Book #22


WALDHEIM Charles, CZERNIAK Julia, HUNG Ying-Yu, AQUINO Gerdo, Landscape Infrastructure. Case Studies by SWA, Birkhäuser, 2011.

Infrastructure, as we know it, no longer belongs in the exclusive realm of engineers and transportation planners. In the context of rapidly changing cities and towns, infrastructure is experiencing a paradigm shift where multiple-use programming and the integration of latent ecologies is a primary consideration. Defining contemporary infrastructure requires a multi-disciplinary team of landscape architects, engineers, architects and planners to fully realize the benefits to our cultural and natural systems.

This book examines the potential of landscape as infrastructure via essays by notable authors and supporting case studies by SWA landscape architects and urban designers, among them the technologically innovative roof domes for Renzo Piano’s California Academy of Science in San Francisco, the restoration of the Buffalo Bayou in Houston, and several master plans for ecological corridors in China and Korea. Other projects develop smart re-use concepts for railroad tracks that no longer serve their original purpose, such as Kyung-Chun railway in Seoul or Katy Trail in Dallas.

All case studies are described extensively with technical diagrams and plans for repositioning infrastructure as a viable medium for addressing issues of ecology, transit, urbanism, performance, and habitat.


Note #2

Quando si parla di aerogeneratori, il punto non è tanto adottare delle corrette tecniche di mitigazione, quanto realizzare veri e propri progetti architettonici e paesaggistici, in grado di palesare il valore estetico dei mulini. È infatti pressoché impossibile nascondere un parco eolico, perché per funzionare al meglio deve essere esposto il più possibile al vento. Se poi pensiamo all’altezza delle macchine di grande taglia, che attualmente superano i 100 metri, è chiaro che la loro visibilità sarà molto forte anche a grandi distanze. Quindi la soluzione migliore rimane il progetto architettonico e paesaggistico, inteso come insieme di saperi capaci di dare forma e creare un’estetica a nuovi contenuti che la storia ci propone.

Alessio Battistella, 2010: 78

In the realization of a wind turbine the point is not adopting proper mitigation techniques, but creating projects of architecture and landscape able to reveal the aesthetic value of the mills. It’s almost impossible to hide a eolic farm, because it works best when exposed to wind. Furthermore the visibility of big aerogenerators, which currently exceeds 100 meters, is very strong even at great distances. Therefore the best solution is the architectural and landscape designing, understood as a set of knowledge capable of giving form and creating aesthetics for new contents proposed by history.


BATTISTELLA Alessio, Trasformare il paesaggio. Energia eolica e nuova estetica del territorio, Milano, Edizioni Ambiente, 2010.

Book #20


RAINER Thomas, WEST Claudia, Planting in a Post-Wild World: Designing Plant Communities for Resilient Landscapes, Timber Press, 2015.

Over time, with industrialization and urban sprawl, we have driven nature out of our neighborhoods and cities. But we can invite it back by designing landscapes that look and function more like they do in the wild: robust, diverse, and visually harmonious. Planting in a Post-Wild World by Thomas Rainer and Claudia West is an inspiring call to action dedicated to the idea of a new nature—a hybrid of both the wild and the cultivated—that can flourish in our cities and suburbs. This is both a post-wild manifesto and practical guide that describes how to incorporate and layer plants into plant communities to create an environment that is reflective of natural systems and thrives within our built world.

Book #7


ANGELUCCI Filippo, La costruzione del paesaggio energetico, Milano, Franco Angeli, 2011.

In human habitat the construction of infrastructure for energy’s production and distribution has historically generated functional and morphological changes at different scales of the project, in natural and urban components. Environmental changes, in view of the transformed energy supply needs, today require a project management’s capability of technological. In this direction, an interdisciplinary group operating at the “G. d’Annunzio” University of Chieti-Pescara has started studies and research on design potentials in building a future energy landscape. The book summarizes the results obtained in the course of these joint scientific activities, highlighting the possible scenarios of technological and design innovation in the field of energy production, which outline answers able to guarantee the conservation and regeneration of natural resources, in compliance with the natural, socio-cultural and aesthetic perceptive variables of the landscape. Continue reading