Updates from ASLA

Orff Awarded MacArthur Genius Grant


Orff 240Kate Orff, ASLA, is the first landscape architect to be awarded a MacArthur Genius Grant. Orff is a landscape architect envisioning new forms of public space that reveal and revive the hidden ecological systems underlying our built environments and encourage urban residents to become active stewards of their natural surroundings. Her research and design practice addresses the challenges posed by urbanization and climate change (such as biodiversity loss and rising sea levels) through in-depth collaborations with ecologists, engineers, educators, artists, and community members that aim to make our urban habitats more adaptive and resilient.

As founding principal of SCAPE, a landscape architecture and urban design studio, Orff's work ranges from large-scale coastal infrastructure initiatives to the design of city parks, as well as book-length publications, museum exhibitions, and self-guided podcast tours that invite city dwellers to explore the natural histories of their regions. For the Rebuild by Design competition launched by the Department of Housing and Urban Development in the wake of Superstorm Sandy, Orff and an interdisciplinary team of collaborators proposed a risk reduction and ecological revitalization concept for Staten Island's southern shore called Living Breakwaters. In contrast to hard infrastructure, such as flood walls, that simply displace rising water to nearby vulnerable areas, the project employs a necklace of breakwaters designed to support the growth of oyster reefs and other marine habitats and to defend against wave damage and coastal erosion. Integrated into the concept are on-shore marine education and recreation centers that will connect students and neighboring communities to the shallow water landscapes and oyster reef restoration efforts protected by the breakwaters. Construction of Living Breakwaters is scheduled to begin in late 2018.

Kate Orff received a B.A. (1993) from the University of Virginia and an M.L.A. (1997) from Harvard University. She is the author of Toward an Urban Ecology (2016) and co-editor of Gateway: Visions for an Urban National Park (2011). She is the founder of SCAPE and is an associate professor and director of the Urban Design Program in the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation at Columbia University. SCAPE has exhibited work at the Museum of Modern Art and will be an exhibitor at the 2018 Venice Architecture Biennale U.S Pavilion.

New Hire

Pond is proud to announce and welcome Brad Jones, ASLA, as senior project manager for the Transportation and Community Development division. 

Located at Pond’s headquarters, Jones, a registered landscape architect and Georgia Soil and Water Conservation Commission Level II certified design professional, brings 20 years of experience as a landscape architect and project manager with a vast talent in planning, design, site engineering, and construction observation, with a focus on parks, urban plazas, streetscapes, and greenway trails for public and private clients. 

Jones “designs with nature” by using subtle engineering to flow with the natural and historical context of the street, trail, or park, so it integrates seamlessly into the landscape. 

“After graduating from UGA with a bachelor of landscape architecture, Jones began using his talents for landscape design for clients throughout Georgia, with personal highlights including managing the riverfront improvement in Rome, Georgia, and the renovations in his hometown of Cedartown, Georgia. 

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