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Reading sites

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Title:
Reading sites a framework toward comprehensive site analysis teaching strategies
Creator:
Dalgamoni, Nermeen ( author )
Language:
English
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1 electronic file (151 pages). : ;

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Landscape architecture ( lcsh )
Building sites -- Planning ( lcsh )
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bibliography ( marcgt )
theses ( marcgt )
non-fiction ( marcgt )

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Review:
This thesis explores the importance of the comprehensive reading of sites during the site analysis phase of the design process. Landscape architects in particular benefit from critically analyzing sites; their understanding of the specific connections between landscape and social, cultural, environmental, and political structures is crucial to the success of their projects. This research also examines different methods used in analyzing sites over the past few decades; the authors of these methods have significant perspectives that influenced designers in their careers up to this point. Addressing the significance, the limitations, and the biases of each method has contributed in establishing the proposed teaching framework. This framework represents an integrative method that combines the experience-based methods of on-site exploration and the academic methods of the evaluation and the documentation of sites. This research also discusses different teaching methods and tools of discovery that will assist instructors and students during the reading of sites. This research also acknowledges the biases of instructors and students as one of the most critical issues students face during the site analysis phase which can affect their judgments about the site.
Thesis:
Thesis (M.L.A.)--University of Colorado Denver.
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Includes bibliographic references.
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Department of Landscape Architecture
Statement of Responsibility:
by Nermeen Dalgamoni.

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University of Colorado Denver
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All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
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902880213 ( OCLC )
ocn902880213

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READING SITES A FRAMEWORK TOWARD C OMPREHENSIVE SITE AN ALYSIS TEACHING STRATEGIES by NERMEEN DALGAMONI Bachelor of Architectural Engineering Al al Bayt University 2008 A thesis submitted to the Faculty of the Graduate School of the University of Colorado in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Landscape Architecture Landscape Architecture 2014

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ii 2014 NERMEEN DALGAMONI ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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iii This thesis for the Master of Landscape Architecture degree by Nermeen Dalgamoni has been approved for the Landscape Architecture Program by Lori Catalano Chair Ann Komara Jody Beck Joern Langhorst 2 1 July 2014

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iv Dalgamoni, Nermeen (MLA, Landscape Architecture ) Reading Sites: A Framework toward Comprehensive Site Analysis Teaching Strategies Thesis directed by Senior Instructor Lori Catalano ABSTRACT Th is thesis explore s the importance of the comprehensive reading of sites during the site analysis phase of the design process Landscape architects in particular benefit from critically analyzing sites; their understanding of the specific connections between landscape and social, cultural, environmental and political structures is crucial to the success of their projects. Th is research also examine s different methods used in analyzing sites over the past few decades; the authors of these method s ha ve significant perspectiv e s that influenced designers in their careers up to this point Addressing the significance the limitations and the biases of each method has contributed i n establishing the proposed teaching framework This framework represents an integrative method that combine s the experience based methods of on site exploration and the academic methods of the evaluation and the documentation of sit e s. Th is research also discus s es d ifferent teaching methods and tools of discovery that will assist instructors and students during the reading of sites. This research also acknowledges the biases of instructors and students as one of the most critical issues students face during the site analysis phase which can affect their judgments about the site. Key Words : Site, context, tools of discovery, underlying values, reading sites, site analysis and methods in site analysis. The form and content of this abstract are approved. I recommend its publication. Approved: Lori Catalano

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v ACKNOWLEDGEMENT First and foremost I would like to e xpress my sincere gratitude to Lori Catalano for her guidance, patience, and endless support throughout the course of this study. I also wish to thank all the members of my committee Ann Komara, Jody Beck and Joern Langhorst for their valuable participation and insights. I also wish to thank Leila Tolderlund and Ton y Mazzeo for their cooperation. Special t hanks to Mr. Don Brandes for his special support. I would like to thank my sponsor, Jordan University of Science and Technology and the faculty of the Collage of Architecture and Design; Professor Natheer N. Abu Obeid, Professor Hussain H. Alzoubi, and Professor Raed S. Al Tal for their endless help, insig hts and support. My final gratitude goes to my sisters; Neveen and Hanin, my brothers; Nawras, Ahmad a nd Mohammed, and to my best friends; Ruba Zuibi and Hagi r Bake r for their encouragement and support throughout my education at UCD

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vi DEDICATION I dedicate this thesis to my mother Khitam Al Rosan my husband Tareq Dalgamoni and our son Mohammed T hank you all for your endless support encouragement and understanding. I also dedicate this thesis to the memory of my father, Adnan Dalgamoni may his soul rest in peace.

