Metropolis – Global Cites of Tomorrow – Landscape Architects to the Rescue
What’s the future of landscape architecture design? Designing sustainable large cities with emphasis on outdoor spaces.
Neighborhoods of the future will be built in the fashion of a Metropolis. A Metropolis is a large city which is a significant economic, political and cultural center for a country or region and an important hub for regional or international connections, commerce and communications.
With this being said, studies have shown that people who can have access to nature and green urban spaces tend to lead healthier, happier more enjoyable lives. Developing cites that can eliminate the hustle and bustle of long driving commutes is more tantalizing to our expectations. More people are moving back into large cites to savor the defined streetscapes and utilize green spaces. Here are some facts about how green spaces can improve our mental health and function:
- Outdoor activities can help alleviate symptoms of Alzheimer’s, dementia, stress and depression as well as improve cognitive function in those recently diagnose with breast cancer.
- The nature experience helps restore the mind from the mental fatigue of work or studies, contributing to improved work performance and satisfaction.
- Green spaces provide the necessary places and opportunities for physical activities; exercise improves cognitive functions, learning and memory.
Another example of Metropolis cities was explained by Mayor of Denver Mike Hancock marking the new train that runs from Denver Union Station to Denver International Airport as the first step in the aerotropolis puzzle. Additional they plan to parcel out more the 9,000 acres of land surround the airport to appropriate spaces for specialization in tech, agriculture, aerospace and much more making Denver one of the elite groups that have a connection between their airport and central business districts.
Metropolis Magazine published it’s “What’s Next?” article highlighting a new direction for the next ten years of innovation
One year in the future: New Levees. Wendi Goldsmith writes: “In New Orleans, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is redesigning its approach to hard infrastructure, because we have treated that entire Mississippi River system and its delta wetland complex very poorly. It’s falling apart and not doing all of the work it did in centuries past to buffer wave impact, store sediment, and serve as a natural line of defense. I predict New Orleans will be the classic canary in the coal mine. The lessons learned (or not learned) there as we rebuild the storm surge barrier can and should be translated elsewhere.”
Five years in the future: City Sink. Denise Hoffman Brandt argues: “What I see happening in landscape architecture is a growing understanding of how projects for specific sites work at a macro scale as part of larger environmental systems. I’m working on a project called City Sink that tries to create a new embedded infrastructure for carbon storage within the existing physical and social land uses of the city. It uses fourteen different approaches. One, highway biosound barriers, would retrofit existing concrete barrier walls with a planted ‘drape’ that’s irrigated with highway runoff using solar power.”
Ten years in the future: Soft Coastal Engineering. Jan H. DeJager contends: “We’ll need to develop a range of approaches to combat rising sea levels, including something we call ‘soft coastal engineering.’ In Holland, we take sand from the deepest parts of the North Sea and put it in front of our coastline. So when you lower the water depths in front of the coast, even if the sea level rises and waves come in, the sandbar breaks the large waves into smaller ones. We also make cuts in the dunes to let seawater enter in safe ways. And perhaps most important, we’ve been giving back certain low-lying areas to the Rhine River, which means the river gets more room to store its overflow during high-water periods. I was in New Orleans in January 2006 and saw some of the devastation. I think certain areas there you should give back to the sea, and other areas, if you want them to stay there, you must protect.”
As change help motivate us to reinvent our world, Landscape Architects will take a leading role in fashioning our environment to stand up to the change.
Contact our Designscapes Team to see what type of innovative ideas we can provide for you.