Landscape Architecture program hosts Breaking Urban Landscape Architecture symposium

The University of Delaware’s Bachelor of Science in Landscape Architecture (BSLA) program will host a Landscape Architecture Symposium titled “Breaking Urban” from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. on Friday, September 29 at the Delaware Center for Horticulture with a tour and reception to follow at the DuPont Environmental Education Center. The program was organized by students in the Landscape Architecture Symposium course who attended the Longwood Graduate Program symposium and the Pennsylvania-Delaware chapter meeting of the American Society of Landscape Architects to get ideas about how they wanted to organize a symposium of their own. UD’s Landscape Architecture program hosts Breaking Urban Landscape Architecture symposiumSue Barton, professor and extension specialist in the Department of Plant and Soil Sciences, said that attending the two different symposiums “gave students, especially attending the Longwood symposium first and relatively early in the process, an idea of what we were striving for.” Olivia Kirkpatrick, a senior majoring in landscape architecture with minors in horticulture and art, said that once the students settled on the Breaking Urban theme, focused on community engagement in urban design and landscape architecture, it was easier to pull together ideas for speakers. This year’s speakers include:
  • Jeff Flynn, director of development for the City of Wilmington, who will give a talk entitled “Wilmington as a Sustainable City”
  • Bryan Hanes, founding principal of Studio Bryan Hanes who is also a is a Registered Landscape Architect in Pennsylvania, Delaware, New York and Indiana and a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED Accredited) professional whose talk is titled “Who is this guy?”
  • Karen Washington, a community gardener and board member of the New York Botanical Gardens who has lived in New York City all her life, and has spent decades promoting urban farming as a way for all New Yorkers to gain access to fresh, locally grown food, will give a talk entitled “An Empty Chair at the Table of Food Justice”
  • Mark Lakeman, a national leader in the development of sustainable public places who has directed, facilitated, or inspired designs for more than three hundred new community-generated public places in Portland, Oregon alone over the last ten years, will give a talk on “Demos and Design = The Best Destiny Ever.”
There will also be a panel discussion moderated by Anna Wik, assistant professor in the Department of Plant and Soil Sciences and a registered landscape architect, focused on how and why some landscape architecture projects are successful and others are not. Kirkpatrick said that she is most looking forward to how the students respond to the symposium. “We’ve been planning it out and we kind of have an idea of what we want to hear from the speakers or what we’re anticipating but we don’t know exactly how it’s going to happen and exactly how the discussions are going to go so I’m interested to see how our anticipations compare to the actual day itself,” said Kirkpatrick. Barton added that she is proud of the students for organizing the symposium which is never an easy feat. The event is open to the public. Tickets cost $125 for individuals and $50 for students. There are also scholarship opportunities for students that attend. The event is sponsored by the Pennsylvania-Delaware chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects, Delaware section; UD Career Services Faculty/Staff Career Innovation Grant; Delaware Nursery and Landscape Association; Chanticleer Garden and Larry Weaner Landscape Associates. For more information, contact Barton at ( or (302) 831-1375 or visit the symposium website. Article by Adam Thomas