• 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.
    • 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.
    • IRON HORSE PARK RENOVATION: Preserving Iron Horse Park & Arroyo Chico as a critical social open space in an urban context

      Livingston, Margaret; Sanabria, David J. (The University of Arizona., 2019)
      Cities are full of underutilized or neglected spaces with the potential to be re-purposed into a land use that can provide more valuable open space to urban dwellers. This action is sometimes referred to as “Infrastructure for All” Places such as brown-fields, parking lots, alleys, isolated underpasses and city washes are just some of them. Like many cities in United States, the city of Tucson is becoming more and more dense with a tendency to grow vertically, meaning that the common ground is shared; streets, sidewalks, plazas, parks, to name a few. Public spaces such as parks, give people the opportunity to interact every day, “the more they interact with each other, the more they accept each other. Encouraging people of different generations, race, and income levels to interact and share is a positive experience. Through this experience they learn that they can peacefully coexist with people who are different from themselves”. The purpose of this master's report will be to promote social interaction through the enhancement and reactivation of a city park, that has been neglected or forgotten and that may be threatened by new development and densification. “Densification is happening in Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., Boston— in most cities, actually. Even sprawled-out cities like Austin, Texas, are densifying, with tall residential towers in downtown” To preserve an existing urban park by encouraging human interaction brings many benefits to the city in terms of revitalization of places, encouraging people to walk through and connect with their community, and it can also help to build the local economy.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • Mission Revival: Reimagining The San Xavier Mission Del Bac’s Relationship With the Land and its Community

      Livingston, Margaret; Bonnet, Cody (The University of Arizona., 2019)
      Located in the Sonoran Desert ten miles southwest of Tucson, Arizona is Mission San Xavier Del Bac, a Franciscan mission and pilgrimage site that hosts hundreds of thousands of visitors annually. Founded by Spanish missionary Father Eusebio Kino in the late 17th century, the Mission has a storied history of intercultural trade and working relationships between the Native Tohono O’odham people and Spanish settlers. In the O’odham language, the mission is called “where the water runs in” in reference to the nearby Santa Cruz River. Historically, it ran year-round and was the catalyst for agricultural development in the area, but due to repeated human intervention is now primarily a dry bed. Today, the mission is an active parish that has achieved National Historic Landmark status and National Register designation. All of these factors culminate in a historic preservation project with intricate contextual layers that must be balanced and sensitively considered, which leads to critical questions throughout the process: What was the landscape like before and after various stages of human impact? Are there historic features that can be restored and preserved? If so, should they be? Ultimately, this project seeks to answer these questions through the lens of responsive site design both at the Mission and the surrounding Reservation landscape. The story of this land is a significant one, and this project seeks to accomplish how best to share it.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 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?
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • El Rio Preserve riparian rehabilitation & community recreation

      Stoicof, Alexandra (The University of Arizona., 2017)
      The Sonoran Desert is a unique biodiverse landscape of approximately 100,000 square miles in Southwestern United States. It is characterized by seasonal monsoon rains in both the summer and winter that sustain some 2,000 different plant species, making it a comparatively lush desert. Because of the Sonoran Desert’s geographic location and seasonal precipitation patterns, a variety of biomes can be found in the region, including tundra, coniferous forest, temperate deciduous forest, grassland, chaparral, desert, thornscrub, and tropical forest (Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, 2017). Within these biomes are corridors of riparian communities, which are areas of watercourses that create unique habitats. In the Southwest, many of these riparian watercourses are currently ephemeral and only fl ow temporarily throughout the year. These xeroriparian habitats (dry riparian) are largely and increasingly ephemeral because of human disturbances. Watercourses that once were perennial, such as the Santa Cruz River, now flow primarily only during the monsoon rains. Riparian communities are critical components in the network of biomes and habitats in the Sonoran Desert. They provide corridors for the movements of plants and animals, and sustain unique species in the desert that require more water. These communities are also beautiful, lush landscapes that are often enjoyed by humans for their oasis-like qualities; trails, camping and picnicking spots, and scenic points-of-view are often found along watercourses. The El Rio Preserve in Marana, Arizona is such a riparian community tucked along the banks of the Santa Cruz River. It is part of a chain of other regionally-significant habitats, and presents opportunities for both habitat and human recreation. Many species of plants and animals have found refuge at El Rio, including invasive species. Its origins as a former borrow pit, however, make it a disturbed xeroriparian landscape that could benefit from rehabilitation strategies. The following Master’s Report presents a process and design for El Rio. A majority of the work was done in collaboration with the Town of Marana. Public participation was a large component of the project, which informed many design decisions. A comprehensive literature and case review, and ongoing site assessments also contributed to the final design and rehabilitation strategies.
    • Bridging the Gap with Tucson's Urban Fissure

