• Transect the Loop

      Livingston, Margaret; Anthony, Paige (The University of Arizona., 2021)
      What interventions can improve connectivity within established residential neighborhoods and to the nearby regional recreational assets? This project looks at the challenge of connectivity within Tucson, specifically the residential core of the city. That is not to say that the goals of this effort could not be applied to other urban environments. The framework presented here could be used to develop site specific outcomes in any city. Focus of the literature and case reviews may shift, as might the inventory. Nevertheless, the need to address the safety and infrastructure to support alternative transportation and improve our urban ecology is everywhere.
    • Tucson al Fresco: A Toolkit for Decentralized Streetscape and Streatery Design

      Livingston, Margaret; Bejjani, Ramzy (The University of Arizona., 2021)
      The Covid-19 Pandemic forced a dramatic reimagination of public space. To reconcile the seemingly dueling requirements of public health and quotidian activities, people developed a diverse quiver of strategies to reconfigure the public realm, be it open air markets, pedestrianized neighborhood streets, a shift towards outdoor dining, etc. This report explores how one of these responses – streateries, an expansion of dining and drinking space into the public realm -- could be formally integrated into our post-pandemic urban fabric. Working with local municipalities, small businesses deployed streateries to great effect during the pandemic, building them quickly with only informal, on-hand materials. This ad hoc, often grassroots response was a global experiment in design deregulation. This report formalizes a process for decentralized and democratized streetscape design in order to institutionalize lighter, quicker, cheaper strategies and tools so that their practice and benefits can be more easily understood, more quickly deployed, and more equitably shared. The result is a toolkit for those wanting to start their own streatery or streatery program.
    • Wetlands and Bouncy Castles: A Juarez Nature Park Along the Us-Mexico Border

      Nuno-Whelan, Mario (The University of Arizona., 2020)
      What the heck do wetlands and bouncy castles have to do with each other? Usually, absolutely nothing. This project proposes that maybe they could. The focus here is the design of a constructed wetland park in the city of Juárez, Chihuahua, Mexico, that uses treated effluent to create wildlife habitat that once existed in the floodplain of a meandering Rio Bravo/Rio Grande prior to channelization. However, there are two broader design challenges that make it unique: 1) the site is adjacent the Juarez-El Paso border and directly across the river from an existing 372-acre Rio Bosque Wetlands Park in El Paso, constructed in the 90s and irrigated by the effluent of a wastewater treatment plant; and 2) the site is an undeveloped patch of agricultural land nearly surrounded by compact, single-family housing in an overlooked community. And this is where bouncy castles fit in. The goal is to integrate undeveloped wetland habitat with much-needed recreation space for a dense, urban neighborhood in a growing Mexican city. If you’ve ever been to a big public park in a Southwest city around graduation season or summer birthdays, you’ll know that shade ramadas and bbq grills get a lot of love. Families - and I mean families: grandmas, grandkids, aunts, neighbors, friends, every age group - go all out with food and lawn games...and sometimes, for big occasions...bouncy castles. Public parks are used similarly in Juárez. Families often visit parks in big groups. In order for this park to work, that kind of visitation needs to be designed for. The bouncy castle is a symbol. No, the park doesn’t come with bouncy castles and they will probably seldom be there. But they could be. And the design allows for it. It even welcomes it. It allows for people to use the park the way a lot of people actually use parks: in big groups, with food and family and games, with coolers and tables and camping chairs. The bouncy castle is a poofy pink stand-in for future graduation parties, family reunions, and Sunday family picnics in a park that also has wetlands and trails and unprogrammed nature.
    • Urban Voids: A Potential in Tucson's Wasted Spaces

      Palomo, Isaac (The University of Arizona., 2020)
      In the last decade, urban voids have emerged as a challenge for rapidly urbanizing cities. Especially in the city center where the early city settlement was situated, many urban and industrial functions have moved out leaving behind abandoned and under-utilized spaces. Underutilized and abandoned land in urban areas are often overlooked and neglected, ultimately rendering them as unattractive, dead spaces. Urbanization has led urban life to become dull due to the degrading of the environment and the devoid of space for sociocultural activities. As city populations continue growing, there is an increased pressure to provide open outdoor spaces for inhabitants. Urban Voids are a vital component in the context of social interaction and act as a meeting point to enable people to have direct contact with the society around them. The aim of this study is to understand the urban character of dead spaces within Tucson’s downtown district and identify a wasted space that has the potential to be leveraged into an active space to further enhance and strengthen the public realm.
    • Lizard Tales Loop: An Urban Greenway throug Flood Mitigation and Wildlife Education

