2020 DCP Research Symposium
Professor and Director of the School of Landscape Architecture and Planning at the University of Florida
Kristin Larsen, AICP, Ph.D. (Cornell), MAURP (Florida), BSBA (Florida) is Professor and Director of the School of Landscape Architecture and Planning at the University of Florida. Her expertise in housing policy, neighborhood planning, community engagement, social justice, and planning history has resulted in numerous publications including her biography of noted community architect Clarence S. Stein. She has secured over $1.032 million in internal and external grants awarded as either Principal or Co-Principal Investigator, including the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Urban Scholars Fellowship and a State of Florida Division of Historical Resources Grant. Dr. Larsen developed new courses in housing, historic preservation, and interdisciplinary studies in planning and landscape architecture. In her role as Chair of the Department of Urban and Regional Planning (URP), she spearheaded the development of the first fully online graduate degree in urban and regional planning in the U.S., shepherded the department through two accreditation reviews, both securing the maximum 7-year period with the most recent review including the online delivery of the URP graduate degree. As Director of the School of Landscape Architecture and Planning, she strengthened the collaborative research and teaching opportunities between landscape architecture and planning, established further integration between the two units via updated bylaws and shared research themes, and led the adoption of the School’s first strategic plan.
Shimberg Professor of Housing Studies at the University of Florida
Sherry Ahrentzen, PhD, is the Shimberg Professor of Housing Studies at the University of Florida. Her research focuses on housing and community design that fosters the physical, social, and economic health of households. She recently completed a three-year study examining impacts of green building on the resident health of low-income seniors in Phoenix. She has co-authored a book with Kim Steele on designing housing for adults with autism, titled At Home with Autism: Designing for the Spectrum. She currently co-leads a multidisciplinary team of faculty and graduate students examining how design and the planning of our built environment can advance the health of older adults in residential settings. This team is one of the inaugural cohorts of the AIA Consortium of Design and Health Research.
Assistant Professor of Interior Design at the College of Design, Construction and Planning
Shabboo Valipoor, Ph.D., EDAC, is an assistant professor of Interior Design at the College of Design, Construction and Planning. Her research interests and experience have been geared towards the impact of the built environment on human health and safety, with a specific focus on healthcare facilities and environments for ageing. Her current projects aim to: (1) improve the quality of care delivered to patients in acute care settings, (2) enhance safety and minimize the risk of injuries among hospitalized patients, and (3) foster independence and quality of life for older adults and people with movement disorders. Shabboo serves on the North America Chapter of the International Academy for Design and Health Leadership Committee. Since 2018, she has been co-leading the CODY project, working collaboratively with a multidisciplinary team of faculty and students from nine different departments and centers across the University of Florida.
M.E. Rinker, Sr. School of Construction Management
Dr. Ian Flood received his Ph.D. from the University of Manchester, UK, on serial and parallel computing techniques applied to the simulation of construction processes. He has held academic positions at the National University of Singapore, the University of Maryland, and he is currently Professor and Director of Research and Graduate Education in the Rinker School of Construction Management at the University of Florida. He has published over 200 refereed articles on the subjects of simulation modeling and intelligent computing applied to the AEC industry, he has received four best paper awards, and was the 2015 recipient of the ASCE (American Society of Civil Engineers) Computing in Civil Engineering Award. His research is currently concerned with the development of new methods of AI modeling with application to the AEC industry. He is currently chair of the Editorial Board for ASCE’s Journal of Computing in Civil Engineering, and Specialty Editor for Elsevier’s Journal of Advanced Engineering Informatics. Dr. Flood was previously Chair of the Executive Committee of TCCIT (the Technical Council on Computing and Information Technology) for ASCE.
Associate Dean of Research, College of Design, Construction and Planning
In the College of Design, Construction and Planning, Margaret Portillo is the Associate Dean for Research + Strategic Initiatives, supporting research-focused faculty, staff, and doctoral students across the schools, departments, centers, and programs in the college. She also helps support university-wide priorities, that now are focusing on the relevant and critical areas of social justice and Artificial Intelligence by encouraging meaningful engagement in research and scholarship occurring in these areas by faculty and students, work that is being highlighted in this year’s DCP research symposium.
