Urban Fold

How Design Professionals Can Effect Change on Capitol Hill

Congressman Earl Blumeanauer explains what landscape architects, architects, planners and engineers can do to bridge the gap between politics and more livable communities during ASLA's advocacy day.

At this year's American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) advocacy day, Congressman Earl Blumenauer, Democratic Representative from Oregon's 3rd District, focused on the central role of design professionals in bringing sustainable goals to the forefront of America. He said, "Landscape architects, architects, planners, and engineers, the 'four horsemen of the livability apocalypse,' must work together to create a more positive narrative on Capitol Hill. In an 'flat-out broken' political system 'disconnected from the realities of what people are demanding,' design professionals can explain to policymakers what communities actually want: more sustainable transportation infrastructure, more green infrastructure, and more livable environments."

And to the Congressman, this narrative must be couched in a more nuanced language of amenities and communities, rather than densities. "Talking about 'densifying neighborhoods' doesn't really cut it with policymakers. 'I don't want to be densified.' Instead, designers should talk about 'developing amenities' and 'restoring communities to their historic population size.'"

Blumeanauer gave several examples of how the design professions, "all people with visions for how communities can be better," can influence the federal government to have more sustainable and economic impacts. "As an example, green infrastructure systems can save the government lots of money. Just basic things like taking out lawns that need to be mowed in favor of native wildflower gardens cuts down expenses."

Full Story: The Power of the “Four Horsemen of the Livability Apocalypse”

Comments

Build Your Own Paper Block City

Urban Fold is an all-inclusive kit that allows anyone to build the city of their dreams with a few simple folds.
$24.95
building block set

NEW! Build the world you want to see

Irresistible block set for adults when placed on a coffee table or desk, and great fun for kids.
$25
T-shirt with map of Chicago

Show your city pride

Men's Ultrasoft CityFabric© tees. Six cities available.
$23.00

Wear your city with style!

100% silk scarves feature detailed city maps. Choose from five cities with red or blue trim.
$55.00