, Patrick Fensham

Patrick Fensham argues that planners need to re-engage with the public interest and the issues and challenges that matter.

Practice
The scheme includes the Eden Project, a contemporary art space, a produce market, an Antarctic and science precinct, a hotel and commercial and residential uses.

Michael Wright and Cassandra Chilton on MONA’s vision for Macquarie Point

15 Dec 2016, Ricky Ray Ricardo

LandscapeAustralia speaks with Rush Wright Associates about MONA’s vision for Australia’s first major public acknowledgment of the Black War at Macquarie Point.

Practice
Snøhetta is a transdisciplinary practice combining architecture, interior, landscape and brand design.

Kjetil Trædal Thorsen: People–process relationships

14 Dec 2016, Claire Martin, Ricky Ray Ricardo

Norway-based Kjetil Trædal Thorsen speaks with Landscape Architecture Australia about rapid prototyping, the internationalization of architecture and the value of “getting the musician in the engineer to come out.”

Practice
Hazelwood power station in Victoria's Latrobe Valley is due to close by March 2017.

Planning for a sustainable future in the Latrobe Valley

12 Dec 2016, Cat Nadel

Cat Nadel of Environment Victoria discusses their recent report Life After Coal: Pathways to a Just and Sustainable Transition for the Latrobe Valley.

Practice
Kampung Pulo in Jakarta is a 200-year-old informal settlement on the banks of the Ciliwung River.

Designing with uncertainty

5 Dec 2016, Matthew Hamilton, Niki Schwabe

With climate-related disasters predicted to increase over the next century, can landscape architects play a productive role in the delivery of aid to the world’s poor and displaced?

Practice
Triggering empathy: a bullfighting protest in front of the Guggenheim Museum, Bilbao, Spain, 2009.

Charles Landry: Applying emotional intelligence

2 Dec 2016, Claire Martin

Charles Landry chats with Claire Martin about the lack of emotional and aesthetic intelligence that is applied to city-making.

Practice
Think of all the resources needed to transform Shenzhen, a fishing town 35 years ago, into a megacity of more than 10 million people.

Our cities need to go on a resource diet

1 Dec 2016, Hayley Henderson, Hesam Kamalipour

The New Urban Agenda adopted at the UN Habitat III conference outlines a vision for sustainable urban development, one that recognizes the need to use resources more efficiently.

Practice
The Greater Sydney Commission has outlined a three-cities approach for Sydney's future: Eastern City, centred on the CBD; Central City, centred on Parramatta; and Western City, centred around a new airport in the west.

Sarah Hill: Changing the game

28 Nov 2016, Sarah Hill

Sarah Hill, CEO of the Greater Sydney Commission, delivered the following speech for the 2016 PIA Kemsley Oration, which in 2016 was co-located with the presentation of the Australian Urban Design Awards.

Practice
The City of Adelaide created a dual naming process to bring Kaurna words into the cityscape. Pictured here is the Riverbank Bridge by Taylor Cullity Lethlean (TCL), Aurecon and Tonkin Zulaikha Greer (TZG), which crosses the Karrawirra Pari (River Torrens).

The Moving City as palimpsest

16 Nov 2016, Frances Wyld

In Australia our cities are built upon the lands of Indigenous peoples, but Indigenous people are still here; their culture is still here. To see it we must stop, listen and look for the signs.

Practice
Not feeling resilient: a scene from post-earthquake Christchurch, New Zealand, 2011.

Being moved by the city

15 Nov 2016, Jacky Bowring

Is our predilection for happiness and the rise of the virtual eroding our connection with each other and our cities?

Practice
The Phase Shifts Park, Taiwan, by Philippe Rahm architectes, Mosbach paysagistes and Ricky Liu and Associates.

Designing for climate change

11 Nov 2016, Jason Toh, Jillian Walliss

Recent research suggests we must look beyond generalized urban cooling strategies to address heat in our cities.

Practice
Highrise construction in Dubai, UAE, where much of the architecture is designed from afar, with little connection to the nuances of place. Juhani Pallasmaa describes it as “almost irresponsible to design buildings in alien cultures.”

Juhani Pallasmaa: Experiencing slowness

9 Nov 2016, Claire Martin, Ricky Ray Ricardo

A conversation with Finnish architect and philosopher Juhani Pallasmaa.

Practice
Salvia spp, Nepeta spp.

Scented Surprises: Plants for memorable sensory experiences

8 Nov 2016, Jane Irwin

Beyond simply visual appeal, a more comprehensive and memorable sensory experience is achieved by incorporating scented plants into public and private landscapes.

Practice
In May 2015, Minister for Canterbury Earthquake Recovery, Hon Gerry Brownlee announced The Memorial Wall, designed by Slovenian architect Grega Vezjak, as the selected design for the Canterbury Earthquake Memorial.

Critique of the unbuilt

4 Nov 2016, Jacky Bowring

Increasingly realistic digital renderings and ubiquitous online commentary necessitate a new framework for informed debate.

Practice
The Adelaide Botanic Garden First Creek Wetland designed by Taylor Cullity Lethlean with SKM, David Lancashire Design and Paul Thompson.

Truth and beauty: The purpose and reception of (botanical) gardens

3 Nov 2016, Stephen Forbes

Stephen Forbes reflects on the love and trust people have in botanic gardens.

Practice
Melbourne is currently experiencing a highrise apartment boom, but there is limited knowledge on the social and psychological outcomes for residents.

Is highrise living bad for you?

2 Nov 2016, Leanne Hodyl

With highrise apartment tower approvals increasing exponentially in Australian cities, it’s important that designers and developers engage with post-occupancy research.