Previously, she served as chair of the Department of Interior Design and worked closely with faculty to advance teaching, research while strengthening departmental engagement in the DCP doctoral program. Among faculty advisors statewide, she was honored to be recognized by the Florida Education Foundation with a William R. Jones Award for outstanding mentorship of African American McKnight doctoral fellowship students.
As a researcher, she leverages mixed methods, including narrative inquiry, to explore human-centered design. Recently, she was a co-recipient of an EDRA Certificate of Research Excellence award for a study of mixed-use learning zones on campuses, sponsored by an ASID Transform grant. This commendation recognized translational research significance and practice impact. Currently with colleagues, she is studying transformations reshaping the climate and space of university libraries as part of a national project. Through books, articles, and essays as well as academic and industry-invited presentations, her work has been shared nationally and internationally to advance the knowledge base on creativity, design innovation, and environmental color.
Portillo also is committed to national and international service contributions. For example, she led the research based CIDA standards development project in a three-year process that informed new interior design accreditation standards in 2017. In recognition of sustained contributions to the discipline, she was given a career award by CIDA. Other impact as Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Interior Design (2006-2015) led to a revisioning of the journal’s mission, reach and readership with Portillo and the JID Editorial Review Board appreciably elevating the journal’s rankings. For this contribution, she received an IDEC merit award and later became an IDEC Fellow. Recently, she was invited by the International Interior Design Association to serve as a juror for the MidAmerica IIDA competition, recognizing exceptional design work in interior design, and for the InWards IIDA competition, celebrating excellence in interior spaces and products created by interior designers, architects and industrial designers from select North Pacific states and Canadian provinces.
During her tenure at UF, Portillo has thoroughly enjoyed working with the talented and committed faculty, students, administrators and alumni of DCP as well as engaging successfully with industry and practice collaborators to advance the knowledge base through research and guide the next generation of design practitioners and academics.
Founding Principal, Dover, Kohl & Partners
Victor Dover, urban designer and co-author of Street Design: The Secret to Great Cities and Towns (Wiley, 2014), is an expert on how to redesign our neighborhoods and fix our streets, and, in the process, shape enduring cities that people really love. For 33 years, the Dover Kohl & Partners firm has been designing walkable, livable neighborhoods.
In 2000, the Dover-Kohl team created the City of Gainesville’s plan for University Heights. They also devised the plans for neighborhoods like I’On in Mount Pleasant, SC, and Glenwood Park in Atlanta, plus street redesigns for corridors including Park Avenue in Winter Park and Clematis Street in West Palm Beach. Their large-scale projects also include Plan El Paso, hailed as “America’s Best Smart Growth Plan” and Seven50, the fifty-year regional plan for the seven counties of Southeast Florida. Dover is best known for revitalization plans like the one that transformed the historic Southside neighborhoods in Chattanooga.
In recognition of this work, Dover and Kohl were awarded CNU Florida’s John Nolen Medal for contributions to urbanism.
Victor received his Bachelor of Architecture degree from Virginia Tech, and he is also an adjunct faculty member at the University of Miami School of Architecture, from which he received his Master’s degree. Victor is a CNU Fellow, and a Fellow of the American Institute of Certified Planners, is Vice President of the Parks Foundation of Miami-Dade, and is also a board member of the National Recreation & Parks Association. Victor is also a five-time Ironman triathlete and veteran marathoner, who uses hikes, rides and runs to size up the pedestrian-friendliness and cycle-worthiness of the many towns he visits each year. He regularly produces new short films under the banner “Town Planning Stuff Everyone Needs to Know,” available on the Dover-Kohl YouTube channel.
Dean, College of Design, Construction and Planning
Chimay Anumba is a Professor and Dean of the College of Design, Construction and Planning at the University of Florida. He is a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering, FREng (the United Kingdom’s National Academy of Engineering). He holds a Ph.D. in Civil Engineering from the University of Leeds, UK; a higher doctorate – D.Sc. (Doctor of Science) – from Loughborough University, UK; and an Honorary Doctorate (Dr.h.c.) from Delft University of Technology in The Netherlands. He has over 500 scientific publications, including 20 books and over 200 archival journal papers on aspects of construction engineering and informatics. His work has received over $150m in support from a variety of sources. He has also supervised 50 doctoral candidates to completion and mentored over 25 postdoctoral researchers. He is the recipient of the 2018 ASCE Computing in Civil Engineering Award and is a member of the US National Academy of Construction.
