Unsustainable growth – the case of Phoenix, Arizona

Political and business leaders know that their defects and blunders will be excused if they turn in a respectable growth performance: quarterly or annual gains in corporate revenue or GDP are really all that matters. But how did these raw metrics come to surpass all other indicators of well-being? To be able to answer that …

8 Urban design projects that have renewed cities

Great landscape architecture has the potential to modernize and revitalize urban environments, getting people to reconsider their relationship with long-forgotten areas in their cities. The best examples are the ones that take nature as the main character of the story, emphasizing the fact that it is an essential part of life, even in urban surroundings.  Here …

Kasita: the cheap, movable, smart apartment

An Austin-based startup has created a prototype of a prefabricated micro dwelling that can be slotted into a framework like a bottle into a wine rack. The micro-housing startup called Kasita – adapted from the Spanish word for a small house – was launched by a professor-turned-entrepreneur who once lived in a dumpster. The mobile structure is a …

10 impressive landscape architecture projects from China

China has made remarkable advancements in many aspects of development (civil engineering, industry, urbanization, etc.), but landscape architecture can certainly be seen as the most outstanding of all. Here are ten examples of projects where sustainability, functionality, creativity and concern for the environment all come together. 1. Zhengzhou Vanke Central Plaza, by Locus Associates, Zhengzhou …

These 10 cities are rediscovering the value of their rivers

As technology and infrastructure improved, people forgot about the rivers flowing in their cities. Lately, 10 cities have been reconnecting with their rivers.  Since the industrial revolution cities have been designed to take over nature, but now planners are pushing to reintegrate nature into the urban landscape. Rivers are one part of this movement, with some …

New York Lowline – a new vision for parks

The Lowline is a plan to use innovative solar technology to illuminate an historic trolley terminal on the Lower East Side of New York City. The vision is a stunning underground park, providing a beautiful respite and a cultural attraction in one of the world’s most dense, exciting urban environments. New York’s City Hall has …

Madrid plans to cover all unused space with plants

Madrid has been enduring the effects of climate change in the past years and is determined to find solutions to adapt to the challenges of rising global temperatures. The city is seeing more blisteringly hot days with temperatures up to 40 degrees, more severe droughts and heavier floods. One of the measures Madrid is currently planning …

The sustainable house shaped like the Eye of Horus

The Eye of Horus is a fully sustainable house designed by Spanish architect Luis de Garrido, built on the Playa de Cleopatra Island in Turkey. The island is known for the exceptional quality of its sand, said to be different from other nearby beaches. Local legends say that Roman emperor Marc Antony imported the sand especially for Cleopatra …

Amsterdam’s new urban quarter

The municipality of Amsterdam planned to built a new urban quarter just west of Amsterdam’s city center. The chosen place was a barren land of a former railway station marshaling yard. Dutch residential neighborhoods have a traditional layout of streets, pavements, parking spaces, front-and back gardens. But the municipality wanted this quarter to be landscaped differently. The design …

Revitalizing public spaces

Urban community living is shaped by revitalizing public spaces. The vision of landscape architects is central to this process. What makes a city worth living in and enhances its communal aspect are its public spaces. With renewed interest in shaping them to fit into the smart city and green city movements, it is landscape architects …