Practice
Looking over the old town of Quito, Ecuador - host city of the Habitat III summit.

Ten things you need to know about the New Urban Agenda

24 Oct 2016, Lucinda Hartley

Lucinda Hartley reports from the UN Habitat III summit in Quito, Ecuador.

Practice
A view of the landscape park and countryside surrounding Newton House seen from the ruined medieval Dinefwr Castle.

Capability Brown: The Shakespeare of gardening

20 Oct 2016, Sarah Rutherford

The 300th anniversary of the birth of English 18th century landscape designer Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown has prompted a revival of interest in his legacy.

Practice
A water fountain and a change in level in the large courtyard.

From the archives: The Evolution of a Gardener (part 2)

19 Oct 2016, George Seddon

In part two of The Evolution of a Gardener, published in Landscape Australia February 1996, George Seddon reflects on his sixth and final garden in Fremantle, Western Australia.

Practice
Water-inundated rice fields in An Giang province, Vietnam. The province is located in the Mekong Delta, in the south-western part of the country.

Tidal economy: The Lower Mekong Delta

18 Oct 2016, Benjamin Kronenberg

Exploring the shifting landscapes along the Mekong River’s labyrinth of tributaries.

Practice
Grassed areas in the Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital “secret garden,” with views to the Brisbane River and CBD.

Healing gardens: Hospital design using nature to heal and soothe

17 Oct 2016, Cheryl Desha, Katharina Nieberler-Walker

A series of visitors’ books, or “bench diaries,” were left on a roof garden at Brisbane’s Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital when the hospital first opened.

Practice
Brisbane River, Brisbane.

The power of design in flood-prone communities

14 Oct 2016, Gillian Lawson

In Queensland, architects, landscape architects and urban designers are currently on the frontline in providing design solutions for flood-prone areas.

Practice
A quiet seat, spring 2013.

Border force: Unofficial gardening

13 Oct 2016, Trevor Pitkin

Trevor Pitkin has cultivated an “unofficial” garden along a strip of railway land in suburban Melbourne.

Practice
The 'Dalmatian meadow' garden at Murphy Street, Richmond, 1989.

From the archives: The Evolution of a Gardener (part 1)

12 Oct 2016, George Seddon

In this two-part essay for Landscape Australia from 1995, George Seddon reflects on the five gardens he created over forty years.

Practice
Wynyard Park in 1906, just before the fences were removed to allow public access to this previously private open space.

City of Sydney parks

6 Oct 2016, Anne-Maree Whitaker

Tracing the history of Sydney’s parks, from European settlement to today.

Practice
Geology can sometimes make a powerful visual statement. Where it does so, respect it by avoiding trivial 'beautification', or structures that are out of scale or character. Tidbinbilla, ACT.

The Genius Loci and Australian Landscape

5 Oct 2016, George Seddon

In his first essay for Landscape Australia back in 1979, George Seddon argues landscape architects must resist the effects of homogenizing technology by respecting the genius loci (sense of place) when designing.

Practice
The Navy Yards Central Green by James Corner Field Operations is a five-acre park in the heart of a new corporate centre in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Australian landscape architects in the USA

4 Oct 2016, Alex Georgouras

Alex Georgouras catches up with three Australian expatriate landscape architects emerging within the North American tableau – Richard Weller, Matt Grunbaum and Victoria Marshall.

Practice
William Street, Sydney after the Cross City Tunnel project.

Making the most of major infrastructure

30 Sep 2016, Gareth Collins

Working with local and state governments and the private sector to achieve the best project outcomes for the built environment.

Practice
Spearwood, Perth, Western Australia – aerial view of a housing scheme from the early 2000s. Note the large sizes of the houses.

What has happened to the Australian backyard?

29 Sep 2016, Tony Hall

Larger dwellings in suburban developments mean less opportunity for biodiversity and canopy cover in our cities.

Practice
Old parish maps give clues to the old landscape with names and the location of the Bundian Way.

The Bundian Way

28 Sep 2016, Sophie Wilkinson

Traversing some of Australia’s wildest terrain, this ancient 360-plus-kilometre Aboriginal trail celebrates the culture of walking, connectedness to country and connectedness to soul.

Practice
Mount Alvernia College, Kedron by Lat27 and m3architecture.

The science is in: Gardening is good for you

27 Sep 2016, Chris Williams

The science of therapeutic horticulture.

Practice
A linear park designed by Aspect Studios would be created underneath an elevated section of the proposed “sky rail.”

Levelling on the landscape value of rail corridors

15 Sep 2016, Craig Guthrie

A current program of the Victorian Government to remove fifty level crossings in Melbourne has generated much community debate. Craig Guthrie looks at the urban design and public realm potentials of the project.

Practice
Alcatraz Island National Park in the US includes historic gardens created by those who lived there during its military and prison eras until the penitentiary closed in 1963. The Alcatraz Historic Gardens Project has restored these gardens.

Wassailing, national parks and peopling cultural landscapes

28 Jun 2016, Paulette Wallace

How should we conceive of and manage cultural landscapes in Australia?

Practice
At Superkilen a boxing ring “cultivates conflict” in the public realm.

Cultivating Conflict: Martin Rein-Cano

20 Jun 2016, Ricky Ray Ricardo

Martin Rein-Cano is principal and co-founder of Topotek 1, a Berlin-based landscape architecture practice.

Practice
Australian War Memorial, Canberra.

World Wars and Landscape Architecture

29 May 2016, Gareth Collins

One hundred years since the beginning of World War I, how has war influenced the evolution of the landscape architecture?

Practice