Architect, design scholar, artist, and Director of the Situated Computation + Design Lab
Vernelle A. A. Noel, Ph.D. is an architect, design scholar, artist, and Director of the Situated Computation + Design Lab. She investigates traditional and digital making practices, human-computer interaction, architecture, and their intersections with society and builds new expressions, tools, and methodologies for new understandings of design, technology, and society. Vernelle was the 2018-2020 NEXT Ventullet Fellow at Georgia Tech, holds a Ph.D. in Architecture (Design Computing) from the Pennsylvania State University, a Masters of Science from MIT, a B.Arch. from Howard University, and a Diploma in Civil Engineering from the John S. Donaldson Technical Institute in Trinidad & Tobago. She has practiced as an architect in the USA, India, and Trinidad & Tobago, and is a Keynote at ACADIA 2020.
The projects I will present are at the intersection of computational design, craft, STS studies, structures, and digital media studies. The first project develops an approach to computational design called Situated Computations. A Situated Computations approach grounds technology and the field of computational design in the social world by acknowledging the historical, cultural, and material contexts of designing and making. Situated Computations respond to each setting’s social and technological infrastructure and refuses to remain ignorant of economic and political structures that shape it. Through the development of a speculative CAD tool for designing, making, and learning through play, I reveal this approach which has implications for research, practice, and pedagogy. The second projects demonstrate the possibilities for new architectural tectonics and practices based on computational approaches to craft. In one, the dying, traditional craft of wire-bending is reconfigured for application at the architectural scale, and increased participation by missing publics. In the other, we acknowledge other cultures of making not driven by digital technology in the computational design and fabrication of an active bending structure. This structure was exhibited at the International Association for Shell and Spatial Structures (IASS) symposium in Barcelona, Spain in Oct. 2019.
Graduate Coordinator in the Department of Urban and Regional Planning
Laura Dedenbach is a Lecturer and Graduate Coordinator in the Department of Urban and Regional Planning at the University of Florida. Her teaching and research examine the relationship between community resilience, empowerment planning, and planning participation with a specific focus on land use, housing, gentrification, and narratives of place and culture. Dr. Dedenbach’s expertise in land use and neighborhood planning is informed by over 20 years of public and private sector experience as a planner and planning consultant. She is also a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners.
A Participatory Neighborhood Narrative (PNN) model combines principles of participatory, neighborhood, and narrative to create a consensus-based narrative highlighting the “neighborhood as a community asset,” along with supporting information and products. As university-based action researchers in planning, we coproduced and demonstrated the new approach with the Porters neighborhood, an historically African American neighborhood at risk of gentrification in Gainesville, Florida. We found that PNN directly empowered the neighborhood by building three types of capital – informational, social, and political – that led to more meaningful participation in city and university planning, and advancement towards neighborhood protection and resilience. We conclude with a brief discussion of the model’s transferability.
Department of Landscape Architecture , Florida Institute for Built Environment Resilience (FIBER)
Dr. Murtha holds a joint appointment with the College of Design, Construction and Planning and the Center for Latin American Studies. He is an anthropologist, landscape archaeologist and design educator with over twenty years of research studying settlement patterns and landscape history in the lowlands of Mexico, Guatemala, and Belize. He is a founding faculty member of the Florida Institute of Built Environment Resilience and his research investigates the coupled natural human systems dynamics of settlement and land use, relying on advanced geospatial tools. Dr. Murtha studied at the University of Central Florida, before completing his MA and Ph.D. in Anthropology from the Pennsylvania State University. For thirteen years, Dr. Murtha taught in the Stuckeman School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture, recently directing the Hamer Center for Community Design (2014 – 2017). Dr. Murtha has conducted sponsored interdisciplinary research in Mexico, Guatemala and Belize, as well as participating in research in Northern Europe and North America.
