ASLA Fellow Sees a New Phoenix and More

Last weekend’s Arizona Republic magazine profiled Christine Ten Eyck, FASLA, in a piece entitled “A Natural Designer.” Along with detailing several of Ten Eyck’s projects around Arizona, the article also allows her to discuss her vision for a new Phoenix, one wrapped in “ribbons of green.” From the article:

“You’re not going to draw people into downtown Phoenix with more paving, more buildings and more cars,” she says. “People want to be in a place where nature is integrated.”

And so, on a rendering she made up, is her idealized version of downtown Phoenix. This dreamscape includes narrowed streets, the extra room from deleted lanes giving way to desert-friendly plantings. These “ribbons of green” Ten Eyck so dearly wants to see in the city could easily be watered with the condensate from all of the new buildings going up in the area.

“There are thousands of gallons of pure water coming out of those air-conditioning systems every day,” she says. “This isn’t rocket science, but any time you talk about harvesting water, people get worried about things like footings or their pavement getting bumpy.”

Also, in her vision, these pedestrian-friendly ribbons of green would connect city blocks with each other, and there would be plazas with water elements and public works of art to enjoy along the way. Temporary tree farms would take over the many vacant, dirt-covered lots that now dot the downtown landscape. In fact, Ten Eyck would even like to see a code that would prohibit those sad, empty plots of land.

Click through for the entire interesting piece.

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