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vii TABLE OF CONTENTS CHAPTER I IN TRODUCTION. .. 1 Background. .... 2 Objecti ve Statement. .. . 5 Scope of Research. .... 7 Res earch Limitations. .... 7 Th esis Organization. .... 8 II PROBLEM DEFINI TION AND MOTIVATION. .. 10 What is a S ite ? . ... ... ... . 12 Wha t is S ite Analysis?. .. ... 1 8 Why is it I mportant to A nalyze the S ite s in a C omprehensive M ann .. 2 4 Summa ry. ..... 3 2 III METHODS OF SITE ANAL YSIS 3 5 The Proponents of the Selected Methods. 3 6 The Technical Method, Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack. ........3 8 The Scientific Systematic Method, Ian McHarg. 4 The Context S ensitive Method, James A. LaGro. ... 6 2 The Experiential Method, Bernard Lassus and Richard Haag .............. ... 7 4 Summ a ry 81 IV THE TEACHING OF SITE ANALYSIS. 90

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viii Teaching Methods. .... 90 Tools of Discovery. 94 Understanding Biases. .. .. .. 102 Summ a ry. ... 104 V THE PROPOSED FRAMEWO RK FOR TEACHING SITE AN ALYSIS. .. 10 6 The Concep t of the Teaching Framework. .. .. 10 6 The Structure of th e Teaching Framework. 10 9 Student Learning Outcom es .. 1 1 3 Summ a ry. .... 1 1 4 VI CONCLUSION S AND DISCUSSION .. .. 1 16 Research Summary. 1 16 Discussion. 11 9 Future Research. .. 1 21 2 4 APPENDIX . . . . . . . . . . 1 2 9 . . . . . . . . . . 1 3 0 . . . . . . . . . . 1 3 9

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ix LIST OF TABLES Table 2 .1 Se lected development constraints.............................................. ................................ 8 3.2 Examples of physical, biological, and cultural attributes that may be mapped at the site scale .................. .................................................................................................... 6 3 3.3 Selected physical factors to consider in site planning and design. .............................. 6 7

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x LIST OF FIGURES Figure 2.1 The three distinct areas of a site based on Burns and Kahn classification. ............ ... .. 1 7 2.2 Spatial hierarchy regions, landscapes, sites. ................................................................ 1 9 2.3 Information from the site analysis is utilized by many professions engaged in the land development process. ............. ...................................................................................... 2 4 2.4 Constraints and opportunities may be on site or off site attributes that shape development suitability patterns and influence the spatial organization of program elements on the site. ........ ........................................................................................... 2 9 3. 5 A sketch of a neighborhood street by a resident of San Francisco. ........................... .. 5 3 3. 6 ...................................................... ............ 5 8 3. 7 Recommended m inimal s ocial c ost a lignment. ........... .............................. .. .. ... ......... 59 3. 8 Summary map of water and land features for part of the metropolitan area ......... .. ... 60 3. 9 Site planning and design process ....................................................................... .. ....... 6 2 3. 10 Site i nventory. ............................................................................................................ 6 5 3. 1 1 Site a nalysis .................................................................................................. ........... 6 5 3. 1 2 Overlay analysis using a linear combination approach. ............................................. 7 2 3. 1 3 The R ed D ot E xperiment. ............... .................................................................... .. ..... 7 9 4.1 4 Different diagramming scales to explain different site's qualities.............................9 5 4 .1 5 Mental map : P roblems of the Boston image............. . . .......................................... ..9 6 4 .1 6 GIS map for the recreational facilities at Gl obeville and Elyria Swansea 8 4 .1 7 Le Modular, Le Corbusier. ...................................................................................... 10 1

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1 CHAPTER I INTRODUCTION n studied in various approaches such as the technical, the social, the anthropological, the ecological, and the symbolic approach es A review of the related literature presented in chapter two shows that there are many significant methods that influence the research of the designers in different fields. However no single method gives a comprehensive image of a site. Each method has developed a discourse which is oriented toward highlighting one perspective of understanding a site and eliminates or underestimates the others. Furthermore, few studies have ever focused on the investigation of the means through whi ch various qualities of a site (such as the spatial formal, environmental, operational and deontological qualities ) are represented. The choice of means is fundamental to the choice of a site, to the subsequent modificati on s of that site, and to build on it. 1 Landscape a rchitecture ha s never been just about land manipulation; it touches history, culture, literature, ecology and more. Landscape a rchitecture is not just about aesthetic; it is more about affecting human perception and behaviors. The profession of l andscape architecture aims at creating enhanc ing maintain ing and protect ing places in order to be functional, aes thetically pleasing, meaningful, sustainable and meet human needs and expectations Landscape architecture occupies the middle ground between different disciplines and professions. Discussing site analysis from the perspective of landscape architect can benefit other disciplines engaged in the design process. 1 behalf of the Development of a Design Tool B ased on a C omparative C ase S tudy Eindhoven, The Nether lands, 1993).

