Three landscape architecture and environmental planning students were recently recognized for innovative design proposals with the second annual Excellence in Landscape Design award.
Funded by the Narayanan Family Foundation, the ELD award supports students who propose a research project exploring innovation in landscape architectural design that relates to environmental issues such as sea level rise, green infrastructure, climate change, wetland restoration, and/or environmental justice, among possible topics for exploration.
This year’s jury was comprised of Jennifer Cooper-Sabo, Landscape Architecture Bureau Manager at San Francisco Public Works, Richard Kennedy, senior principal at James Corner Field Operations, San Francisco, and Laura Tam, Sustainable Development Policy Director at SPUR, San Francisco, and Professor Elizabeth Macdonald and Ari Daman of Narayanan Family Foundation in an advisory capacity.
Cheyenne Concepcion, “Borderland Atlas: Re-drawing the U.S.-Mexico Borderlands”
This proposed project explores the landscape processes, spatial conditions, and lived realities along the length of the U.S.-Mexico border, with the goal of assembling an artist book of the findings. The jury found the proposed project to be topical and important, and the research approach, which will “hybridize techniques of counter-cartography, visual storytelling and new media to explore and shape novel forms of spatial representation and reveal alternate realities in the borderlands,” to be compelling. Given the complexity of the landscape issues and length of the border, they suggest focusing the research geographically and thematically.
Grace Mitchell Tada, “Designing a Permanent Residence for Migrants, Ile-de-France, France”
This proposed project argues that it is “necessary for a landscape intervention to enter the dialogue and design of migrant residences.” The jury felt this project presents the opportunity to explore innovative ways of thinking about migrant centers that could have global applicability for other locales with migrant communities, refugees and sites of detainment. They found the proposal to be well developed and the applicant to be well prepared to undertake the project.
Ellen Plane, “Realigning for a Changing Reality: Designing a Transfer of Development Rights Program for Coastal Adaptation”
The jury commended the very important question this research project addresses, namely “the feasibility of a regional sea level rise TDR program for the San Francisco Bay Area” under which “owners of vulnerable coastal property could sell their property rights to developers, who them redeem credits to increase density in infill developments.” The jury found this to be an extremely topical issue that would be of interest to many stakeholders, and suggest involving regional experts in the research process and sharing the results in Bay Area forums. They praised the proposal for its clear conceptualization and articulation.