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Studies, plans, designs & proposals sometimes in collaborations as side stream environmental design

fragment of a drawing for Ontario Street and 59th Avenue north of the Fraser River, Vancouver from a side stream environmental design charette for public art on the 18th January, 2002.

fragment of a drawing for Ontario Street and 59th Avenue north of the Fraser River, Vancouver from a side stream environmental design charette for public art on the 18th January, 2002.

Environmental planning and design is about people and where we live — and in particular decisions about space, resources, technologies, practices and ethics AND how possible solutions to environmental problems and conflicts can be communicated (including through contemporary culture). Typically, environmental planning scholars, such as myself, combine university teaching and research with collaborative private practices and public service (extending to activism).

Ara - Rwal area of the south-eastern district of the Salt Range in the north-west of Pakistan's Punjab, 19 January 2004, photograph by Gordon Brent Ingram.

Ara - Rwal area of the south-eastern district of the Salt Range in the north-west of Pakistan's Punjab, 19 January 2004, photograph by Gordon Brent Ingram.

The studies, plans, designs, and proposals described here go back a quarter of a century. Central to my approach is the axiom that a plan or design can only be as effective as the extent and thoughtfulness of the field work.

A concept from the 2004 Chalet Corbeau project, Echenevex, Pay du Gex, France.

A concept from the 2004 Chalet Corbeau project, Echenevex, Pay du Gex, France.

Environmental planners and designers invariably work in teams. This studio, and the loose collaborative that is side stream environmental design, coalesced in 1998 (side-stream-environmental-design-original-1998-manifesto). Most of the original members of ‘side stream’ are now over-employed and only have time to work in collaborations on a project-by-project basis. And scores of other individuals have contributed to this studio of side stream on individual projects. Going into our second decade, those of us who interact around this studio on Vancouver Harbour are constructing a broader space for exchange of critical perspectives and design for communities, public spaces and contemporary art being transformed for social and environmental justice. This studio blog has been created to share and transmit ideas and images in order to foster badly needed debates on public space, lands, and art.

Municipality of Dubai heritage protection marker, Al Bastakaya district January 2004, photograph by Gordon Brent Ingram.

Municipality of Dubai heritage protection marker, Al Bastakaya district January 2004, photograph by Gordon Brent Ingram.

Much of our work in this studio has involved the following kinds of engagements and interventions:

* more socially inclusive land use planning and urban design linked to movements for social and environmental justice;

* planning and design studies combined with environmental assessment;

* recommendations for sustainability especially on the West Coast of North America and a wide range of developing countries in Asia, the Middle East, and Africa;

* reviews and criticism of site-based and environmentally oriented culture;

* development of innovative theoretical frameworks on the cusp of ecological and urban design and contemporary culture such as public art;

* photo-based documentation of sites and communities;

* designs, proposals, and interventions for particular sites and communities; and

* related course and curriculum development as well as other forms of education and capacity-building.

Tsawout Nation Belly-Rising-Up heritage site, Central Saanich, Vancouver Island, 24 April 2005, photograph by Gordon Brent Ingram.

Tsawout Nation Belly-Rising-Up heritage site, Central Saanich, Vancouver Island, 24 April 2005, photograph by Gordon Brent Ingram.

Our work remains grounded in the unresolved legacies, challenges and relatively favourable conditions for creation of more democratic and multicultural public space, that exist in the Vancouver metropolitan area, south-western British Columbia and other parts of the West Coast of Canada and the adjacent United States. The name of this studio blog, ‘designs for The Terminal City’, refers to design in the broader sense: as well as production of imagery that is inherently spatial, designs for The Terminal City is for better formulation of social and environmental agendas some of which are more utopian.

conceptual design for a traffic calmer, January 2002 proposal for Ontario Street, Vancouver, by side stream environmental design.

conceptual design for a traffic calmer, January 2002 proposal for Ontario Street, Vancouver, by side stream environmental design.

Some other collaborations are also described especially international teams that I have had the privilege of organizing and sometimes leading under the auspices of agencies and organizations including the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization, UNESCO, IUCN, The World Conservation Union, and Canada’s Canadian International Development Agency and the International Development Research Agency. As important as work with big organization has been for small, grassroots clients from First Nations to environmental organizations.

Vancouver AIDS Memorial, 23 October 2007, photography by Gordon Brent Ingram. A number of my discussions and essays on public art have mentioned the difficult history of the site selection, design and construction of this memorial.

Vancouver AIDS Memorial, 23 October 2007, photography by Gordon Brent Ingram. A number of my discussions and essays on public art have mentioned the difficult history of the site selection, design and construction of this memorial.

Other pages in this domain extend to Gordon Brent Ingram’s

1. curriculum vitae, http://www.gordonbrentingram.ca/

2. more conventional scholarship, http://www.gordonbrentingram.ca/scholarship ;

3. photographic documentation and related work in contemporary site-based and public art, http://www.gordonbrentingram.ca/photobased ; and

4. informal studio blog, http://www.gordonbrentingram.ca/theterminalcity .

Vancouver's Union Street @ Glen Street spontaneous art space, 30 December 2007 , photograph by Gordon Brent Ingram.

Vancouver's Union Street @ Glen Street spontaneous art space, 30 December 2007 , photograph by Gordon Brent Ingram.

Gordon Brent INGRAM BFA, PhD

321 Railway Street #108

Vancouver CANADA V6A 1A4

email:

studio[at symbol]gordonbrentingram.ca

gordon_brent_ingram1966[at symbol]yahoo.ca

Most of these studies and designs were possible from crucial support from The Canada Council for the Arts.