Landscape Architect & Specifier News

JUL 2017

LASN is a photographically oriented, professional journal featuring topics of concern and state-of-the-art projects designed or influenced by registered Landscape Architects.

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July 2017 63 The Vertical Slice Garden sits at the base of two 41-story towers situated in Taichung's dense West District. Located in a place of daily interaction adjacent to the ground floor lobby and common spaces for the tower, the narrow sliver of landscape allocated to the garden mandates a design that mediates the scale and density of the city. The garden provides sensory immersion as a way of momentarily transporting the visitor away from the everyday experience of city life. All five senses are tantalized, whether through the tactility of the faceted stone modules that compose the garden's walls, the sound and spray of water cascading across the stones, or the subtle scent of the lush green panels of tropical rock-dwelling plants such as Asplenium, Nephrolepis, and Anthurium, which provide moments of visual refuge. These materials subtly reflect and refract natural light to provide relief from an otherwise dim setting exacerbated by northern exposure, pervasive shadow from high-rise buildings, and the city's perpetually gray, smog-laden sky. The Vertical Slice Garden walls set the scale of experience. As one moves closer, intricate geometries are revealed. The stone pattern was conceived as a massive canvas, where light is the medium and the stones act as pixels, seen as individual units up-close and as a singular composition from afar. Through the operations of flipping, rotating, aggregating, and modulating depth, five stone modules of three different sizes (10cm x 10cm, 10cm x 20cm, and 20cm x 20cm) were arranged in many combinations. The field conditions generated by these modules come in and out of focus depending on whether the stones are veiled by moving water or called into stark definition in their dry state. The water flows from a continuous weir at the top of the wall along the tall hedge planter to the collecting pool which spills over the pool wall to the continuous trench drain, circulating from filters and pumps housed within the wall/planter structure. In addition to blurring and highlighting the modular pattern of the stone walls, water falling over the faceted stones generates soothing white noise that provides momentary separation from the sounds of the city. The environmental conditions and human experience of the space are further improved by the carbon sequestration and oxygen production of the garden's plants, which provide relief from the city's relentless smog, and the cooling mists flowing off the moving water, which provide respite from the city's heat and humidity. The garden provides sensory immersion as a way of momentarily transporting the visitor away from the everyday experience of city life. Left: Landworks Studio designed a garden for a set of two 41-story towers in Taichung, Taiwan. The garden sits on a narrow slice of land between buildings and is adorned with a unique water wall featuring tropical rock dwelling plants. The vertical water feature draws on the aesthetics of pixilation, using the rock wall's individual stone units to create a large canvas, bringing the individual 'pixels' in and out of focus. PHOTO CREDIT: ERIC HUNG. Vertical Slice The Garden Landscape Architecture by Landworks Studio

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