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Escuela Ecologica


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Escuela Ecologica


About This Project
In collaboration with Architects Without Borders, a group of UW landscape architecture, civil engineering, and global health students developed the project Escuela Ecologica Pitagoras to address issues of water scarcity and sustainability. Over 150 volunteers comprised of parents, teachers, and community leaders worked together over the course of three weeks to implement the design as a reality.

Challenge
Living in the constantly evolving outer edge of Lima, the residents of the informal settlement of Lomas de Zapallal are the most vulnerable to a looming water crisis predicted to leave 30% of Peru’s population without freshwater within the next 10 years. Without consistent rainfall the existing project site was an eroding sand pit.

Solution
By harvesting and filtering greywater from bathroom sinks, this much desired garden provides students with access to nature and serves as a tangible tool for ecological learning. Two years later, the irrigation system is still functioning and the garden has become a favorite outdoor spot amongst staff and students alike.

Recognition
ASLA  American Society of Landscape Architects
National Honor Award for Community Service 2012

EDRA  Environmental Design Research Association
Great Places Design Award 2012


SEED Social, Economic, Ecological, Design
Excellence in Public Interest Design Award 2012

CELA Council of Educators Landscape Architecture
Excellence in Service Learning Award 2014

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Ichi Go Ichi E


Ichi Go Ichi E


About This Project 
As the capstone project for the University of Washington BLA program, from concept to completion students spent two terms designing, drafting, and installing a therapeutic courtyard garden at the Nikkei Manor assisted living home in downtown Seattle.  With the oldest client being 105, and over half of the residents with early signs of dementia, we consulted with an occupational therapist to design the garden with ADA guidelines and integrated supportive features specific to aging populations.

Challenge
The small courtyard serves as the only private green space for all residents and staff of the home. Facing realities of design-build, students had to be flexible in: working with a real client, drafting revisions, property line disputes, construction methods, and having a tight deadline and budget. Strict building codes like fire exit routes and emergency water storage also had to be incorporated seamlessly into the design.

Solution
We named the garden Ichi Go Ichi E, translated as “one moment, one life” hoping that the garden would  serve as a refuge for memory and contemplation. The design is an elegant synthesis of Japanese inspired details expressed in metal, wood, concrete, and seasonal plantings. The garden provides a diversity of gathering spaces that are comfortably scaled to accommodate anywhere from a large gathering to an intimate conversation with an old friend.

Recognition
ASLA  American Society of Landscape Architects
National Honor Award for Community Service 2013

WASLA Washington State Chapter, American Society of Landscape Architects
Merit Award for General Design 2012

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Healing Gardens


Healing Gardens


Bugojno Therapeutic Garden

About This Project
In six weeks, 5 landscape architecture students worked to design and build the first two therapeutic gardens in the country of Bosnia & Herzegovina to serve children with disabilities and their families. The projects incorporate opportunities for exploration, interaction with nature, and community. With cultural stigmas and prejudice of differently-abled individuals and lack of ADA codes throughout BiH, the gardens provide a nurturing environment for these children to grow their minds and spirits.

Challenge
The small site, bisected by the main entry path, created two awkward smaller spaces to work with. Additionally, the entrance to the school lacked any kind of ramp, so students with mobility challenges or who used wheelchairs had to be lifted up two sets of stairs to access the building.

Solution
The first priority was the addition of an ADA ramp that uniquely merges into a small stage. The design responds to small open spaces by creating different zones of activities. On one side, a tree house and horticultural therapy planters – on the other is a grassy berm to watch performances.

 

Tuzla Healing Garden

Challenge
Without any public parks, there was an immediate need for families in the industrial city of Tuzla to have an open space that could accommodate their children’s daily educational programing, but also be used for community gatherings and celebrations.

Solution
The heart of the garden is the large mound and stage, which also serves as an outdoor classroom space.  Interactive ADA horticultural therapy beds and the obstacle course allow students to learn and refine their balance in a natural setting.

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Ollantaytambo


Ollantaytambo


About This Project
Translated in Cuecha as “place of rest” this Incan archeological site located in the heart of Peru's Sacred Valley is a popular tourist destination and serves as the starting point for the three-day trek to Machu Picchu. The site, complete with a 500 year old Incan wall, recently had a playground installed but lacked adequate greenspace. This project was conceived to create a safe space where children could interact with nature and provide a comfortable sitting area for mothers to socialize outside of their homes.

Challenge
The logistics of coordinating, even a small project, in a rural context can be complicated. Without formal nurseries, I sourced plants from avid gardner's backyards. I then had to transport all of the materials, including topsoil, by taxi several hours to town. The proximity of the garden to the ancient wall, which had just recently been refurbished by locals, required careful design consent and sensitivity to local leaders.

Solution
Collaborating with a local NGO to quickly establish a relationship with the community, I engaged local youth in the installation process to give them ownership over the project. The garden transforms the once sparse and dusty playground in to a colorful and textural green space in the heart of the city -where most public spaces are guarded by police and reserved only for tourists, the playground is an amenity for the town’s youth and for the community as a whole to enjoy.

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Just Add Water


Just Add Water


About This Project 
A graduate studio hosted by the Built Environments Lab at the University of Washington, construction management, architecture, and landscape architecture students independently researched and designed solutions to address chronic issues in public health. Additionally, projects were challenged to incorporate modular and deployable components that could be scaled or deployed to respond to potential global disasters.

Challenge
With the recent recession, the number of vacant lots across the city has tripled due to stalled construction projects. In urban areas where green space is limited, these underutilized and often neglected spaces could be transformed into temporary community gardens.

Solution
The vacant lot in Seattle’s University District could serve as a temporary home for the Shiga P-Patch, whose lease expires at the end of the year. A modular system of self-watering containers reduces garden maintenance and can be easily transported to a permanent location.

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Drafting


Drafting