Assistant Professor in the Department of Urban and Regional Planning
Seungbeom Kang is an assistant professor in the Department of Urban and Regional Planning at the University of Florida. As an interdisciplinary social scientist, he is interested in affordable housing policies, housing instability and residential mobility, urban poverty, and social equity. His work has included research on household- and metropolitan-level predictors of housing instability and the role of affordable housing policies in alleviating housing instability. His research activity also includes analyzing residential trajectories of low-income individuals, developing a typology of housing instability, estimating the cumulative effects of housing instability on low-income individuals’ lives. Recently, he investigates the geography of unsubsidized privately-owned rental units, so-called naturally occurring affordable housing. He holds a Ph.D. in city and regional planning from Ohio State University.
Due to a severe shortage of affordable housing in the United States, insufficient funding for housing assistance, and the growing importance of preserving market-affordable housing, it becomes increasingly imperative for housing scholars and policymakers to capture neighborhood-level changes in unsubsidized privately-owned affordable rental housing, also widely called naturally occurring affordable housing (NOAH). In this study, we first propose a unique way to estimate the number of NOAH units at a neighborhood level using HUD’s Comprehensive Housing Affordability Strategy and other secondary datasets. Second, we examine neighborhood-level changes in NOAH units derived from the four largest core-based statistical areas in Florida from 2000 to 2016 with a particular emphasis on identifying relative growth in NOAH units in suburban areas. Results derived from multivariate census-tract-level regressions reveal that newly generated NOAH tends to be disproportionately located in suburban neighborhoods, even though a significant portion of NOAH units are still located in urban neighborhoods. The proposed approach to estimating NOAH changes can help local municipalities identify the geographical need for affordable housing preservation and align resources with the spatial dispersal of NOAH within a metropolitan area.
Associate Professor in Rinker School
Dr. Jason Von Meding is an Associate Professor in Rinker School and a founding faculty member of the Florida Institute for Built Environment Resilience (FIBER). Before moving to the U.S. he spent 6 years at the University of Newcastle, Australia, where he established the Disaster and Development Research Group. His PhD was conferred by the Queen’s University of Belfast in Northern Ireland, where he also spent 3 years on faculty. He researches disasters – particularly how injustice and inequality are the fundamental drivers of risk in society, and therefore shape disaster impacts. His talk will focus on a recent study of the implications of translating disaster terminology between dominant and “peripheral” languages; including the creation of a ‘separate’ language; power differentials; and linguistic imperialism.
Designer, educator, and researcher specializing in digital fabrication, parametric design, kinetic architecture, and interactive installations
Lee-Su Huang is a designer, educator, and researcher specializing in digital fabrication, parametric design, kinetic architecture, and interactive installations. He has a background working for digitally innovative practices such as LASSA Architects and Preston Scott Cohen Inc., specializing in complex geometry and fabrication. As co-founder of SHO Architecture, his work has been published at conferences such as ACADIA (Association for Computer Aided Design in Architecture), DCA (Design Communication Association), and ACSA (Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture). His interactive installations and artwork have been exhibited at venues such as the Milwaukee Museum of Art, The Ras Al Khaimah Fine Arts Festival in the United Arab Emirates, The Reed Gallery at University of Cincinnati, and the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University. Lee-Su is currently Lecturer at the University of Florida’s School of Architecture, teaching design studios and digital media / parametric modeling. He received a Bachelor of Architecture from Feng-Chia University in Taiwan and his Master in Architecture from Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design.
The featured video depicts an in-progress design research project titled, “Multi-Planar Robotic Tube Bending”, a workflow integrating the traditionally manual technique of tube bending with the precision of digital fabrication, computation, and the universally flexible nature of a 6-axis industrial robot with custom end-effector and external 2-axis positioner.
Assistant Professor at the University of Florida
Hassan Azad, an assistant professor at the University of Florida, is a scholar known for his research, teaching, and practices in building technology, and architectural and environmental acoustics. He holds an M.Sc. in low energy architecture from the University of Tehran and a Ph.D. in design, construction, and planning from the University of Florida. Prior to his current appointment at UF, he worked as a senior acoustical consultant in the San Francisco bay area for a year. Dr. Azad serves as a committee member for the technical committee on Architectural Acoustics of the Acoustical Society of America (ASA) and a reviewer for the ACSA annual conferences. He holds the membership of Acoustical Society of America, Audio Engineering Society, INCE-USA, IBPSA-USA, and Society of Building Science Educators.