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2 This research explores the i mportance of read ing sites in depth; each site has a unique set of historical, natural, and cultural values that determine how a site is T he Four Trace Concepts in Landscape Architecture a designer understands a site by overlaying different analytical layers and recognizing the visible and the invisible forces. 2 The careful analysis of sites and its context can lead to higher quality built environments. According to James LaGro, if the exis ting conditions of a site, or different sites are poorly understood, the development for these sites can result in negative environmental, social, and economic impacts 3 From an educational perspective, this thesis aims at establishing a framework that e xpand s the ability of students to explore, read and document sites in a comprehensive manner. The overarching goal of this study is to help students understand their own values and biases and to develop their own techniques and tools to enhance the learning of students and develop their critical thinking skills. Background Sites are not just the physical boundaries of a specific land; s ites are sets of environmental and social relationships that form human communities and influence human actions and behaviors. There are many definitions for the term site depending on the discipline and the context. One of the most well known definitions in the field of landscape architecture is Lynch and Hack and Gary Hack define that site as a composition "of many factors above, below, and on the ground but 2 Christopher Girot, T he Four Trace Concepts in Landscape Architecture ( New York : Princeton Architectural Press 1999 ). 3 James LaGro, Site Analysis A Contextual Approach to Sustainable Land Planning and Site Design Second edition (John Wiley and Sons, Inc. 2008).

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3 these factors are interrelated." 4 According to Lynch and Hack, a site is a crucial aspect of the environment ; i t has biological, social, and psychological impact that goes far beyond its more obvious influence on cost and technical function. 5 Site Matters Burns and Andrea Kahn discuss what constitutes a site in design. They classif y three distinguished areas of a site. The first one is the area of control which identifies the physical site within its property lines. The second area is the area of influence which comprises systems and forces that affect a site even if they do not take place within its boundaries. The third classified area, according to Burns and Kahn, is the area of effect which reflects the domains beyond the given site that are affected by design 6 In this context a site is understood at three different levels. In many situations, designers do not take th e time to explore sites in depth and they tend to analyze the m from a distance. Technology ( such as Geographic Information System ( GIS ) and Google Map s ), budget and time affect their ability to gain deep interaction with sites. 7 As technology grows, there is a possibility that site analysis will be just about information and data and overlook other impo rta nt aspects such as the values, the interpretation, the biases and oth er contextual forces that make a site a meaningful part of the whole. 4 Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack, Site Planning (Cambridge Massachusetts : MIT Press, 1983), 30. 5 Ibid 2. 6 Carol Burns and Andrea Kahn Site M atters: Design C oncepts, H istories, and S trategies (New York: Routledge, 2005) 7 Tim Waterman, The Fundamental s of Landscape Architecture (Fairchild Books, 2009).

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4 Landscape architects need to read sites in depth; their understanding of specific connections between landscape and social, cultural, environmental and political structures is crucial to the success of their projects Many professions are engaged in the s ite analysis process (architecture, landscape architecture urban planning, engineering, etc. ). L andscape architects for example, focus on the entire arrangement of a site The analysis generated by landscape architects includes information about the location of buildings, grading, stormwater management, construction, and planting. Similar ly architects need to cons ider the relation s between a building and its surrounding context to reflect a complete image of their designs. Social studies also ha ve a place in the site analysis phase; the understanding of demographics, income level and ethnicity play a significant rol e in the formation of a site. A comprehensive reading of a site can evolve the awareness and appreciation of a designer to include the s ocial and cultural considerations. Much information generated by the site analysis is provided by other disciplines. For instance, landscape architects must be able to understand information provided by natural, social and cultural sciences and to i nterpre t relevant findings from these disciplines. Information from the site analysis phase will be used and applied by many professions engaged in the land development process. Thus, it is very critical to understand what the term During th e past few decades, many architects, planners theorists, and landscape architects discussed the process of site analysis E ven more, they published many books explaining and promoting their ideas about sites. These ideas have influenced designers us e of different approaches in analyzing sites for a long time. However each method has

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5 its limitations and biases that may not always result in a comprehensive understanding of a site. After reviewing the existing methodologies of site analysis this thesis proposes a teaching framework that increases the ability of students to decide which method to use, how to use it and in what particular context. It is critical for students to understand what is missing in each method and the inherent biases in each of them On the other hand, exploring these methods help students navigate their own valu e system. The proposed framework also suggest s in some situations creating a hybrid method by overlay ing these methods to achieve a more comprehensive reading of a site. Objective Statement The design process in particular site analysis, involves many participants including architects, landscape architects, developers, etc The information involved in the site analysis process is getting more complicated T he need for new approaches and methods that address the cooperation between these various disciplines engaged in the site analysis phase is needed The decision making process requires a designer to consider the correlation among the components of a site H aving a comprehensive set of concepts and tools during the site analysis phase will lead to more suitable decision s Research Questions The new site analysis approach proposed in this research is an integrative approach that addresses a comprehensive perspective of the forces that form sites (natural, cultural, social etc. ) Therefore, this thesis will answer the following questions: 1 How a site is socially, culturally and environmentally constructed?

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6 2 Why is it important for a landscape architect to understand the underlying values of a site? 3 What are the limitations of the existing methodologies in site analysis? 4 How can students decide what tools of discovery to use and based on what criteria? 5 How can an instructor effectively teach site analysis in a comprehensive manner without imposing his/her values and help students understand their own values and meanings? The proposed framework in this research is based on existing methods and it expand s them within an organized structure that provides flexibility in applying t he appropriate approach based on the different goals of different project s Research Methodology The research presented in this paper examines different methods used in analyzing sites over the past few decades These methods are: t he Technical Method t he Scientific Systematic Method t he Context Sensitive Method, and t he Experiential Method The authors of these method s ha ve significa nt perspective s that influenced designers understanding and application s during the site analysis phase A descriptive research meth odology was used for this study to address the significance the limitations, and the biases of each method which contributed in establishing t he proposed teaching framework. Using the descriptive research methodology helped acquiring accurate, factual, and systematic information that provided a comprehensive perspective about each of these method s.

