In this Master of Landscape Architecture Lecture, landscape architect and educator Jill Desimini will present research shaping her forthcoming book, Cyclical City, a groundbreaking work offering a study of designing for urban vacancy worldwide.
As cities evolve and resources shift with time, spaces within those cities are often left fallow and abandoned. Cyclical City tells the stories behind these sites, from Philadelphia’s Liberty Lands park to Lisbon’s Green Plan, and it looks at the ways in which these narratives can be leveraged toward future engagement and use. Desimini posits a fundamental role for spatial design practice to transform abandoned urban landscapes through time. She argues for approaches that promote the specific affordances of the land itself (hydrology, vegetation, topography, geology, infrastructural capacity, occupation potential); the importance of cyclical change; and the particularities of the cultural, political, and physical context. These themes are explored in five cities—Philadelphia, Berlin, Lisbon, Amsterdam, and St. Louis—and across centuries, from periods of great upheaval to ones of relative stability and even economic growth.
This lecture is coordinated with the seminar Vacant/Wild/Ruined: Feral Urbanism, taught by senior lecturer Michael Allen, and is funded by the Master of Landscape Architecture program.
The event is free and will be delivered via Zoom. Register here>>
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