Over the past couple of years, high-performance computing and machine learning has been successfully applied to several areas in acoustics including impulse response analysis, signal processing problems such as speech synthesis, source localization, and blind estimation of room acoustic parameters from reverberated speech, and structural vibration. It has also been applied to the acoustic of small outdoor environments. In this research we propose the use of high-performance computing powers and machine learning algorithms for acoustic evaluation of large-scale built environments which proposes a much more complex challenge. It requires the efforts to try different machine learning algorithms to find the best fit model to learn the mapping from a large class of shapes (building footprints) and noise source specifications (sound power, directionality pattern, and change in the average distance to the object in case of moving sources) to the resulting frequency-dependent acoustic pressure levels in time domain.
Rinker School Holland Professor and UF Term Professor
Dr. Ravi Shankar Srinivasan, Rinker School Holland Professor and UF Term Professor, holds M.S. degree in Civil Engineering from University of Florida; and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Architecture (Building Technology) from the University of Pennsylvania. He is a Certified Energy Manager, LEED Accredited Professional, and Green Globes Professional. He is the Director of UrbSys (Urban Building Energy, Sensing, Controls, Big Data Analysis, and Visualization) Lab; http://urbsys.org/. He has published one book as a lead author titled, “The Hierarchy of Energy in Architecture: Emergy Analysis,” Routledge and co-edited a book titled, “Smart Cities: Foundations, Principles, and Applications,” John Wiley & Sons Inc. His research has been disseminated as high-quality technical articles: 31 journals, 5 book chapters, and 54 peer-reviewed conference proceedings that has gained over 1,700 citations and an h-index of 18. He also have two provisional patents in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. He has graduated five Ph.D. and six M.S. graduates. More information is available at https://built-ecologist.com/.
Assistant professor in the Department of Urban and Regional Planning at University of Florida
Dr. Emre Tepe is an assistant professor in the Department of Urban and Regional Planning at University of Florida. His primary expertise is in spatial econometrics and urban modeling. His current research interests focus on spatio-temporal modeling of urban development dynamics working with bigdata. He was awarded a Fulbright Doctoral Scholarship to study at the Ohio State University and also received Patricia Burgess Award for the Best Dissertation. Prior to beginning his position at University of Florida, he worked as an assistant professor at Gebze Technical University, Turkey. He teaches Quantitative Data Analysis for Planners, Urban Spatial Analysis, Urban Economy and Urban Planning Project courses in URP department.
Complex dynamics in land developments can be accurately replicated using land use change models. Such models provide vital information for urban planners and policy-makers. Controlling spatial and temporal dependencies in these models have been recognized as an important component in modeling in order to achieve reliable representations of actual land development dynamics. Also, increasing in availability of spatially-explicit data at the disaggregated levels offers new research opportunities for developing spatio-temporal models. Working with disaggregated data provides rich heterogenous information about land development, while rapidly increasing sample sizes. Controlling spatial dependencies and increased size of datasets require advanced methods to deal with the computational challenges. In this presentation, application potentials of new methodological approaches including Monte Carlo simulations-based regression models, Efficient Pseudo Maximum Likelihood and Artificial Neural Network for spatio-temporal modeling of land development dynamics will be discussed.
Assistant professor, M.E Rinker School of Construction Management
I joined the faculty of Rinker School of Construction Management in Fall 2019. I lead the Construction Automation and safety (CAS) research group, focusing on construction safety, visual data analytics, and the cognitive sciences to support the building of the next generation of safe and smart infrastructure. Specifically, my research focusses on: (1) studying and evaluating visual attention behavior of construction workers and its impact on their safety performance, (2) Augmenting worker Performance through development of AI solutions, and (3) Evaluating the health and safety impacts of automated and robotic machines in construction. The outcomes of the research have been published leading peer-reviewed journals and conference proceedings of my field.
The use of drones in construction has increased significantly, making the construction industry one of the fastest commercial adopters of drones. With the predicted increase in construction activity to address growing infrastructure needs, it is expected that collaborative interactions between human workers and co-drones in the construction industry will continue to increase rapidly. The use of flying robots in construction jobsites potentially raises new occupational safety and health issues that must be investigated to avoid putting construction workers at a risk. In this study, simulation techniques will be used to visualize future construction sites that include ubiquitous co-drones and to identify and evaluate strategies for minimizing risks to the health and safety of construction workers.
