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    Susannah Drake at the Knowlton School

    By kaleyoverstreet
    Oct 5, '16 12:08 AM EST

    On September 21, Brooklyn-Based DLANDstudio principal Susannah Drake presented a lecture titled “Creating of the 21st Century Public Infrastructure: Beauty, Economics, Politics, Ecology” at the Knowlton School. Her lecture focused on New York City as a case study for how physical conditions of a landscape have the ability to shape economic, technological, and cultural forces, when designed in a smart and deliberate way.

    The natural landscape of New York City, even since its early years of development, has been transformed through the filling in of swamps, management of clean and dirty waterways, dredging rivers, and construction of various transportation systems. All of these, as a result, increased development and density of the city. These systems, as they each serve only a singular purpose, need to be addressed in a different way now that our world of modern issues must be solved with designs which respond to problems multifariously.

    Drake cited her award winning design for the Gowanus Canal Sponge Park as an example of how not only can active landscape can improve the overall environment of an area, but how one solution can address multiple problems of a site. Not only does this park treat contaminated water that flows into the Gowanus Canal, but the landscape design, over time, will improve the quality of the canal. Different strategies divert storm water for use in the public park, and the plants aid in helping draw biological toxins away from the water. These “floating remediation wetlands”, which are an unprecedented process, attract visitors and even rowing teams to explore the site.


    Gowanus Canal Sponge Park. Image via DLANDstudio​

    Drake ended the presentation with her own prediction on how landscape and urban design will affect the future: “Land is scarce and valuable, so the repurposing of the newly valued territory created by singularly functioning or defunct infrastructure presents the next frontier in urban design.”

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About this Blog

This blog will be a feeder for recent news, events and student work occurring at the Knowlton School at The Ohio State University. Posts will typically center around updates from the school's lecture series, exciting projects from recent student reviews and updates from other school events.

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  • Meredith Garda
    Meredith Garda Columbus, OH, US
  • onetwelveksa
  • Luke Dougal
  • kaleyoverstreet
  • vince.destefano

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