Eli Feldman

Here are some JPEG’s of the CAD design I’ve drawn up.  The questions I posted in my previous post still need to be answered, i.e. rail material and section cut materials.  I’ve priced out a couple different options to look at.

I didn’t clearly explain in my last post that this design eliminates the need for creating notches (over 2000), and instead puts notches into the section cuts, allowing everyone to slip their individual pieces onto the rails and making them almost disappear into the model.  I hope these JPEG’s illustrate this clearly.  This method would greatly minimize our work and emphasize the section cuts instead of the model base.

P.S. I’ve designed the wire hangers to go directly through the rail itself (drilled hole), eliminating any lateral torque.









Model Idea_sketch

CAD File to follow later, but hopefully this explains the concept clearly enough for now.  Questions include rail material type (i.e. steel, aluminum?), individual section cut material (basswood, balsa, chipboard?), and hanging materials?

Also let’s look at how to effectively use Chad’s idea of adding images of some type (drawings, photographs, narratives?…), to the sides of the model (perhaps hanging), that match up with each person’s designated mile?

One more consideration is how to deal with the many tributaries that flow into the L.A. River?  If people model the openings it will effect the way they hang on the rails… hmmm


I’ve lived, worked and gone to school in Pomona for almost a year now. Very slowly, it’s becoming HOME; the train whistle, the dry empty lots, a few massive walnut trees leftover from its ranching past.

Childhood was so different. Moss draped over towering pines, snow and slush and thunderous rain that came down hillsides in muddy torrents. Salamanders flashed and disappeared between the ferns.

But for almost a decade in between the fragrant clay soil of that past and the golden hills of this present, another set of senses was turned on and tuned in, in the heart of the concrete city, downtown Los Angeles.

And this is exactly the feeling and thought that struck me recently on a visit to downtown. As we topped a hill on the I-10 West, the city’s heart came into view and instantly I felt as though I was arriving home.


This was the central vein running through that evening’s event, “Place and Identity: A Poetry Slam” hosted by a group of student urban planners from USC. Held at The Last Bookstore, the place had extra significance for me as it stands directly across from my most recent apartment building. Unfamiliar people in a familiar place stood up on stage and spoke with passion about what made them who they are.

Rejecting stereotypes, rejecting definitions and neat stories summing themselves up, they spoke about their ancestors, the places they were born and the places they grew up, about the times they loved and the places they loved in.

When it was over, the room was exhausted, united, and finally energized. What brought us together was Los Angeles, in that time and that place, but also ideas and universally shared experiences – not our cultures or languages.

We walked out of that cathedral of books onto the night, and I looked up at my old building, my old apartment, saw myself, and understood that it was just a residual of me, still residing in downtown, like a bright light that the eye still sees after it’s been taken away.

And then we were gone, driving east to Pomona.

“The rhythm of aesthetic and intellectual change in any field is not linear but pendulous.” – Richard Weller, from Between hermeneutics and datascapes: a critical appreciation of emergent landscape design theory and praxis through the writings of James Corner

Consistent with the quote above, Landscape Architecture is increasingly involving itself with issues of infrastructure and urban space.  Walking the line between design and planning, James Corner has placed himself near the center of this axis, the Landscape Urbanism movement, which holds that landscape rather than architecture is the more appropriate lens through which to organize a healthy city.

Against this natural, cyclical backdrop, we can understand James Corner’s theoretical work and practice as an inevitable reaction against modernity’s practical severing of “landscape” from “the city”.  The whole world seems to be considering this question now, as the congregation of people into mega-metropolises is the one of the defining trajectories of the human race.

Corner’s design firm, Field Operations, has focused primarily on large, high-profile spaces, perhaps most notably the High Line project in New York.   All of the firm’s projects try to bridge the gap between the subjective poetry of interpretation and the facts of planning, completely in line with Corner’s writings and ideas on Landscape Hermeneutics.

In this vein, Field Operations is currently taking on the post-games (south-end portion) London Olympic Park.  The park (opening in late July of this year), attempts to create accessible public space while incorporating major existing structures and linking together areas with curved paths, reminiscent of many of their other projects.

Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park Plan

Corner, James. “Techniques.” Quaderns June-July. 2004: 104. Print

Corner, James. “Terra Fluxus” The Landscape Urbanism Reader. Ed. Charles     Waldheim. Princeton Architectural Press: New York, 2006. 22-32. Print.


Anne Price Design – Marsh Section

Sections, section-elevations, and everything in between, serve many purposes – from pure information delivery to more atmospheric compositions for presentation purposes.  I think the example above belongs to the latter category, and is more gestural in form.  Yet it does clearly convey the most important major elements: urban park, rolling marshland, habitat creation, access focal point.  If the designer’s intent was to give us a more tactile understanding of the space, I believe she was successful.

Just an interesting excerpt I read while doing research for the blog.  From the Essay “The Challenge of Landscape Urbanism”

If there is to be a ‘new urbanism’, it will not be based on the twin fantasies of order and omnipotence; it will be the staging of uncertainty; it will no longer be concerned with the arrangement of more or less permanent objects, but with the irrigation of territories with potential; it will no longer aim for stable configurations, but for the creation of enabling fields that accommodate processes that refuse to be crystallized into definitive form; it will no longer be about meticulous definition, the imposition of limits, but about expanding notions, denying boundaries, not about separation and identifying entities, but about discovering unnamable hybrids; it will no longer be obsessed with city, but with the manipulation of infrastructure for endless intensification and diversifications of psychological space.

– Rem Koolhass, from S, M, L, XL (1995)

A little preachy (although I guess you get to preach if you’re Koolhass), but still a really interesting point and challenge within the profession.  What do you think?

Peter Latz and Partners_ed

Image Source:  Syntax of Landscape, Udo Weilacher

Designer, Year Built:  Peter Latz and Partners, 1991

This project illuminates the history of the park’s location through the designer’s use of existing levels of information on-site, connecting present-day visitors with the past.

N55 City Farming Plant Modules_ed

Image Source:  (Re)Designing Nature, by Florian Matzner, Susanne Witzgall and Iris Meder

Designer, Year Built:  N55 (danish art group), 2003

Life and food are conspicuously inserted into an otherwise unfriendly place, emphasizing how plant-poor cities are – pedestrians are encouraged to participate and reflect by watering and harvesting at will.

Punta Pite, Estudio del Paisaje Teresa Moller & Asociados

Image Source:  Platforma Arquitectura, Chloe Brown

Designer, Year Built:  Estudio Del Paisaje Teresa Moller y Asociados, 2005

In form and material, these stairs simultaneously fit in with, and are in stark contrast to their setting; one cannot help but consider the landscape with a new, keener eye.