      Rapp, Ethan Yuri (The University of Arizona., 2016)
      As cities continue to develop, they can experience changes and subsequent decline in particular industries and land uses. In some cases, structures are abandoned and vacant lots remain as remnants of past uses. In central Tucson, Arizona, there is a fragment of land that separates two important districts. The proposed site, Tucson’s Urban Fissure, can be viewed as a landscape that is underutilized, barren, scorched, and is in need of a new identity. To the north of the Urban Fissure, sits an avenue of shops and restaurants that are well established, and to the south a newly built, thriving, living, urban hub. This fissure provides an opportunity to help fuse these districts. This area has the potential to link two thriving urban nodes: Fourth Avenue and Downtown Tucson. Currently this, Urban Fissure has a set of historic train tracks running along its side. This cultural inspiration along with Iron Horse Park can be looked at as a set of catalysts that can help spur a new sense of identity for this site. Through the creation of an urban park on Tucson’s Urban Fissure, the author will provide the city of Tucson with a valuable addition to its urban fabric. Through special attention to spatial scale, circulation, shelter and refuge areas, and spatio- temporal landscape patterns, the design will realize a new image for the cavity that currently sits in between central Tucson Arizona’s most heavily used districts (4th Avenue and Downtown), while also activating the underutilized land. This work is intended to illustrate to the city how the sense of movement can bridge the gap in needed linkages within the urban fabric of Tucson.
    • DEPOT PARK Reviving a Layered Landscape

      Marenfeld, Jonathan (The University of Arizona., 2016)
      As Tucson grows and its downtown is revitalized open spaces are quickly disappearing. The lack of open space downtown is partially due to the temporary closure of Viente de Agosto Park, the pending closure Jácome Plaza near the Main Library, and numerous development opportunities. Cities of all sizes seem to have a park that hosts events big and small and gives its residents a taste of nature in an urban environment. Many studies have shown that urban parks provide city residents social and psychological benefits while also having ecological and environmental services (Chiesura, p. 129). The goal of this project is to create an urban park for downtown Tucson that is capable of hosting events, festivals, or just lunch with a friend. The park will serve as a major stop along various established and planned routes. It will also be designed in a way that conserves water while using solar and wind technologies to reduce the need for already strained and increasingly expensive resources. To aid in the concepts and design GIS data, case reviews, and local regulations and ordinances will be explored.
    • MULTI[FUNCTIONAL] an approach to maximize use of remnant urban space

      Hatch, Andrew (The University of Arizona., 2016)
      The urbanization boom this country experienced in the twentieth century set the foundation for the urban fabric we live in today. The urban fabric functions as a result of the many and varied systems modern society has built in hopes of taming the forces of nature. An important example of one of these networks, though seldom seen and rarely celebrated, is the urban drainage system. Creeks and wetlands covered significant portions of coastal southern California until urbanization arrived in the early twentieth century. Typically small in scale but rich in biodiversity, these creeks came roaring to life following winter rains, draining the basin to the sea, all while feeding the wetlands that protected the coastal land. However, in an attempt to eliminate flooding risk and provide stable land on which to build, the majority of the coastal creeks were entombed in concrete, some above ground, and others below. What sounded like a good idea at the time has become a relic of the past. The experiment has demonstrated what happens when an ecological resource is misinterpreted as a liability in the urban fabric. That is, with research and observation, it is now becoming clear that these resources are assets to the communities and regions in their vicinities. Additionally, these potential resources have been walled off and shut away from the public, creating corridors that act as barriers within the urban fabric. A new attitude has emerged toward urban drainage infrastructure as the potential ecological and social benefits of green infrastructure become clearer in the public’s mind. Research along with many successful infrastructure projects from around the globe demonstrate the potential multiple benefits green infrastructure strategies can provide. These projects offer examples of strategies and elements that combine to create successful multi-functional spaces centered on urban infrastructure. A desire to synthesize these new strategies and traditional landscape architectural methods informed the development of a master plan for remnant urban space straddling a channelized coastal waterway in Oxnard, CA. This project demonstrates one approach to re-imagining coastal infrastructure as a multifunctional asset that provides habitat and recreational and social opportunities for the local community.
    • Creating a Multi-modal Transit Corridor: Eastern Province, Saudi Arabia

      Alammar, Mashal Hamed (The University of Arizona., 2015)
      The aim of this research is to address the lack of transportation and connectivity in the Eastern province of Saudi Arabia. The industrial field is the biggest investment for Saudi Arabia, and the number of commuting industrial employees has become an enormous burden on the infrastructure system. Jubail Industrial city is located in an expanding and dynamic area and contains experts, companies and colleges focusing on the industrial sector, but it is suffering from the tremendous number of mobility issues for commuters. More than 45,000 employees and students commute daily to Jubail City from Dammam, Qatif, and Ras-Al Khair, and they face many problems on their way such as traffic, accidents, and pollution. Thus, this project will address these issues, and provide a regional plan containing a multi-modal transportation corridor connected with urban hubs between Jubail and Dammam.