A little 101 on Urban Design

As many of you know, my background, education that is, is landscape architecture. No that does not mean a profession that solely mows lawns, plants trees and picks out annual flowers for a garden. I often try to tell people the profession of 'landscape architecture' is the study and design of the horizontal. Architects work with structures, they work vertically, a landscape architect works across the land. They examine cities, neighborhoods and parks; make sure as a whole, a City is functioning. Landscape Architects often works alongside city officials to develop master plans which will help prepare a municipality for future development and growth. Cities need identity and Landscape Architects assist with developing these defining characteristics! They think about the larger picture that most cannot see.

Well with that little background, my husband and I, both designers, took a day trip up to Cincinnati to visit the neighborhood Over the Rhine. I had heard about the revitalizing efforts in this area and could not resist the urge to check out some of this awesome, talked about urban design. 5 years ago this area was rated the number one highest crime neighborhood in all America. Today that number has dropped to 24. Crime, prostitution and unemployment are still high but the hopes that this area will continue to improve are exponentially high. Hundreds of millions of dollars have flowed into the neighborhood introducing new residential units, office and retail space. Young people are moving back into the area and taking over the modern and eclectic lofts that compliment the upscale dining and bars.

All in all, I cannot wait to see what the future holds for this gem of a neighborhood. The architecture is stunning and unique, and the brick, row house structures of German decent just send me back in time. I daydreamed about having my flower studio in such a unique setting......ahhh....someday soon!

I encourage anyone who travels to Cincinnati to check out this neighborhood!

Till next time.....seek great design!