The goal of this study is to explore the health and safety implications of having construction crews work collaboratively with co-drones on construction jobsites. The specific objectives of the project are to: (1) identify and evaluate physical risks associated with the operation of drones in construction (2) evaluate the effects of drones on workers’ attentional allocation and physical balance control performance, and (3) evaluate the psychological impacts of workers working with co-drones.
After 16 years as a Cooperative Extension Agent within the UF/IFAS Program for Resource Efficient Communities, Hal joined the UF/DCP family in 2018 as a Lecturer in the Program in Sustainability and the Built Environment. His teaching, service, and research interests extend from building-to-community scales bridging interdisciplinary domains including: (1) fostering resilience and cultivating adaptive capacity across the natural-to-urban transect; (2) exploring complexity and regime shifts within linked social-ecological systems; (3) nurturing wellness in the built environment, especially within the emerging ancestral health and fractal physiology paradigms; (4) engendering social justice in community development form and function; and (5) integrating individual and institutional leadership, conservation behaviors, energy efficiency, and renewable energy as mitigation strategies for the interlinked global challenges of climate change and energy transition.
Conventional conceptions of human health prioritize homeostasis as a desired state of being. Likewise, the present principles of sustainability, green building, and smart cities prioritize efficiency in resource utilization and feedback-driven optimization in system performance. Yet, both our ancestral traditional ecological knowledge (TEK), as well as increasing evidence within western scientific methods, suggest that human, ecological, and urban systems are chaotic, unpredictable, and self-organize into complex, nonlinear, pulsing patterns by leveraging interdependencies and adapting to uncertainties. As the science and conceptualization of homeodynamics, systems ecology, and resilience become more widely understood and applied in the fields of human physiology and the planning, design, construction, and operations of our built environments, prior preferences in form and function may reveal their fragility and a new paradigm of “fractal fitness” may emerge. This lightning round provides a foundation for these new ways of thinking, showcases a sampling of research findings, and speculates on how they may inform future process and practice for healthcare and urban development professionals. Specific focus is placed on nonlinear analytical methods, such as multifractal detrended fluctuation analysis (MFDFA) and cross recurrence quantification analysis (CRQA), as applied to temporal and spatial variability in our bodies, buildings, and biomes.
Assistant Professor in Interior Design and researcher with the Florida Institute of Built Environment Resilience (FIBER)
Dr. Lisa Sundahl Platt is an Assistant Professor in Interior Design and researcher with the Florida Institute of Built Environment Resilience (FIBER). Her work focuses on using Artificial Intelligence and Human Factors for guiding the design of environments that moderate the spread of disease-causing pathogens. The purpose of her current research is to explore potentials that applied machine learning and complex modeling have in informing reliable “Prevention through Design” (PtD) strategies for environment of care planning. In addition to being a licensed Interior Designer, Dr. Platt has graduate degrees in Systems Science and Engineering and Psychology and has authored several publications on enhancing environmental and operational safety. She has collaborated for three decades with U.S. and international organizations for using practical innovation to improve resilience.
Conducting environmental scans of regional patient catchment area data is common in architectural programming for healthcare facilities. However, the evolving effects of both hospital and community-onset infections due to antibiotic resistant bacteria require the adoption of more accurate and adaptive methods for estimating the effects of “outside design basis” factors impact on environment of care design performance in moderating infectivity risks. This research presentation discusses how predictive Hospital Acquired Infection (HAI) risk and resilience scenario assessment can inform design strategies for infection resistant built assemblies in healthcare. It explains the use of the Resilience Inference System for Performance Safety (RISPS) framework (Provisional Patent US 62/972,480, USPTO, February 2020) which is a domain agnostic AI-based process model. RISPSTM serves as a decision support instrument by forecasting possible outcomes of combined infectivity risk mitigation capacity and infection prevention resilience capability in inpatient care delivery settings. It offers a platform for improved insight into the infection prevention adaptive capacity of design interventions for acute care environments where risk of HAI is prevalent. The impact of this research is that it could enhance the predictive ability of existing well-established frameworks of architectural programming and offer increased accuracy in resilience planning for safety-critical system environments.
