Climate Adaptation

CLIMATE ADAPTATION

I want to punch climate change in the face. A blog about the interactions between the built environment, people, and nature.


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Architects propose various natural systems to combat sea level rise in the Upper Bay. More via MoMA

In the Shadows of the High Line - Jeremiah Moss via NYTimes.com

Delicious morning city planning read of the day. Moss, a culture critic in NYC, criticizes the High Line’s economic effects while mourning the loss of Chelsea’s gritty “charm.”

It’s a great piece, my favorite in weeks. Moss forgets three things. First, the real-estate boom was not just located in his precious little piece of the world. It burned like wildfire, scorching economies around the world. Second, did Moss hang out there before the High Line was built? I severely doubt it. He shows that this section of town was once called gasoline alley, due to all the auto repair shops and other mechanical industries. Why is Moss, or anyone for that matter, nostalgic for that? Third, and important to me as thinker of city infrastructure, what about the nearly 20 years of community outreach done by the city’s non-profits, architects, students, PhD researchers, city planners, artists, economists, and econ-dev folks (among countless others)? Neighbors, developers, and business owners wanted revitalization. They wanted a large, effective redevelopment project. And they got the High Line. Chelsea got what it wanted.

underpaidgenius:

Jeremiah Moss pans the Times Squarification of West Chelsea as the outgrowth of the High Line, and the loss of the neighborhood of working class residents and light industry.In his view it’s part of the quick march to Disneyland On The Hudson than Bloomberg and developers are interested in capitalizing on.

parks

Beautiful restoration occurring along the Bronx River by non-profits, young people, landscape architects, and city planners.

“I come here all the time,” he said. “It’s incredible, no?”

Yes, it is.

For years one of the most blighted, abused waterways in the country, the southern end of the Bronx River has been slowly coming back and with it the shoreline that meanders through the South Bronx. Next year, barring further delays, what looks to be an innovative work of green architecture, by the Brooklyn firm Kiss & Cathcart, is slated to open in Starlight Park, a green stretch upriver from Hunts Point Riverside. This summer at the mouth of the river another street-end pocket park, Hunts Point Landing, is opening between a Sanitation Department depot and a food processing plant.

The New York waterfront is changing perhaps more than any other part of the city. For centuries the interests of big money and industry shaped it. These days, notwithstanding dogged efforts by the Economic Development Corporation to kindle business along the waterfronts of Sunset Park in Brooklyn and on Staten Island, the city’s old industrial waterfront is in many places giving way to parks and luxury apartment towers where money still talks, like along the Hudson.

But compared with headline-making projects in Manhattan and Brooklyn, the unexpected renaissance under way along the south end of the Bronx River flies largely below the radar. Park by park a patchwork of green spaces has been taking shape, the consequence of decades of grinding, grass-roots, community-driven efforts. For the environmentalists, educators, politicians, architects and landscape designers involved, the idea has not just been to revitalize a befouled waterway and create new public spaces. It has been to invest Bronx residents, for generations alienated from the water, in the beauty and upkeep of their local river.

Watch the inspiring or have a read at the NYTimes: River of Hope in the Bronx

theatlantic:

Why Apple’s New Campus Is Bad for Urban America

If you care about cities, about walkable communities, about healing the crappy environment thrust upon us for the last four decades in the form of suburban sprawl, then get a refund on that new iPad 3. Take your iPhone back, too. Because its manufacturer is betting that the company is cool enough to get away with violating even the most basic tenets of smart growth and walkability in the sprawling, car-dependent design of its new headquarters.

Don’t let them collect on that bet.

While communities all up and down the Silicon Valley are trying to repair sprawl by replacing it with smart growth, Apple is actually taking a site that is now parking lots and low-rise boxes and making it worse for the community. Yes, it will be iconic, assuming you think a building shaped like a whitewall motorcycle tire is iconic, but it will reduce current street connectivity, seal off potential walking routes and essentially turn its back on its community. With a parking garage designed to hold over ten thousand cars, by the way.

