Tuesday, September 29

New Middles: Resiliency and Climate Adaptation
asked designer Iñaki Alday and landscape architect Kate Orff to reflect on how their practices are responding through landscape architecture and research to local and planetary climate crises. This conversation stems from the question: How is the Mississippi Watershed and the plains ecosystems and habitat impacted by a changing climate? The COVID-19 pandemic raises issues of how might middle cities and landscapes address global health challenges? What future-oriented ecological strategies will serve middle city landscapes and communities moving forward?

Iñaki Alday
Tulane University / aldayjover architecture and landscape, New Orleans

Kate Orff
SCAPE, New York, NY

Moderated by Iker Gil
2020–21 Curator, Exhibit Columbus

Iñaki Alday is, together with Margarita Jover, the founder of aldayjover architecture and landscape. Alday has been the Dean at Tulane School of Architecture since 2018, after his tenure as Chair of the Department of Architecture at the University of Virginia. Since 2016, Professor Alday has been the Co-Director of the Yamuna River Project.

Kate Orff, RLA, FASLA, is the Founding Principal of SCAPE. She is also Director of the Urban Design program and Co-Director of the Center for Resilient Cities and Landscapes at Columbia GSAPP. She focuses on retooling the practice of landscape architecture relative to climate change and creating spaces to foster social life.


Iñaki Alday on the Climate Crisis: The Planet is "At the Limit of Collapse". (2020, January). ArchDaily.

Iñaki Alday. (2020, March 9). We need a better way of dealing with water and its power. The Advocate.

Iñaki Alday and Pankaj Vir Gupta, Yamuna River Project (ACTAR, 2018)

Kate Orff, Toward an Urban Ecology: SCAPE / Landscape Architecture (The Monacelli Press, 2016)

Building Public Places for a Covid World. (2020, September 11). The New York Times.

Envisioning Our Future Coast

Content from Walton Family Foundation: Our Future Coast. (2020, August 5). The Washington Post.

Richard Misrach and Kate Orff, Petrochemical America (Aperture, 2012)

James Graham, Caitlin Blanchfield, Alissa Anderson, Jordan Carver, Jacob Moore, Climates: Architecture and the Planetary Imaginary (The Avery Review: Columbia Books on Architecture and the City), (Lars Muller, 2016)

Amitav Ghosh, The Great Derangement: Climate Change and the Unthinkable (Berlin Family Lectures) (University of Chicago Press, 2017)

Anna Lowenhaupt Tsing, The Mushroom at the End of the World, (Princeton University Press, 2015)

Donna J. Haraway, Staying with the Trouble: Making Kin in the Chthulucene (Duke University Press Books, 2016)

Thursday, October 1

What is Columbus’ past and future relationship with its own ecology and resiliency? Miller Prize recipients Belinda Tato and Jose Luis Vallejo of Ecosistema Urbano joined Heather Pope, City of Columbus Director of Redevelopment, landscape architects Rachel Kavathe and Randy Royer, and CORE project manager Jason Larrison in a dialogue that looks at Columbus’ historic relationship to its waterways and future ecological initiatives through the Riverfront Redevelopment Plan, and the introduction of pollinator parks to our community.

Belinda Tato and Jose Luis Vallejo
Ecosistema Urbano, Madrid and Miami FL

Rachel Kavathe
Loci Creative, Columbus IN

Heather Pope, Jason Larrison, and Randy Royer
Columbus Riverfront Project, Columbus IN

Moderated by Janice Shimizu
Associate Curator, Exhibit Columbus / Ball State University

Rachel Kavathe, AICP/ASLA, is an artist, landscape architect, and city planner. Her work focuses on site-specific art installations, place-based master planning and public space design. She founded Loci Creative in 2015 and relocated her art and design studio to Columbus in 2017. Rachel is an adjunct professor at Ball State University College of Architecture and Planning. She is a founding member of Columbus’s growing “Friends of Pollinator Parks” movement.

Jason Larrison grew up in Columbus, Indiana, attended Ball State University, and is a registered architect. He now serves on the City-County Council of Indianapolis' District 12, and works as the Senior Project Manager and Business Development for CORE Planning Strategies. He spent 18 years as a public servant, working for the State of Indiana and the City of Indianapolis. In 2017, Jason made Indianapolis Business Journal’s “40 Under 40,” and he has received several awards, including the AIA Indiana Edward D. Pierre Award for Service to the Architectural Profession.

Heather Pope has served the City of Columbus as Director of Redevelopment since August 2012. She has been with the City of Columbus since 1996 and has held numerous positions within the Planning Department. Heather is active on numerous community boards and works with multiple city and county commissions. Heather is a lifelong resident of Bartholomew County.

Randy Royer is a landscape architect and senior principal with Hitchcock Design Group. Randy’s broad range of experience over a 25-year career includes designing museum grounds in Japan, estates in South Florida, and streetscapes, parks, and corporate campuses throughout the midwest. He provides active leadership for many of the projects within Hitchcock Design Group’s Indianapolis design studio and seeks design excellence through solutions that are both sustainable and maintainable. Randy calls Columbus, Indiana home. He is very active in the community, including serving as a board member for the Columbus Indiana Architectural Archives for over a decade.

Janice Shimizu, AIA, is an associate curator for Exhibit Columbus, partner at Shimizu + Coggeshall Architects, and an assistant professor at Ball State University. Through these opportunities, she has worked on an array of programs at varying scales and conditions. Janice is interested in the exploration of design processes, the construction of architecture, and their ability to have consequence in the world.

To establish a lasting and mutually beneficial relationship with our environment it is necessary to understand how places and communities will respond over time, both in critical times and in long-term ever-changing scenarios. For this purpose, we bring a flexible way of thinking about how design and creativity can help to cope with urban vulnerabilities and threats. Combining technical interventions with a social agenda, our work helps to build resilient communities around the principles of participation and environmental education.

-Ecosistema Urbano