ONE TREE AT A TIME: exploring equity in landscape architecture through incremental change
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractThe 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.