Airport Landscape: Ecological, Infrastructural, and Urban Implications of the Aerial Age

Airports have never been more central to the life in cities, yet they remain peripheral to many discussions in design and planning. In this seminar we will address this shortcoming by exploring and reading contemporary airports as both a form of urbanism and a landscape. By undertaking case studies of 1) the design of operating airports and 2) the design of parks on former airports and airfields, students will contribute to the preparation of an exhibition, conference and publication on airport landscape scheduled for 2013-14.
The course will be divided into two sections. In the first half of the semester themes and case studies will be determined and generated. We will explore the design, planning, development, decommissioning and \”afterlife\” of airport landscape, and how best practices of ecology can be applied to it. Topics include the flows of people, machines, energy, water and waste in airport environments, and their operations and management. In the second half of the semester students will present their case studies. Lectures will introduce the topics, and assigned readings exemplifying the current discourse on airports will accompany the course.
This advanced research seminar is open to all candidates in the GSD including landscape architecture, architecture, urban design, planning, as well as candidates in the Advanced Studies Programs. The course will be limited to 12 students.