The Hills Project was conducted by the University of Kentucky, Department of Landscape Architecture's Fifth Year Advanced Studio in partnership with the Northern Kentucky Area Planning Commission.
The purpose of the Hills Project was to generate ideas, guidelines, and recommendations for both the development and preservation of Northern Kentuckyís hillsides. The study specifically addressed the dilemma of whether hillsides should be used to maximize development opportunity, be left in a more natural vegetative state to serve ecological functions, or have a balance of both. An essential component was to involve stakeholders throughout the entire planning process.
The Hills Project was completed over the course of four months and included three public meetings at which stakeholder participation and survey activities were used to gather ideas and feedback. Throughout the course of the study, the stakeholders showed passionate interest, concern, and diversity of thought regarding the hillside dilemma.
Stakeholder input was crucial in the conceptualization of ideas that will influence a range of policy and physical approaches involving incentive/disincentive as well as regulatory and voluntary actions in the community and region.
The goals for the Hills Project included documenting and understanding the stakeholderís perceptions, particularly their visual preference about landscape issues and values.
Vue for Visualization
A key project component was the series of build-out scenarios on six sites identified by stakeholders across the landscape in urban to rural conditions. Each of the six sites had four site plans generated. Each plan was evaluated using the U.S. Green Building Councilís LEED for Neighborhood Development and a sprawl to smart growth evaluation framework originally published by Hasse (2004) in Landscape Journal. Finally, the stakeholders also evaluated how they liked or disliked the site design ideas across the 24 scenarios. This project component has already impacted how the community will be modifying the existing zoning and subdivision regulations.
In addition, several other project components were completed such as the green infrastructure system across multiple counties. This project component utilized least cost path analysis in GIS with stakeholder input during model construction. An outcome of this already has been a discussion on modifying the system for generating public funds to implement a green infrastructure plan in the coming years.
What is depicted in this submission is a series of brochures developed during the project. The brochures are intended to be widely distributed by the community partner to continue the project. In addition, a 100-page report was also authored by the project team, which documents the entire process as well as expands on recommendations. As part of the project submission to the community partner, all of the public participation materials were delivered so that the process materials can be used in the on-going community dialogue.
The project team has strived to build the awareness of the landscape architecture profession in the community by using analysis, planning, design in the stewardship of natural and built environments through this educational process. The Northern Kentucky landscape will change; however, the what, where, and how can be influenced by stakeholders. The Hills Project provides the basis on which stakeholders can build on informed solutions and continue a community wide dialogue into the future.
More About this Project
People who participates to this project:
Joseph Marwil, Jack McGlasson, Darren Ramler, Casey Counce, Brock MacKay, Greg Combs, Heidi White, Corey Wilson, Jenna Bockey, Marc Bond, Justin Cotton, Travis Edelen and Jeff Chase.
Faculty Advisor: Brian Lee
University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky
See the ASLA website: www.asla.org/awards/2008/studentawards/052.html
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