      Johnstone, Rebecca (The University of Arizona., 2020)
      This project aims to look at the various ways that we can aid our washes in rehabilitation strategies to promote a healthier ecosystem for people and wildlife. Through research, a site was picked to be able to demonstrate ways of providing interactive learning on these rehabilitation strategies as well as to highlight lizards as one of the wildlife species that live in the washes. Techniques that were used to rehabilitate the washes include slowing, sinking, and spreading the water in vacant parcels that have more room using detention basins, terracing, and baffles to naturally meander the wash’s path.
    • A Walk on the Wild Side: Incorporating Ecological Design and Ethnobotany Interpretation in Morris K. Udall Park

      Hatch, Dionna (The University of Arizona., 2020)
      Parks have the potential to be educational, athletic, aesthetic, and artistic places. This work focuses on the linking of art, ecology, ethnobotany and socialization within a portion of a recreational park. The project utilizes the framework of Sonoran ecology and ethnobotany, while integrating the elements of Citizen Science programs and social environments within a new trail. The framework will be applied to a public recreational park, Morris K. Udall Regional Park, to develop a unique socially dynamic, educational and artistic space that inspires users about the natural environment. Methods include: literature review, site analysis, and design guidelines. Final outcomes will include an on-line resource for Citizen Science programs, master plan design for Udall Park, revegetation techniques, and a social ethnobotanical center for the east side of Tucson. Recommendations for the integration of Citizen Science programs and educational art installations are included throughout the design.
    • Songs of Chansons D' Haute Ville: Strategies for resilience within a rural heritage landscape

      Cottrell-Crawford, Penelope (The University of Arizona., 2020)
      Songs of Haute Ville is a culmination of my passions for heritage conservation, landscape architecture, and climate adaptation. The report will identify strategies to build physical and social resilience within a rural French heritage site called Haute Ville. The name means “high town” in French, as the site clings to a hill which overlooks the village of Puget-Ville in the valley below. The site is the original footprint of Puget-Ville, and it remains a wellspring of natural and cultural heritage resources for the town. Within the site's bounds are an 11th-century chapel, a 14th-century castle ruin, and footprints of the medieval village, all nestled within an dense pine-oak forest. In recent decades, the historic site has seen unprecedented damage from droughts and extreme weather impacting the hillside location. Major pathways have been rendered inaccessible due to landslides from eroded soils and rock-slides from destabilized masonry. This damage has impacted the site’s capacity to host visitors and events, which in turn has created ramifications for restoration and fundraising efforts. My Master’s Report will provide typologies for erosion mitigation and acoustic appreciation spaces; designs for re-vitalized entrance areas; and recommendations for native planting and alternative event programming. This project has ties to my personal heritage as well: my grandparents were live-in stewards of for almost four decades, until 2018. I have been fortunate to spend valuable time there throughout my life, exploring the lands, touching the stones, witnessing the hillsides change in wind and sun and rain. As such, has been a great pleasure to write this report, and to share it with my family, who are all intertwined with the site. Songs of Haute Ville aims to showcase strategies for the holistic protection of our shared global heritage. Heritage landscapes are much more than the built environment: they are comprised of the cultural talismans that exist in the ecologies and accumulated memories of the places we hold dear.
    • ABSOLUTE STREET, a new type of streetscape for future high-density urbanism

      Livingston, Margaret; An, Tai (The University of Arizona., 2019)
      During the past decades, conflicts between the natural ecosystems and the need for urban development has led to a loss of connection to green spaces in urban cores. The Park Avenue in New York represents a highly-developed central business district with limited connections to green space. Currently the pedestrian space in Park Avenue exists as only a 16-foot-wide sidewalk. With limited areas for green space, people generally move from one destination to another with a highly-straightforward purpose. The median in this area could represent a space associated with activities that would capture interest for those moving through the space. Urbanism often drives the downtown area into an antipedestrian place where structures and automobiles occupy 90% of the surface. People are active “in the cracks” of those components, where population and parking problems are often not addressed. This project focused on a modular design on Park Avenue to study different possibilities that attempt to highlight how green space and inhabitants coexist with the development of the city. Additionally, it presents a solution to replace a simple function area with one that is more multi-functional.
    • ASTORIA URBAN WATERFRONT PARK: RE-IMAGINING EXISTING ABANDONED PLAYGROUNDS IN QUEENS, NEW YORK CITY

