James Burnett
OJB Landscape Architecture, San Diego

Currently over half of the world’s population lives in urban areas and this number is expected to rise dramatically over the next 30 years. As the density increases, the need for well-designed open green space becomes critical in urban living. Nature and the connection to green and living landscapes are crucial to making these urban vertical cities and dense concrete environments more habitable and healthier.

It is no surprise that the most successful urban developments will incorporate green spaces around and throughout buildings. Public open spaces, such as parks, amenity decks and sky gardens, will also be important in the creation and redevelopment of downtown neighborhoods. Highly programmed parks are key to catalyzing urban districts and attracting working families that can find balance and satisfaction between work, play and leisure. Vertical cities are important and provide an urban solution to growth. Vertical gardens and landscapes can create a much-needed respite from the city while creating a community in the sky. Thoughtful landscape programming that is targeted to the users can provide rich, social benefits as well.

Various landscape architecture projects have helped revitalize many cities through the creation of open green spaces, both public and private. Landscape design of the urban environment can be one of the most important parts of a successful high-rise development, creating a healthy and livable neighborhood.