Learning from the Land,
in the City
Urban Walks Series
Why this project?
The purpose of this project is to start a dialogue about the need for more holistic ways of thinking about cities rooted in the wisdom of ecology and multiple ways of knowing. In an era of climate change, environmental devastation and urban sprawl, this project aims to reconnect people with the land they live on, to better understand how cities and ecosystems work together and the impacts that humans have on the environment. Through the simple, but powerful, acts of walking, listening, observing and sharing, it is hoped that people will gain a deeper sense of place, understanding and connection.
Four seasons, four elements, four walks
Following the cycle of the four seasons and structure of the four Classical elements, Learning from the Land, in the City was a series of urban field walks with invited speakers from the worlds of design, ecology, community development and more. Speakers shared diverse ways of knowing about the land, weaving a holistic picture of the urban environment and our relationship with it.
Using the Jane's Walk format of "walking conversations", each walk was structured around a guided walk with a predetermined route and stops where guest experts and community members were invited to share their wisdom in the field. Facilitated discussion along the way ensured participants had the chance to ask questions and participate in the process.
This walk happened on Saturday, April 27, 2019. Read more about the walk and guest speakers here.
Summer / Urban Forests and Habitats
This walk happened on Saturday August 19, 2019. Read more about the walk and guest speakers here.
Due to volunteer availability and other important community events like the Climate Strikes, the fall walk was postponed.
Winter / Energy and the Cosmic Whole
This walk happened on Feb 29 2020 at The Forks. More about the walk and the guest speakers coming soon.
"It is important to integrate a 'natural systems approach' in our thinking about infrastructure into the next century.
I don't think there is a future in which we can imagine real change happening without ground-up initiatives and without citizen involvement. Designing for climate change demands these new frameworks of participation."
- Kate Orff, Landscape Architect, SCAPE