Assistant Professor in the Department of Landscape Architecture at the University of Florida
Dr. Yi Luo is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Landscape Architecture at the University of Florida. She received her Bachelor of Architecture from Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Master of Landscape Architecture from Utah State University, and Ph.D. in Urban and Regional Science from Texas A&M University. Her research interest includes landscape performance evaluation, sustainability assessment, evaluation metrics and methods, stormwater management/green infrastructure, and therapeutic landscapes. She participated in the Landscape Architecture Foundation (LAF) Case Study Investigation (CSI) program in 2019 and received grants from the Resilient Florida Cities program 2019-2021.
Before pursuing her Ph.D. at Texas A&M University, Dr. Luo practiced architecture and landscape architecture and has been a licensed Professional Landscape Architect in the state of Utah since 2009.
Depot Park is a 32-acre urban park adjacent to downtown Gainesville, Florida. In an effort led by the Landscape Architecture Foundation, we worked with the Gainesville Community Redevelopment Agency and the City of Gainesville to measure the extent to which Depot Park has met its original goals through a study of landscape performance. Such goals include “increasing access to recreational space,” “improving quality of life and strengthening community bonds for Gainesville citizens,” “promoting downtown redevelopment and fostering the city’s economic vitality,” and “helping to create a pedestrian-friendly environment in downtown Gainesville and enhancing the interconnection and walkability of streets for neighbors.” We selected a series of measuring metrics such as user numbers, business growth rate, property value, new jobs, and perceived quality of life. Various methods/tools were used to quantify the performance benefits of Depot Park, including i-Tree, eBird, Space Syntax, and survey. Results show that in addition to creating wildlife habitats and improving air quality, Depot Park improves the connectivity of pedestrian networks within 1⁄2 mile of the park, enhances the racial interaction of the adjacent neighborhoods, and contributes to a higher rate of increase in property market values and faster business growth within 1⁄2 mile of the park.
Three faculty engaged in the critical study of social justice, sustainable building practices, preservation and placemaking discuss what they see as possibilities for raising awareness, strengthening understanding, and creating more equitable communities.
Hear from four faculty, engaged in AI research and technology-driven scholarship, about their current projects and how they see AI driving innovation in the built environment.
Assistant Professor in M.E. Rinker, Sr. School of Construction Management at the University of Florida
Dr. Aladdin Alwisy is an Assistant Professor in M.E. Rinker, Sr. School of Construction Management at the University of Florida. Prior to this, Dr. Alwisy worked as a post-doctoral fellow with the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC)–Industrial Research Chair (IRC) in the Industrialization of Building Construction at the University of Alberta for three years. He has a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering, and he received his Master’s and Ph.D. degrees with the specialization of Construction Engineering and Management from the University of Alberta.
Working and collaborating with different U.S. and Canadian modular construction companies under different positions as a project coordinator, a project manager, and most recently as the director of research & development at a general contracting company, Dr. Alwisy acquired hands-on experience in the industrialized construction.
My main research interests lie in the Digitization of the Multidisciplinary Design & Construction Processes of Industrialized Projects (Modular & Panelized Construction) in order to dynamically and interactively improve the performance metrics of buildings while seeking to reduce the overall lifecycle cost.
To achieve a true shift towards the industrialization of construction projects, we plan to develop innovative frameworks and paradigms that bridge the gap between the state-of-art and state-of-practice with regard to leading construction management techniques, specifically Industry 4.0 technologies. As such, my pursuit of the digitization of the design & construction processes is expected to continually promote the adaptation of new concepts by introducing automated and semi-automated tools that simplify the implementation process for construction practitioners.
Associate Professor in the Department of Interior Design at the University of Florida
Jason Meneely is an Associate Professor in the Department of Interior Design at the University of Florida. He joined the department in 2006 from Cornell University where he worked as a researcher in the Department of Design and Environmental Analysis. Meneely’s research examines strategies for maximizing creativity, human potential, and social engagement through the design of the built environment. He also examines values-driven approaches to technology that support human-centered design processes.
