Student Work 

Programme Name: Master of Landscape Architecture (MLA)
Course Name: Terrain & Ecologies
Course Organiser: Anaïs Chanon
TutorLeonie Alexander, Anaïs Chanon, John DarbyshireMarla Gomes, Rebecca Heatlie, Annacaterina Piras, Norman Villeroux 

Committed to a future in which the multi-faceted benefits of trees provide significant environmental, social, and aesthetic benefits to our communities, Edinburgh has pledged to become a Million Tree City by 2030. DAY | NIGHT provides a framework to effectively leverage this city-wide initiative to equitably connect, re-wild, and augment habitats for human and more-than-human species alike, cultivating a community-implemented ‘mesh’ of interventions for 24/7 impact.

Catalyst parks combine visionary spatial and programmatic design strategies that engage visitors in the mutual benefits of a living green streetscape, activating communities to cultivate change locally for both tangible and intangible social and ecological benefits. Mobilized stewards are equipped with a comprehensive planting guide that examines a multitude of environmental, urban, and social factors. A microclimate map ensures appropriate interventions are successfully implemented. The cumulative effect of this is a landscape connected by its canopy and communities, (de)paving the way for a city of the future, connected by its greenspaces.

Mesh implementation.
Karlsen, Morrone, Sterling, Watts

Microclimate Composite.
Karlsen, Morrone, Sterling, Watts

Karlsen, Morrone, Sterling, Watts

A composite plan and section of the stargazing field articulates the proposed grain of the new forest in red against the existing field of mature trees in blue.

Two nighttime sections showing Costorphine Hill before (top) and after (bottom) the introduction of the nocturnal mesh.

The case study of Cramond Beach uses salt marshes, salt meadows, coastal shrubs and oak woodland landscapes to create a connection between the city and the sea for humans and wildlife. Edinburgh is a coastal city, and the tidal landscape has the potential to become rich in experiences for humans and a valuable habitat for non-human life. 

The easter slope of Little France Park as a resilient landscape in fifty year’s time.

Reclaiming Seafield decommissions the Seafield Waste Water Treatment facility to symbolically, programmatically, and spatially reconnect the communities of Lochend, Craigentinny and Restalrig to their coast—now artificially constructed for waste disposal—and, through mesh connectivity—the iconic greenspaces of Edinburgh.  

Here, programmatic and spatial design coincide for a cohesive proposal steeped in socio-ecologically symbiotic design that promotes community ownership of space and place. Volunteer-led propagation in repurposed sewage vats reforests the Firth of Forth seagrass meadows, of which 90% has been lost to date.  

The benefits of this are multi-faceted and mutually beneficial for humans and non-humans-alike. The seagrass meadows serve as a CO2 and other toxin sink, provide wave attenuation that mitigates rising sea levels, and supports commercial fishing industry in the Firth of Forth. Meanwhile, park neighbors are active participants in the reclamation of the coast through stewardship and outdoor learning activities, and critical in the implementation and achievement of Edinburgh’s city-wide goal of becoming a Million Tree canopy—here expanded to included key marine ecologies.