The course submittals consist of five inter-related design exercises that loosely resemble the steps of a project within a critical practice setting. In general, this project approach approximates that of an open-ended design competition, whereby specific programming and outcomes may be less defined at the outset so as to catalyze a breadth of potential project futures. The overall course structure will provide the framework for various modes of design research and conceptualization. This will include specific assignments on analysis, programming and schematic design supported by readings and lectures. As the course examines one "project" throughout the semester, the work of the submittals are inter-related and cumulative and provide a basis for subsequent phases of work.



Similar to the onset of a project within professional practice, Submittal 01 is the rapid immersion into the project site conditions and context so as to identify and establish operational knowledge of and familiarity with the social, physical, political, and other influences on the project in both time and space. In the case of our studio project,  This phase of the project consists of the exploratory research necessary to quickly establish a working understanding of the project site, context and program in their past and present conditions.  In the professional office this work may occur during the proposal phase or concurrent to programming and programming analysis. 


Inquiry through a combination of traditional research, including data collection of maps, diagrams, photographs, reports, aerial photographs, technical reports, narrative accounts and other materials along with selected river-related scholarship. The work products will generate the identification of significant project opportunities and challenges. You will utilize critical mapping to uncover, examine and identify potential project trajectories. 



As explorers of the Anthropocene, you will investigate, document and contemplate the intersection of hydraulic technologies, biophysical processes, socio-political governance and the arts/cultural vernacular that create this territory.  You will seek immersion in the landscape and hydroscape of the river valley, with a  majority of our expedition focused on the southern portions of the Mississippi River from St. Louis southward.  We will seek the soil and water, the food and sounds, the stories- both known and hidden- which arise from the history of this landscape.  You will use a variety of traditional and non-traditional methods to record your exploration, including the development of a WaterLog.   

Final presentation will consist of all efforts from Part One and Two. 



Informed by scholarly and visceral explorations to-date, your work in this phase is a transition between problem seeking and problem solving. You will identify a proposed project, including a project area and the existing and anticipated spectrum of program development for the proposed project. The programmatic analysis will include precedent research into international examples of transformative projects as well as the findings of your own research.   



This phase is a key differentiator of the design professions as you will speculate on a range of conceptual future trajectories of landscape change. Utilizing the work to date, the vision planning phase is a quick, conceptual exercise that develops your divergent thinking skills so as to construct potential long-range narratives of the future. In doing so, you will continue to identify the primary location(s) and themes to be explored in your design proposal. 


A preferred project strategy (or strategies) developed in the conceptual vision planning phase is advanced into a design proposal located in one (or more) project areas. The design proposal will embody physical and conceptual project contexts, existing and proposed socio-ecological processes, and proposed systems, programs and moments at a range of scales.  A variety of investigative design representations-study models, sections, perspectives, etc-will be used to examine, test and refine the design proposal. 



Ulike the traditional final design review, the final presentation for this studio circles back to the agency of landscape architecture to provoke and elevate public awareness and discourse. Therefore this "submittal" will include refinement and summarization of the work completed in the previous five phases of work and the preparation of exhibition materials for public exhibition (location TBD). Utilizing representative materials from the collective work of the studio work to-date, you will work collaboratively to design the format and materials of the public exhibition.  A final studio book will be prepared, which will be used for a 2019 ASLA National Student Awards submittal.