Faculty: Patty Heyda and Carolyn Gaidis, Washington University in St. Louis
The Metropolitan Landscape is a term used to describe contemporary urban agglomerations like St. Louis and its surrounding areas. Metropolitan landscapes cannot be characterized by a single physical condition, but encompass a spectrum of diverse urbanisms that vary in the relationships of buildings to open space; in their scales, patterns, types, and uses; and in the ways they articulate and interact with each other and with linking infrastructures.
This course, required for all first-year MUD students, provides the foundational skills for students to engage the complexity of metropolitan landscapes while negotiating criteria of design quality, sustainability, human use patterns, and in-depth knowledge of systemic and inter-scalar relationships.
Working primarily in groups, students envision the transformation of three distinct urban areas from across the St. Louis metropolitan transect. Through initial analyses of the comparative sites, students develop an understanding of how and why these sites differ and what shapes them, while exploring approaches to the urbanistic project that test their understanding of the site's underlying structures, scales, relationships, and spatial and programmatic potentials.