Adaptive Water Urbanism Initiative

Welcome to the Adaptive Water Urbanism Initiative, an integrated program of teaching, research, and outreach at the Washington State University.

The initiative translates cutting-edge research into adaptive planning and design solutions to help communities transform sea level rise, drought, and the compounding effect of coastal, river, and inland flooding into environmentally and financially sustainable place-making opportunities.

The initiative is currently offering

1) Design Research Internship: an applied research position that investigates the human factors of ecodistrict-making through the nexus of water, food, and energy,

2) LA363 Adaptive Water Urbanism Studio: a design studio with six junior landscape architecture students,

3) LA499 Rainworks Challenge: an experiential course with eight students from architecture, interior design, civil, structural, and environmental engineering, environmental sciences, ecosystem sciences, and geospatial analysis, and

4) LA365 Grading and Stormwater Management: a technical course  that prepares students for the professional licensure exam and for addressing sea level rise, drought, and flooding through innovative grading techniques and storm water management solutions.

An interdisciplinary team of 14 students from LA363 and LA499 is currently working with San Francisco’s youth, citizens, experts, city staff, and the San Francisco’s first Green Benefit District (GBD) to identify public realm improvement opportunities for adapting the GBD to sea level rise, drought, and recurrent flooding. For project information, check out our San Francisco Green Benefit District page. To learn about our upcoming workshops in San Francisco, check out our January blog on the workshops.

In Fall 2016, the initiative offered LA470 Adaptive Water Urbanism Studio where six senior landscape architecture students worked with Seattle youth, experts, and city staff to help conceive potential sea level rise adaptation design strategies for South Park and Georgetown.  The two Seattle communities are located just south of the Elliott Bay along the Duwamish River – a channelized river with highly contaminated water and sediment with at least 12 feet of daily tidal fluctuation. For project information, check out the Seattle and videos pages.