      Livingston, Margaret; Nguyen, Truc (The University of Arizona., 2019)
      The City of New York is the most populated city in the United States and thus also in the state of New York. With the population increasing every day, lands become very precious. Buildings keep growing upward to create more living and working spaces for New Yorker. With the gift of nature, water, and land, a waterfront park has become one of the attractions for New Yorkers and tourists during the daytime. However, the city has been facing an issue of sea level rise over many years. Many studies show that sea level is rising at an accelerated rate, especially along the U.S. east coast. Because of this reason, New York City officials have required designers to consider this issue in their future designs. This study documented the design process of a Master Plan for the Astoria Urban Waterfront Park in Astoria neighborhood, Queens, New York City. The project outcomes minimized the effectiveness of sea level rise while providing an inhabitable space for the residents. Astoria Urban Waterfront Park is an opportunity to restore biodiversity, create habitat for wildlife, grant access to the water, and house outdoor activities. A review of relevant literature was conducted to develop a framework for the design approach. Case reviews of other urban and waterfront parks were conducted for project outcomes and programs. In-depth site analysis and inventory were captured the site conditions and contextual surrounding. Outcomes focus on two public open spaces connected by a waterfront corridor.
    • Parks are for People

      Livingston, Margaret; Moscato, Jennifer (The University of Arizona., 2019)
      Rio Rico, a planned community in southern Arizona, sits along the Santa Cruz River between the Santa Rita Mountains and Coronado National Forest. The intent of this project is to provide Rio Rico with proposed locations for a network of parks paying close attention to the people and natural and cultural resources of this unique community. The project aims to create parks that are easily and safely accessible to community members of all ages. The park amenities will highlight Rio Rico’s natural resources and community assets and promote public and ecological health. Combining geospatial data with environmental and cultural analysis along with input from community meetings and public surveys, a series of parks are proposed to promote community connections, health and recreation.
    • Southside Revival: A Research-based Design Approach to Revitalizing the 6th Avenue Corridor in South Tucson

      Livingston, Margaret; Kohen, Sol (The University of Arizona., 2019)
      South Tucson, Arizona faces a slew of challenges, poor public perception, and logistical issues having to do with poor funding of redevelopment. A need exists for small town revitalization plans, rooted in main street redesign along South Tucson’s 6th Avenue corridor. Investigation into community, business, and environmental make-up was conducted, along with analysis into how policy strategies, and design solutions can be implemented. Ultimately, city-wide master planning, with a main focus on streetscape improvement through high-profile public amenities, could foster a framework for private investment, and improved public image.
    • Art for Plants’ Sake: Encouraging Arid Plant Palettes Through Installation Art

      Livingston, Margaret; Lutheran, Matthew (The University of Arizona., 2019)
      The City of Tucson is currently experiencing growing pains as urban revitalization converts empty lots throughout Downtown Tucson into housing and retail. The increase in density results in a city with more pedestrian amenities, however it also reduces the amount of available urban green space. As the space for green amenities contract, the remaining landscape is converted into a commercially available plant palette, however this development provides no reference to Tucson’s environmental context. Tucson is located within the Sonoran Desert, a semi-arid region that receives 12” of annual rainfall. Limited water availability combined with extreme heat has created a unique ecosystem of diverse plant and animal life adapted to difficult conditions. The urban environment creates additional environmental constraints such as degraded soils, increased disturbance, and reduced light, which lead many urban projects to select plant material solely based on urban constraints. As urban development brings more residents into the urban core, the demand for urban parks will continue to increase. Small urban parks are a valuable refuge for residents and wildlife alike, providing relief from the urban environment. Urban parks provide important social spaces allowing the community to gather and landscape elements that reflect the community to strengthen its identity. Public art enhances the urban environment by illustrating the genus loci that bonds residents to the site and their community while engaging new users. To reflect the unique context of the Sonoran Desert, Tucson’s urban parks must educate the public about the benefits of working in concert with Tucson’s natural environment. A series of art installations will highlight the unique methods plants of the Sonoran Desert use to survive harsh desert conditions. Installation art will promote understanding of arid-adapted plants while accompanying planting displays will acclimatize the public to the aesthetics of desert landscapes. As the public becomes aware of the benefits of climate-appropriate plants they will demand that these communities are integrated into the urban landscape matrix to benefit the city and environment alike. Desert-adapted plants provide native habitat, and give residents greater connection to their city and highlighting the unique context of Tucson’s surroundings.
    • THE SOLAR VISTA: Integrating solar energy into our neighborhood parks