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7 Scope of Research This thesis proposes a teaching framework that represents an integrative approach that combines the experience based methods of on site exploration and the academic methods of evaluation and documentation of sites. The findings of this research state that On the other hand, the finding s of this research also address that each method is oriented toward highlighting one perspective of understanding a site and eliminates or underestimates the others. To gain a better understanding of a site and site analysis this research classifi ed these methods based on the approaches of their proponents in site analysis These methods are: t he Technical Method by Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack, t he Scientific Systematic Method by Ia n McHarg, t he Context Sensitive Method by James A. LaGro and t he Experiential Method by Bernard Lassus and Richard Haag. These methods are the most prevalent in the design profession and still influence different fields Research Limitations Th is research presents and discuses information, insights, and ideas from multi disciplinary fields Based on the time line of this thesis it was hard to engage all the methods that have discussed the notion Therefore, t his research discusses the most prevalent methods in the design profession The politics of sites is one of the topics that this research does not cover. Understanding the political forces and their impacts on forming community is fundamental. Discussing this topic and its wide dimensions requires extensive research and review of literature and legal documents in various discourses. Based on the limited

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8 time of this research and its core targets and goals this research acknowledges this issue in general ; but does not explore it in depth. This thesis also presents a framework based on existing methodologies of site analysis and is not proposing a new method. This thesis is more oriented toward the teaching of site analysis rather it s application in the professional practice. Another critical piece that needs additional research and discussion is the inherent individual bias es which is und erstood by individual cultures. T his thesis briefly acknowledges the biases of instructors and students as one of the most critical issues students face during the site analysis phase which can affect their judgments about a site. Teaching biases is a complicate d topic and in many situations it cannot be avoided. Thesis Organization This thesis is presented in six chapters. This chapter, Chapter One (Introduction), lays out background information about the existing methods in site analysis and addresses research questions and objectives. It also discusses the scope and the limitations of this research. Chapter Two, (Problem Definition and Motivation), defines the various notions of and s ite a This chapter also defines e goals of this research. I t also discusses the importance of the comprehensive reading of sites du ring site analysis phase of the design process. Chapter Three, (Methods of Site Analysis), examines the different methods that have taken place in analyzing sites during the past few decades. Methods discussed in this chapter are : t he Technical Method by K evin Lynch and Gary Hack, t he Scientific

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9 Systematic Method by Ian McHarg, t he Context Sensitive Method by James A. LaGro and t he Experiential Method by Bernard Lassus and Richard Haag. Chapter Four, (Teaching Site Analysis), discusses different teaching methods that help students in investigating sites. This chapter also briefly acknowledges the biases of instructors and students as one of th e most critical issues students face during the site analysis phase which can affect their judgments about the site. This chapter also discusses some ideas that can help instructors and students minimize the individual biases impacts during site analysis skills. Chapter Five, (The Proposed Framework for Teaching Site Analysis ), discusses the concept and the structure of the proposed framework. Th is proposed teaching framework will be the structure to develop a course for teaching site analysis to first year students in architecture, landscape architectu re and urban planning programs. This chapter also outlines teaching strategies and techniques alo ng with a syllabus and examples of assignments. Chapter Six, (Conclusion s and Discussion), discusses the findings presented in the preceded chapters and summarizes general concepts and guidelines for the proposed framework for teaching site analysis. This chapter also suggests future research that may extend the concept and implementation of the site analysis framework proposed in this research

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10 CHAPTER II PROBLEM DEFINITION AND MOTIVATION As noted earlier, the ite has been studied in various approaches ; the technical, the social, the anthropological, the ecological, and the symbolic approach. The review of related literature presented in this chapter, reveal s that there are many However no single method g ives a comprehensive understandi ng of a site. E ach method has developed a discourse which is oriented toward highlighting one perspective of understanding the site and eliminates or underestimates the others. Site Matters Andrea Kahn note that in each of the design specialty areas literature about specific local s and projects exists but none of them discuss es the subject of a site in reference to engage other areas or disciplines. Each discipline concerns during site analysis revolve d a round the local attributes. Th is attitude made the multiple understanding about sit es more complic ated. Grappling with site based issues evokes the analogy of seven blind men describing an elephant: each depicts vivid aspects within reach but non correlates to another, and altogether they miss the sense of the overall object of study. 1 Burns and Kahn argue that if each discourse discusses the notion of a site without taking into account other considerations of the different discourses they will uncritically iterate their own conceptions of a site which leaves a great deal of knowledge unarticulated To provide an example about a successful experience in exchanging knowledge and perspective s among different disciplines, Burns and Kahn point at the significant 1 Carol Burns and Andrea Kahn, Site M atters: Design C oncepts, H istories, and S trategies (New York: Routledge, 2005), xiv.