In 2019 Meneely received a national Award for Excellence from the Council of Interior Design Accreditation (CIDA) for developing innovative approaches that leveraged virtual-reality headsets to support inclusive design decisions for people with disabilities. He also received the 2012 Innovation in Education Award from CIDA and was recently honored with a UF Term Professorship (2018-2021). He and his collaborators have received a national Research Excellence Award from the Environmental Design Research Association (2018) and Best Presentation awards at the UB Tech (2013), and the Interior Design Educators Council (2004 and 2002) annual conferences. His research has been published in the Creativity Research Journal and the Journal of Interior Design.
The application of Virtual Reality to human-centered design issues
Design strategies for enhancing creative performance in individuals, teams, and organizations.
Using technology to support creative problem solving
Design thinking and pedagogy
Upper-Division Interior Design Studios (including education, corporate, retail, and hospitality markets).
Graduate Seminar in Creativity Research
Digital Design Communication Methods
Professor of Urban and Regional Planning and Director of International Center for Adaptation Planning and Design (iAdapt)
Dr. Zhong-Ren Peng is Professor of Urban and Regional Planning and Director of International Center for Adaptation Planning and Design (iAdapt). Over the last 25 years, Dr. Peng’s research takes a systematic approach and adopts advanced statistics, econometrics, geographic information systems (GIS) and recently machine learning methods to advance our understanding of the dynamic interactions of human behavior, the natural and built environment, and government policies; to enable planning and policy-making to adapt to changes and uncertainties in climate, technology and human behavior; and to support community resilience, equity, livability and economic prosperity. Dr. Peng has published over 150 peer-reviewed journal articles and a book, and delivered over 20 keynote speeches in international conferences.
In this presentation, Dr. Peng will address the following two questions: how government policies affects residents’ adaptation behavior in coastal areas in response to sea level rise and coastal disasters? And what are the disparities in responses to hurricanes and Covid-19 of different socio-demographic groups, particularly the socially disadvantaged neighborhoods?
Assistant Professor in the Department of Landscape Architecture at University of Florida
Alpa is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Landscape Architecture at University of Florida, Executive Director at the non-profit Critical Places, and Partner at her mission-based design practice, Alpa Nawre Design, both based in India. She is a recipient of the Council of Educators in Landscape Architecture Award for Excellence in Design Studio Teaching, the Dumbarton Oaks Mellon Fellowship in Urban Landscape Studies, and the Landscape Architecture Foundation’s Fellowship for Innovation and Leadership’s first cohort. She serves on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Architectural Education, the Alumni Council of Harvard Graduate School of Design and the Board of Directors of the Landscape Architecture Foundation.
(Research collaborated with Akshay Badwe)
For over a billion in India, the acute water crisis impacts daily life as much as the socio-spiritual meaning ascribed to water in Indian culture. In response, a rich vocabulary of water in contemporary landscape architecture built works in India has emerged over the past few decades. Water has shaped remediation of basalt quarries, been collected in temporal landscapes, and being harvested through contemporary step-wells for new housing, providing innovative solutions to critical issues facing developing countries such as minefield restoration, water scarcity, monsoonal flooding, and more. This study documents progressive manifestations and aspects of designed water in contemporary Indian landscape to expand disciplinary knowledge in the context of a developing country, while simultaneously identifying gaps for future design inquiries, and substantiate as well as clarify opportunities for the design fields to take leadership roles in the face of the country’s water woes.
While architects and landscape architects have shaped the multidisciplinary ground of water in the designed contemporary Indian landscape, no studies document the various understanding gained from these design explorations. This study describes fifteen landscape architecture projects categorized based on how water manifests in the projects through surveys and interviews with designers and clients. These projects can be organized in distinct categories such as those in which the aesthetics of water are embedded in functional aspects, water is managed on-site to meet sustainability benchmarks, water becomes the catalyst for restoring degraded ecologies, water-bodies are revitalized and restored, and lastly to, where water becomes the basis for critical consciousness and alternative culture.
The projects described in this study were chosen because they were built and had either won awards, been featured in the only magazine of landscape architecture in India, or had been recommended through an initial survey of designers. While many project-specific lessons can be observed from this study, several broad lessons can also be drawn, such as the fact that non-landscape architects deliver many of these projects that can be classified as landscape architecture projects, and there is a dearth of built projects at the regional scale. These lessons, among others, point to a greater need for landscape architecture professionals in countries such as India to engage with contemporary water issues and develop a landscape design culture with a more critical agency.