Laurie D. Olin outlines the scope of his office’s work, which encompasses landscape design for universities, parks and commercial developments. He then explains the role of the landscape architect, arguing that the scope of his work is often misunderstood. Olin describes his interest in working with the “lost space” and “looseness” of contemporary cities. He documents the process of carving out a new civic space in Seattle.
Olin describes some recently completed projects. The first is re-envisioning the entrance to New York’s Central Park. His goal is to reclaim the site as a civic destination, re-invisioning Columbus Circle as an island. Olin documents the construction of a green roof for a new conference center in Salt Lake City. He discusses the idea of a building as landscape, stressing the role of community involvement in the realization of the project. Olin presents a master plan for Science Hill at Yale University. He discusses topics including hydrology and the deployment of specific plants species to clean water. He concludes with a discussion of the South Park Blocks at Portland University, which call for a new urban plaza.