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11 shift in architectural theory in the past thirty years Burns and Kahn note that the interaction between architecture and other disciplines (such as philosophy and literary theory) has led to the positive transformation in the arc hitectural theory from the consideration of physical conditions toward a progressively abstract array of concern s This integration among disciplines has enriched the architectural thinking, and the architectural discourse has become more broad and inclusive. 2 Site analysis is a complex and connected professional practice. N ew approaches and methods that address the cooperation between these disciplines are needed The decision making process requires a designer to consider the correlation between the components of a site Having a comprehensive set of concepts and tools will lead to more suitable informed and critical decisions. To establish a comprehensive understanding of the notion of a site designers must acquire the knowledge and the skills necessary to explore sites in depth. They need to understand what forces form a site, how a designer investigates it and what the most critical information needed to get a comprehensive perception of a site It is extremely useful for students to know how a single study of a site can address different forces fro m different disciplines To address these correlated issues t his chapter defines the various discourses and disciplines. This chapter and the goals of this research. I t also discusses the importance of the comprehensive reading of sites during site analysis pha se of the design process. 2 Carol Burns and Andrea Kahn, Site M atters: Design C oncepts, H istories, and S trategies (New York: Routledge, 2005).

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12 describing the targeted reading of sites. In general, comprehensive means: Covering completely or broadly, Having or exhibiting wide mental grasp. In the context of the site analysis, it is understandable that a comprehensive site analysis vary from one site to another, from one purpose to another, and from one person to another. Although a designer cannot cover every single detail of a site, or even it is unnecessary to investigate every aspect giving them the same weigh t of priority, a comprehensive site analysis means that a designer needs to investigate a broad range of aspects of a site to get an exhibit of wide mental grasps and ideas that assis t him/her during the investigation of a site. The topics that need to be addressed during a comprehensive site analysis will be generated by the site itself, the purpose for this analysis, and by the set of values and meaning s inherent by the individual ex perience of the investigator. What is a S ite? s ite in this research is used as a set of environmental and social relationships that form human communities and influence human actions and behaviors. Each site has a unique set of historical, natural, and cultural values that determine how a site is evaluated. A lthough the wor d site is quiet simple, this research argues that what gives a site its uniqueness is the meanings and the values which are inherent from the surrounding context. s Anglo Norm an French, or from Latin situs "local position". Site verb dates from

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13 the late 16th century 3 Site many defini tions based on the context. In general the term s ite is defined as : A place where something (such as a building) is, was, or will be located A place where something important has happened A place that is used for a particular activity 4 In the previous definitions a site can be understood as a location ; a place that relates to other places to form a whole fabric. This l ocation can be described based o n its physical characteristics and also can be linked with other locations within spatial system s of the whole fabric A site also mean s a place for activity or event. This aspect of defining a site addresses that a site is not just the "where" of something; but also it is the product of the integrat ed relationships between human and non human, physical and sensual nature and culture and past and future The concept of site, then, simultaneous ly refers to seemingly opposed ideas: a physically specific place and a spatially and temporally expansive surround. Incorporating three distinct geographic areas, two divergent spatial ideas, and past, present, and future time frames, sites are complex 5 Burns and Kahn state that any physical site needs specific delimitations in order to be controlled or owned I t also needs to be considered in reference to its surrounding s in order to be fully understood n o particular local can be understood in isolation." 6 3 "Site Oxforddictionaries.com. Accessed September 23, 2013. http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/us/definition/american_english/site?q=site. 4 "Site Merriam Webster.com. Accessed September 23, 2013. http://www.merriam webster.com/dictionary/site 5 Carol Burns and Andrea Kahn, Site Matters: Des ign Concepts, H istori es, and S trategies (New York: Routledge, 2005) xii. 6 Ibid, xii

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14 It is helpful for designers to understand how a site is defined in various disciplines as a combination of natur al phenomena and human activity. For a geographer, a site is a certain piece of land with visual qualities or attributes that are discovered through observation. A geologist describes a site by the nature of its material F or example, structural geology describe s the composition and structure of the rocks that show how sites have been developed over a particular period of time On the other hand, d ynamic geology analyzes and describes the forces that helped in shaping these layers Historical geology studies the sequence of events recorded in the past that led to these forms in the present. 7 In the field of ecology, ecologists study the ways in which organisms or groups of organisms are related to the living and non living parts of their environment. A ccording to Lynch and Hack in site analysis ecology helps to describe "the limits and conditions of human intervention. It implies certain values, diversity, approximate stability, conservation but these are neither ultimate nor comprehensive ." 8 Burns and Kahn note that in the design discourse a site is generally defined by its boundaries that distinguish it from its surroundings. Although t his oversimplified understanding has an arguable basis because designers often receive a site with specific entity Burns and Kahn argue that this approach limits the role of designers in defining sites and the determination of a site does not tolerate on the design consideration, which 7 behalf of the Development of a Design Tool based on a C omparative C ase S tudy between Eindhoven, The Netherlands, 1993). 8 Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack, Site Planning (Cambridge Massa chusetts : MIT Press, 198 4 ), 34.