      Livingston, Margaret; Johnson, Aaron (The University of Arizona., 2019)
      Urban ecology emerged, in the 1970’s, as a response to the increasing reality of growing populations causing environmental and health problems of both urban and non-urban dwellers. As such, human settlements were acknowledged by ecologists as legitimate areas of ecological study. Almost 50 years later, great strides have been made to improve the ecology within our cities. This Masters Report looks to build upon past success by rethinking the implementation of sustainable practices into the urban fabric of a city. The report examines a contextually suburban park within Tucson, Arizona as an opportunity to better integrate and showcase the, increasingly popular and affordable, practice of harnessing solar energy. A review of literature and design projects was conducted to gain an understanding of ecological design principles, multi-functional solar sites, and educational features in public spaces. Site inventory and analysis revealed the existing condition of the site, as well as possible design limitations and opportunities. In response to the research and site assessment, design solutions were made to further progress the ecological practices within our public spaces.
    • CORONADO AIRPORT A Project in Flight

      Gamboa, Malerie (The University of Arizona., 2019)
      Located at the junction of different urban tracts in Albuquerque, New Mexico, the abandoned Coronado Airport was once a popular small aircraft airport. Operational from 1961 to 2001, the Coronado Airport was ultimately closed due to safety concerns, a fate shared by other small aircraft facilities around the U.S. Currently the 268 acre abandoned site contains only the two runways and several large concrete foundations where the airport buildings and hangars were once located. Although in a state of disrepair and left with only remnants of its former use, the site has the opportunity to become an effective and iconic space for the City of Albuquerque and surrounding communities. The Coronado Airport redevelopment project could also provide design and reuse concepts applicable to other equivalent sites within urban areas around the country. Through visual observations and site research this is a prime location to develop multi-purpose functions including a large natural park in an urban setting, alternative forms of active and passive recreation, while acting as a landmark for the city. The Coronado Airport redevelopment project explores the challenges of creating a destination for both locals and visitors through the reuse of an abandoned site while showcasing its transformation over time and acknowledging its former use. Moreover, the design incorporates elements of this diverse landscape context, its past use as an airport, the significant role of flight in the region, and new physical and metaphorical connections that can be enhanced and created.
    • ONE TREE AT A TIME: exploring equity in landscape architecture through incremental change

      Livingston, Margaret; Jon, Choi (The University of Arizona., 2019)
      The field of Landscape Architecture has been increasingly focused on issues surrounding equity, equitable development and equitable access to green space. Rightfully so, given that low income and minority communities statistically have inequitable access to green space when compared to their more affluent neighbors and suffer from increased exposure to the harmful effects of pollution and extreme weather (Gould & Lewis 2017, Byrne, Wolch & Zhang, 2009; McConnachie & Shackleton 2010). Strategies to address these issues range in scale and approach and are often associated with words like ‘green growth’, ‘sustainable development’, ’urban greening’ and ‘urban revitalization’. While this ambiguous language presents its own challenges, addressing equity in landscape architecture is not necessarily any clearer. Through a process of literature review, case studies, research and community engagement, this project explores issues of equity in the Oracle area neighborhoods in Tucson, Arizona. Final outcomes will include two neighborhood improvement project proposals informed by community engagement and the development of resources to aid communities seeking their own neighborhood improvements. Process and outcome reflection will provide thoughts on addressing equity in landscape architecture but given the uniqueness of each community and their circumstances, definitive solutions will not be provided. It is through continued questioning that the process of promoting equity within our communities will grow, evolve and improve.
    • Rillito River Restoration Southeast Branch: Green Infrastructure Strategies and App Technology in a Xeroriparian System

      Livingston, Margaret; Elbirt Carnaval, Diana (The University of Arizona., 2019)
      The Tucson basin experiences intermittent flooding events during its bimodal rain seasons. The development of the city’s infrastructure that has accompanied its increased urbanization is mostly dependent on grey infrastructure for storm water management that has been unsuccessful in slowing peak flows, recharging aquifers, and sustaining biogeochemical cycles that support habitat. A plan that focuses on an area of the south bank Rillito River, between N Craycroft Rd and N Swan Rd, will propose a series of green infrastructure strategies to manage ephemeral water flows. An investigation of hydrologically sensitive master plans in urban areas comparable to Tucson via literature review, ecological data, and the consideration of historical ecological and cultural history of the Tucson basin, will inform a design proposal that enhances biological diversity, supports economic development, enhances connectivity, and supports users’ well-being, within the urban context.
    • Tomorrow's Garden: Uniting Tradition Technology Community