Read more.

Nice look for the 3rd phase of the High Line! Can’t wait to go this summer…

fastcodesign:

A tantalizing spring weather treat: a first look at the incredible final phase of the High Line

The world’s first vertical forest is being built in Milan, Italy.

Did you know that Milan is one of the most polluted cities in Italy? Apparently urban sprawl and increased emissions are major causes for slumping air quality in the international fashion capital. So Italian architect Stefano Boeri has formulated an unusual plan to give the city back what it’s lacking: namely, some greenery.

Bosco Verticale is Italian for “Vertical Forest.” The project took inspiration from traditional Italian towers covered in ivy. Boeri has simply multiplied the amount of foliage to a dramatic degree, envisioning residential buildings that resemble tall boxy trees. Each apartment unit has a balcony attached, with a lush garden enveloping the structure. The two towers will provide roots for 900 trees, as well as plenty of shrubbery and other floral vegetation. Their footprint, when flattened, is equal to 10,000 square meters of forest. Bosco Verticale provides a plan to make reforestation possible within the confines of a developed city.

Source: Creator Project

A blimp terminates this shot. See it?Highline summer 2011Curvey hardwood benchSweet bench + solar powered call boxPretty flowers

I visited my friend in NYC last weekend. Here’s some pics from the Highline I & II. Update: Some of these look stretched due to tumblr’s new photo essay format. Sorry y’all. Tumblr’s still got some figuring out to figure out. 

I’ll be in NYC/Brooklyn this weekend! Any readers down for a meetup or drinks or something?? Perhaps walk the High Line? 

Speaking of the High Line, The Atlantic beautifully covers the creative process of building the park under hot-shot landscape architect, James Corner of UPenn. Shout out to friends Victor and Karen, who are new UPenn class of 2013!  

theatlantic:

The Creative Process Behind New York’s Iconic High Line

James Corner is one of the premiere theorists and practitioners of landscape architecture, a field that emphasizes the design of outdoor and public spaces to achieve specific environmental, socio-behavioral, and aesthetic outcomes. The principal designer at James Corner Field Operations, a New York-based architecture firm, Corner focuses on landscape urbanism, an amalgamation of a wide range of disciplines including landscape architecture, ecology, and urban design. In a conversation with associate editor Jared Keller, Corner discusses the creative process behind New York’s now-iconic elevated park, The High Line, whose second section opened in June.

With the High Line, we had this extraordinary artifact that in some ways was an ugly duckling, something with potential. At the turn of the century, it was derelict; the concrete and steel and tracks were obviously in disrepair, the rails rusted, the wood cracked. Most people at the time thought it should be torn down. But where some people saw dereliction, others saw inspiration. It was in the landscape running along those broken tracks. The photographs of Joel Sternfeld (fine-art color photography and publisher of Walking the High Line (2002), an anthology focusing on the railway) had a remarkable influence in allowing people to view this thing as something with potential rather than something to be skeptical of. Running for a mile and a half through the west side of Manhattan, there’s a remarkable dialogue between nature and industry—or rather, post-industry—suspended 30 feet in the air.

Photographs, schematics, landscape ecology, and more at The Atlantic

Cut funding for the park, and it will become a crime-ridden “failure” - a classic political move to watch out for.

suchisthecity:

WHY IS THE HIGH LINE SO CRIME-FREE?

Lots of attention has been given to New York’s High Line Park lately with the recent opening of its second phase.  Most are talking about how it could be an influence to other cities looking to re-use their old elevated railways (St. Louis has plans for a High Line-esque park, and possibly Philadelphia and Chicago too).  However, some think that the High Line is more of a “flash in the pan” trend that will prove to be a failure given the time.  Here’s an article discussing why the High Line, after 2 years of being open to the public, still works.  As well as how it’s remained crime-free.

Source: new urban network

(via suchisthecity-deactivated201303)