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15 is not the case. 9 Although the existing physical conditions have a significant impact on the design decisions, a site is connected to other forces from different systems on different scales. These forces indeed can influence the designer in his/her intervention of a site. In the field of l andscape a rchitecture o ne of the most well known definitions of a site is Lynch and Hack and Hack state that a site is composed of many factors above, below, and on the ground but these factors are interrela ted." 10 According to Lynch and Hack, a site is a crucial aspect of the environment. A site has "biological social, and psychological impact that goes far beyond its more obvious influence on cost and technical function." 11 Although the existing qualities of a site can limit what designers can do, t hese qualities can open new opportunities too. Lynch and Hack argue that the complexity of the factors of a site creates its uniqueness. A lthou gh these factors usually do not achieve a complete harmony, they still represent some approxi mate balance. In Transformation of the Site Nicholaas John Habraken define s a site as a space and material: f orm, p lace and u nderstanding make the site." 12 In this definition, Habraken points out two set s of variables; the physical and the spatial. The physical variables d efine a site with its physical and visual form which is one of the most obvious 9 Carol Burns and Andrea Kahn, Site Matters: Design Concepts, Histories, and Strategies (New York: Routledge, 2005). 10 Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack, Site Planning (Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press, 1984), 30. 11 Ibid 2. 12 Nicholaas John Habraken, Transformation of the Site (Cam bridge : Awater Press, 1982), 4.

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16 and remarkable attributes of a site. On the other hand, the spatial variables link a site to the surrounding context. The key element that overlap s the two sets of variable is the human's un derstanding and observation of a site. Burns and Kahn define a site as a dynamic relational construction 13 D esign intervention is the result of the exchange between what a designer actually see s and what he/she wishes to have in a site, between the reality and the possibility. 14 Burns and Kahn also disc uss wh at const itutes a site in design; they argue that the first step of the design process starts when a designer receive s a piece of land with specific boundaries. When a designer starts to analyze a site he /she discovers new connections that expand his /her scope of research and h e /she start s to add more analytical layers that go beyond the physical features of a site. Burns and Kahn note that t here are many terms that define the physical location (such as place, property, ground, setting context, situation and landscape), but these terms only identify a particular region. Burns and Kahn argue that none of these terms is "exactly equivalent to the full understanding of a sit e 15 Unlike the notions of these terms, a site is purposely based; when designers start to call a particular piece of land a site, then the purpose of it has already been stated. To simplify the complicated relationships that form a site, Burns and Kahn cl assify three distinguished areas of a site. The first one is the area of control which identifies the physical site within its property lines The second one is the area of 13 Carol Burns and Andrea Kahn, Site Matters: Design Concepts, Histories, and Strategies (New York: Routledge, 2005). 14 Ibid. 15 Ibid.

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17 influence which comprises systems and forces that affect a site even if they do not take place within its boundaries ( such as the solar system, hydrological features, and geomorphology ) The third one is the area of effect which reflects the domains beyond the given s ite that are affected by design ( such as the g rowth of a metropo litan region water cycles and infrastructural systems ) 16 In this context a site is understood at three different levels (see f igure 1) Although each level has distinguished characteristics and implementations they overlap and affect each other in a complementary relationship Figure 1: The three distinct areas of the site influenced by Burns and Kahn classification. Designers need to consider the correlations among the different systems that form sites ; the comprehensive understanding of these relations will help them to bring the most suitable intervention to the area In other words, a site needs to be understood in reference to its context Doreen Massey points out that the unique image of a site cannot be understood unless a person see s it within a set of places, a sense of place to places beyond 17 Massey note s that to get this unique perspective, designers need to read places as processes Designers should perceive a site without boundaries but 16 Carol Burns and Andrea Kahn, Site Matters: Design Concepts, Histories, and Strategies (New York: Routledge, 2005). 17 Doreen B. Massey, Space, Place and Gender (Cambridge: Polity Press, 1994), 156. 1 The area of control 2 The area of influence 3 The area of effect

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18 multiple relation s, without a single unique identity but consisting of a multitude of conflicts This perspective does not deny the importance of uniqueness of place. 18 To conclude a site is a set of dynamic relations with existing qualities T he literature review states that the term s ite but a whole set of variable s and factors need to be considered to draw the most comprehensive image of a site. If each discourse discusse s the notion of a site without taking into account other considerations that are important for other discourses they will uncritically iterate their own conceptions of site s which wil l leave a great deal of knowledge unarticulated. What is S ite A nalysis? Site analysis is a multidisciplinary term T he literature review presented in this chapter shows that site analysis is a systematic diagnostic process that requires knowledgeable and skilled designers to critically investigate most of the important factors of a site Site analysis has been approached in a wide spectrum of methods during the past few decades. E ach method reflects the designers' w ay of thinking about a site and the level of information that is required to acknowledge site from their point of view James LaGro define s site analysis as "a diagnostic process that identifies the opportunities and constraints for a specific land use program." 19 LaGr o considers site analysis phase as a systematic process that follow s a sequence of steps. These steps include site selection, inventory, analysis, concept development, and design implementation. According to LaGro, building sites are the smallest units in a broad 18 Doreen B. Massey, Space, Place and Gender (Cambridge: Polity Press, 1994). 19 James A LaGro, Site Analysis: A Contextual Approach to Sustainable Land Planning and Site Design, Second Edition ( Wiley, 2007), 169.