      Kindler, Brad (The University of Arizona., 2019)
      Today challenges of climate change, population growth, biodiversity loss, and water scarcity, lead farmers to ask new questions about how to grow food in a changing environment. Additionally, innovative technology and public food preferences present challenges and opportunities for farmers to consider before planting. Honoring Tucson’s diverse community and unique history, this study proposes the design of Tomorrow’s Garden. This garden seeks to punctuate Mission Garden’s historic timeline with a demonstration of sustainable and innovative agricultural practices. Outcomes of this proposal include the design of a garden that has the capacity to adapt to changing climate, as well as build community through design process and project implementation.
    • BIODIVERSITY & INCLUSION: Leveraging community connections into shared stewardship and increased conservation capacity at Tumamoc Hill and beyond

      Livingston, Margaret; Casebeer, Nichole (The University of Arizona., 2019)
      The question is not if, but ever increasingly, how and where do urban areas and conservation intersect, and further how urban regions will shape the future of the planet’s biodiversity. As reported by the IUCN, in many parts of the world they [Urban Protected Areas] are the only places not completely dominated by human influence, and the only hope for the survival of many of the world’s plant and animal species, including humans themselves. The primary goal of protected areas is conservation, and protecting the region’s natural and cultural diversity, however traditional conservation is often focused on controlling human disturbance through restrictive measures - extremely limiting and/or eliminating human access and influence to sensitive areas. Increasingly, it is being recognized that urban areas require unique conservation approaches which acknowledge the extent to which human and natural systems are interconnected, for better and for worse. Rather than focusing on the worst and eliminating these connections, more contemporary approaches focus on embracing and celebrating this contact, and building community connections to sensitive natural areas through which urban residents can positively engage with the natural environment and play a more active role in conservation. This project focuses on Tumamoc Hill, and its need to think beyond Tumamoc’s traditional “island” boundaries and a preserve & protect approach to conservation and research. It explores how UPAs are critical spaces for cultivating and disseminating ecological knowledge and strategies through which human and natural communities - which have co-evolved for 1,000’s of years - can potentially co-exist in supportive and even mutually beneficial ways. The design begins to envision how Tumamoc can cultivate community connections and creative conservation practices that will support and protect Tumamoc’s rich heritage and support conservation within its borders and even beyond.
    • Malls of Memory: DEATH AND REBIRTH IN A SUBURBAN LANDSCAPE

      Livingston, Margaret; White, Cody (The University of Arizona., 2019)
      In today’s suburban landscape, the shopping center has become a significant destination for many. Vastly sized, it has become a cultural landmark within many suburban and urban neighborhoods. Not only a space for ‘purchasing’, the suburban shopping center has become a place to shop, a place to eat, a place to meet, a place to exercise – a social space. However, with the development and dominance of big box retail stores and online shopping on the rise, suburban shopping malls as we currently know them, are slowly disappearing. Suburban malls, which were once successful in serving their suburban communities, are on the decline. These malls are suffering financially as stores close and the community no longer has reason to attend these dying monoliths – it is with this catalyst that the mall eventually has no choice but to close. With little additional places for social engagement in a suburban community, the mall has become a contradictory example of what it was once intended to do. A place for social and civic engagement, as well as an economic triumph has now become an eye sore – a burden on the community it was once designed to serve. Citizens are forced to drive elsewhere – arguably to a regional mall, or a big box power center. What if a declining mall could be repurposed or redefined to enhance the community it stands within by reimagining the shopping mall? Are there possibilities for a reimagined shopping center – possibilities that would resist the single minded consumerist approach and instill a sense of place within the community it stands? This master’s report is aimed at determining a new typology for a failing approach to consumerism, architecture and landscape architecture – an approach that focuses on social engagement and meaningful connections with the surrounding community. There have been a number of advancements and changes within consumerism in the Western World - a cycling of architectural styles, technological innovation and social trends. By focusing on the ‘next shift’ in successful urban planning, this report opens up a new possibility of both consumerism and social engagement acting harmoniously. Can these ‘dead malls’ help define a ‘sense of place’ within the community they were originally part of? Rather than discarding (literally tearing down) what once was a flourishing space of both consumerism and social engagement, can they be reimagined to enhance the community beyond a reductive view of pure consumerism, and become a new landmark that will have the potential to enhance and engage the community, as well as contribute to the economic success of a city?