Landscape Architecture

Posted June 11, 2015
  • QIZ (Quarry Improvement Zone), Boqian Xu

  • QIZ (Quarry Improvement Zone), Boqian Xu

  • Soil Canal, Lanmuzhi Yang & Sheng Cai

  • Big-Nature Ruralism, Nate Wooten

  • Humanize the Industrial, Siying Xu

  • Humanize the Industrial, Siying Xu

  • Friends of the Pipeline, Vero Ortega & Jerri Wei

  • BeeLine- From Destruction To Production, Wen Zhang

  • Nate Wooten previewing work with Planning Commission staff (photo You Wu)
  • Boqian Xu previewing work with Planning Commission staff (photo You Wu)
  • Siying Xu previewing work with Planning Commission staff (photo You Wu)

PennDesign at the Lehigh Valley Planning Commission

On May 14, the Lehigh Valley Planning Commission and PennDesign's Dept. of Landscape Architecture opened an exhibition of students’ design proposals for the Lehigh Valley. The Commission titled the exhibition “Re-Visioning Overlooked + Undervalued Assets in the Lehigh Valley: Freight, Greenways, Industry, Landfills, Quarries, and Waterways.”

The work was developed in the fall '14 "Producing Region" second-year design studio (LARP 601), which considered the problems and potential of industrial landscapes and how design might operate at different scales to shape the form and quality of growth in the region. In the early weeks of the studio, student Nate Wooten’s regional research identified the Lehigh Valley as a natural boundary to the sprawl of the New York metropolitan region, and a belt of industry, agriculture, quarries and nature that was quickly transforming.

The new director of the Lehigh Valley Planning Commission, Becky Bradley (a graduate of PennDesign's Dept. of City and Regional Planning), was so enthusiastic about the proposals the studio generated for the valley, she mounted and promoted an exhibition of projects by Ruyi Chen, Sheng Cai, Chen Hu, Siyang Jing, Vero Ortega, Jerri Wei, Nate Wooten, Boqian Xu, Siying Xu, Lanmuzhi Yang, Wen Zhang, Rui Zhao, developed with support from 601 critics Ellen Neises, Nick Pevzner, Kira Appelhans, and Daniel Pittman.

A large number of local leaders showed up for the opening. Students, faculty and valley leaders had some energetic discussion about Penn’s injection of new ideas for directing change and growth.