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19 range of spatial scales when performing site analys i s (see f ig ure 2) LaGro classifies the contextual data sets of a site into three categories which are : physical, biological, and cultural attributes. In his position, these three attributes form a site and need to be considered during the analysis of any site in order to create suitable and sustainable de velopment 20 Figure 2: Spatial hierarchy regions, landscapes, sites : James A. LaGro, Site Analysis: A Contextual Approach to Sustainable Land Planning and Site Design, 2007 Site, Space, and Structure Kim W. Todd note s that the purpose of site analysis is to separate a whole complex image into simpler components and understand them in relationship to one another and to the whole 21 Todd recommend s that to make site analysis more affective and meaningful, designers should avoid getting too much information to begin with, and the y also should avoid performing an oversimplified 20 James A LaGro, Site Analysis: A Contextual Approach to Sustainable Land Planning and Site Design Second Edition (Wiley, 2007). 21 Kim W Todd, Site, Space, and Structure (New York : Van Nostrand Reinhold, 1985), 11.

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20 analysis that does not give any valuable information that influence the creative decisi ons of the design 22 Ian McHarg 's idea s of site analysis propose deconstructing components of the nature into a system of layers H e suggest s examining, mapping and evaluating different aspect s of a site individually and then overlapping them on top of one another 23 This approach helps acknowledging the components of a specific natural environment ( such as geology, hydrology, vegetation cover, surface waters, and climatic conditions ) within the surrounding context McHarg also established a value system to diagnose the data appear to result in scientific outcomes that lead to rational decisions For Lynch and Hack the main two sources for site analysis are the site itself and the p urpose that it will be used for s ite analysis has two branches, the one oriented to our particular purpose and the other to the site itself." 24 Lynch and Hack argue that t hese two sources are interrelated ; in most situations a site draws the limitations for the targeted project O n the oth er hand, the purpose of a site can direct a designer toward a particular approach in analyzing a site. 25 Although, in many situations, a site is analyzed for fitness to a purpose, Lynch and Hack st ate that designers must consider the interests of the existing occupants. Lynch and Hack argue that on site experience allow a designer to set realistic purposes before 22 Kim W Todd, Site, Space, and Structure (New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold, 1985). 23 Ian McHarg, Design with Nature (New York: The Natural History Press, 1969), 144. 24 Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack, Site Planning (Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press, 1984) 29. 25 Ibid.

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21 finishing the analysis of a site. On the other hand, it can help a designer to judge and evaluate a site before knowing its detailed purpose 26 The site analysis approach proposed by Burns and Kahn distinguishes between and ; they argue that a specific context of a site provides a designer with the base and the raw material that he/she can start with (thinking about a site) and the ideas of a designer about a site provide a theoretical background toward his/her action or intervention (site thinking) 27 These two approaches are related in a complementary manner. In other words, the generated by designers 28 Site Citation: T he Ground for Modern Landscape Architecture Elizabeth Meyer state s that the qualities of a site experienced by a designer are not the framework of the designer's creative act but they definitely draw the starting point of it. Meyer suggest s that a site is supposed to develop its own program instead of receiving a predefined on e. 29 Lynch and Hack discuss this situation noting that this occasionally happen s A of it According to Lynch and Hack this kind of analysis is more difficult than the traditional site analysis. 26 Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack, Site Planning (Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press, 1984). 27 Carol Burns and Andrea Kahn, Site Matters: Design C oncepts, H istories, and S trategies (New York: Routledge, 2005). 28 Ellen Braae and Anne Tietjen, Constructing Sites on a Large Scale: t owards New Design Methods Nordic Journal of Architecture (Copenhagen: The Danish Architectural Press, 2011). 29 Elizabeth Meyer, Site Matters: Design Concepts, Histories, and Strategies edited by Carol Burn s and Andrea Kahn, 92 129, New York: Routledge, 2005.

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22 In this situation, a design er must analyze a site or multiple sites, with more attention to the ongoing social and ecological systems. A designer also has to examine the context of the locality (ecology, circulation, behaviors, structures, and associated images) with equal care 30 Comprehensively analyzing a site using this approach will draw the possibilities of future plans and the program will be developed from the site itself. A choice can be made by evaluating and comparing different alter natives. This comparison must balance ecology, market and social purpose. 31 means Lynch and Hack define it as the first act of design that is built in a dialogue between the designer and the client. 32 A program is a proposed outcome and hypothesis of how a design will function when it is occupied. Me yer views sites as "plots are not empty canvases, but full of spaces, full of nature and history, whose latent forms and meanings can be surfaced, and made palpable, through design." 33 From this perspective Meyer identifies principles that are important for site an alysis : (1) site as armature or framework (2) site as geomorphological figure; site as ecosystem or geological fragment and (3) and site as temporal phenomenon, 30 Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack, Site Planning (Cambridge, Ma ssachusetts: MIT Press, 1984). 31 Ibid. 32 Ibid 8. 33 Elizabeth Meyer, Site Matters: Design Concepts, Histories, and Strategies edited by Carol Burn and Andrea Kahn, 92 129, New York: Routledge, 2005, 102.

