What is a Park – Landscape or Infrastructure – Archinect
What is a Park – Landscape or Infrastructure
Mar 15, 2011
by Nam Henderson
How can a park be designed to serve as infrastructure(s)? Thinking not in terms of metaphor alone. But rather a park as the architecture for numerous designed outcomes. Park as infrastructure, means park as platform not only designed object/scape. From a singular tool to multivalent toolkit. It is important in such discussion to think of the less immediate impact. Of social design, the design of relationships. Such a platform-as toolkit-may result from more efficient, and stack(ed) programming. Thus maximizing urban spaces, suburban spaces, available spaces, that are under-performing. In essence, we should think about the best ways to maximize our various infrastructural corridors: utility, transportation, waterways et al.
Another approach involves returning to and reusing brown-fields and other post-industrial sites. In recent years, especially on reclaimed land, one has witnessed the return of the urban park. Examples include New York’s High Line, Seattle’s Olympic Park, Chicago’s Millennium Park or the London 2012 Olympic Park. Generally these parks are part of a larger urban regeneration strategy. Which relies on large amounts of capital coming from public and/or private investment.
Companies making that scale of investment expect a benefit; either to their brand-image or through sales, and the city receives improvements – and parks – in exchange. Yet, there is a danger here. In terms of the question of value. What is the value of a park? Is it just a question of real estate value, or green leisure space?