At Perkins+Will, Cities+Sites is a group of Urban Designers + Landscape Architects coming together around a common goal: to make spaces people love. At the global scale, we take pride in our projects’ potential for positive change. At the human scale, we understand that the character and texture of the landscape profoundly influences quality of life. This combined perspective allows us to offer a well-rounded approach to place-making, from concept to completion.
As a group of forty landscape architects globally, we are intensive collaborators. To cross pollinate more often, we started a talent exchange program this year allowing staff to experience other offices and make lifelong connections. So as we grow, those relationships will be a big part of our ability to act as one global studio. Together we explore how resilience and ecology can be an integral part of all of our work. Perkins+Will’s Cities+Sites practice is deeply ingrained across a broad range of project types and scales, from intimate healing gardens to large-scale urban districts. Enriched by the firm’s design expertise across disciplines, our landscape architects and planners are idea generators, pushing the possibilities for each project. Our projects become influential models for urban spaces and landscapes. What matters most to our clients is the same passion that drives us: making better places.
As urban designers and landscape architects, we are regularly tasked with envisioning a new future for complex urban sites. Whether they are post-industrial sites, underperforming districts, or aging neighborhoods left behind in the wake of urban growth, our goal is to guide their transformation into vibrant, sustainable places. Beyond the trends, we believe these core principles are at the heart of any successful plan
Innovation Square is the redevelopment of the former AGH Hospital and surrounding area into a 12 block urban mixed-use research district that integrates new development into the existing urban fabric. As the central element of the proposed Greenway, 9th Street will be the active center of the District and the first infrastructure project focused on redefining the traditional public realm within the City.
9th Street is defined as a pedestrian friendly environment with limited vehicular access. The introduction of similar materials and patterns, from building edge to building edge defines the space. This definition indicates a change in the use, movement and intent of this space within the District. The pedestrian is prioritized. Vehicular movement is limited or restricted along 9th St and slowed on the supporting east-west 3rd Ave. With a curb-less approach, two rows of trees define the limits of vehicular access along 9th St. Within these widened tree zones, stormwater is captured and treated before releasing into a comprehensive water quality system. Within larger pedestrian spaces, landscape areas capture some stormwater as well as provide opportunities for reflection and small gatherings.
Built on a loop of reclaimed railroad tracks, the Atlanta BeltLine is a 22-mile multi-modal corridor consisting of transit, a linear greenway, and multi-use trails. This groundbreaking public infrastructure effort connects 45 historic neighborhoods around the city’s urban core, catalyzing economic development as it circles the city. Atlanta BeltLine, Inc. hired our team as the lead designer and manager for their Corridor Design, which provides a strategic framework to realize a functional, cohesive, and elegant urban design over time. The Corridor Design highlights the character of the diverse landscapes through which the Atlanta BeltLine travels, creating an episodic experience in harmony with the urban fabric of the city. At the same time, it reinforces continuity and identity for the entire project by establishing a family of infrastructure elements, like bridges, walls, and railings, as well as strategies to incorporate public art and signage. The Eastside Trail is the first finished segment of the Atlanta BeltLine, the nation’s most celebrated “smart growth” infrastructure project. This inaugural segment serves as both prototype and catalyst for the entire 22-mile BeltLine. At 2.2 miles, it represents only 10 percent of the entire project geographically, but contains half of the main program elements. Immediately embraced by the public, the trail sets the stage for urban living by providing a flexible venue that will evolve with the community over the long term.
Put simply the Bogacay Creek Masterplan was a parametrically derived water management system that unlocked the development potential of this city and enabled it to expand to meet the anticipated doubling of its population. Our vision for the Bogaçay Creek Master Plan was to create an environment that moved beyond resiliency to adapt and improve conditions in Antalya for present and future generations. By employing hard infrastructure and environmental landscape strategies, our design reduces flood risk by: (1) Making efficient use of land at risk of flooding by matching a mix of uses with levels of risk; (2) Working with the natural topography for cost-effective and sustainable communities; (3) Stacking vulnerable uses over robust uses to create active frontages and positive public realms at the street level; and (4) Providing new outdoor amenity spaces, areas of biodiversity, and new recreational uses in areas of higher flood risk. At its core, the project needed to address the flood risk and infrastructural requirements while remaining economical. Another central aspect of the project was the creation of a marina to activate the waterfront along Bogaçay Creek. The Bogaçay Creek Master Plan embodies our standards for innovative, responsible, and sustainable design. It creates a solution that not only protects what exists today, but facilitates the creation of an iconic architectural and landscape development that establishes Antalya as an ecotourism destination
Located just north of Istanbul, Turkey, the importance of the Yavuz Sultan Selim Bridge and its remarkable setting presents an extraordinary opportunity: a new public park anchoring the bridge on two continents with the power to connect people to Turkey’s rich history, to the natural landscape, and to each other. The team worked passionately to create a vision for the park that would be both respectful of Turkish history yet forward looking; a unique and memorable place with strong roots and a compelling future. The design concept integrates three key themes: Connecting Places, Performance Landscape and Enriched Experiences. Together these themes create a rich narrative and establish the framework for an architecturally integrated park experience that can only be found along the mouth of the Bosphorus Strait. The ultimate goal behind creating such a public park is to create an experience that encourages people to return again and again, through different seasons of the year and of life.
Project: Bosphorus Landing Park Competition
Location: Yavuz Sultan Selim Bridge; Istanbul, Turkey
Completion Date: January 2014
Architect: Perkins+Will, David Rogers, AIA / Leo Alvarez, FASLA / Luke Murphree
The Waterfront Botanical Garden Master Plan proposes an incredible transformation for the city of Louisville by creating a global icon on a former landfill. The design focuses around three key frameworks of Transformation, Discovery, and Health that create an overlay of unique experiences throughout the gardens. These frameworks begin to form stories that guide our design and appeal to different audiences. From children to researchers, from educators to chefs, from gardeners to artists, the garden offers a story that will resonate with people of all different backgrounds and interests. The garden strives to set precedents in sustainability via spaces like the proposed Education Pavilion that is being designed around the Living Building Challenge and the Water Filtration Garden that will clean gray water through a series of beautiful water gardens. With high ambition and expectation, Louisville’s Waterfront Botanical Gardens is being designed as a catalyst for the continued revitalization of Louisville.