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23 haecceity, and subjective experience. 34 These principles are crucial to acknowledge the physic al properties of sites ( such as materials and structures ) and the spatial properties of sites ( such as atmosphere and qualities ) From the Ground U Kahn state s that traditional site analysis needs to be modified to meet the ongoing complexity of the notion of sites. Kahn argues that the existing site analysis methods do not generate any new knowledge about particular sites 35 In most situations, the conduct ed analysis re acknowledges what is already known; it produce s inventories organized into standard place based categories as building typologies, usages, infrastructures, and formal urban patterns. 36 Instead of a traditional site analysis, Kahn suggest s an intentional method that can reveal the complex qualities of a site Site construction breaks with analytic objectivity and can be seen as a bodily site exploration For Kahn, unclassifiable aspects of a site can be grasped only through immersive practice. 37 Site analys is is a multidisciplinary term that has been approached in a wide spectrum of methods during the past few decades. This research discusses site analysis by exploring it through different lenses (architect, landscape architect, urba n planner, historian and theorists ). This will be extremely helpful to obtain the most comprehensiv e image and for understanding different characters of a site 34 Site Matters: Design Concepts, Histories, and Strategies edited by Carol Burn and Andrea Kahn, 92 129, New York: Routledge, 2005, 102. 35 Andrea Kahn, From the Ground Up: Programming the Urban Site (The Harvard Architecture Review, 1998). 36 Ibid 37 Ibid.

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24 Why is it I mportant to A nalyze S ite s in a C omprehensive M a nn er? When a word or phrase is taken out of context, it can become meaningless, or worse, its meaning can become distorted, even to the point of saying the opposite of what was originally intended. This is why journalists are often heard to say 38 As discussed earlier, the notion of site is complex; it has a set of dynamic relations with existing qualities variables and factors and their relations need to be considered to draw the most comprehensive image of a site. Site analysis a s well, is a multidisciplinary term that includes i nformation gathered fr om various sources and will be applied by many professions engaged in land development process ( see figure 3). Figure 3 : Information from the site analysis is utilized by many professions engaged in the land development process : James A. LaGro, Site Analysis: A Contextual Approach to Sustainable Land Planning and Site Design 2007. 38 Thompson Waterman, T he Fundamental s of Landscape Architecture (Fairchild Books, 2009), 50.

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25 Landscape architects in particular benefit from critically analyzing sites; their understanding of the specific connections between landscape and social, cultural, e nvironmental, and political structures is crucial to the success of their projects. The ultimate goal of a comprehensive site analysis approach is to create designs that naturally, environmentally, culturally, and socially fit in the existing context. r eading s traditional site analysis and the targeted comprehensive site analysis. So what does ead ? The o ld English of Germanic origin; related to Dutch raden and German raten 'advise, guess'. Early senses included 'advise' and 'interpret (a riddle or dream). the 12th century 39 ; it is a very common term that can be understood and used by most people. 40 It has different definitions but the one s that meet the research requirements are: Look at and comprehend the meaning of (written or printed matter) by mentally interpreting the characters or symbols of which it is composed. Discover (information) by reading it in a written or printed source. Understand or interpret the nature or significance of something 41 To understand a site in a comprehensive manner, d esigners must look and comprehend the meanings and the underlying values of a s ite They also must discover the information that is visible and invisible, and then critically understand them to obtain 39 "Read." Merriam Webster.com. Accessed September 23, 2013. http://www.merri am webster.com/dictionary/read. 40 See appendix A. 41 "Read Oxforddictionaries.com. Accessed September 23, 2013. http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/us/definition/american_english/read?q=read

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26 the most comprehensive image of a site t o comprehend site requires many horizons of understanding historical, philosophical, rhetorical, legal; analytic, formal, descriptive, aesthetic; strategic, tactical; social, economic, political. 42 E ach site has a unique set of historical, natural, and cultural values that can influence a designer about how a site should be evaluated. According to Christophe Girot T he Four Trace Concepts in Landscape Architecture ach piece of information gathered in the site analysis phase can influence design decisions imply different actions 43 A designer understands a site by overlaying different analytical layers and recognizing the vis ible and the invisible forces. In this context, designers should go beyond the tangible forces; tangible forces provide designers with a partial image that does not reflect what is in a site and how it should be transformed. On the other hand, sites have problems and issues that are hig hly interrelated I n many situations the solution for one issue requires designers to solve other site's issues F ew, if any, issues can be treated effectively in isolation from other site's issues. The most obvious benefits of a comprehensive approach i n site analysis are the technical ones. According to LaGro, site analysis summarizes the suitability of a site for the programmed uses. Different physical, biological, and cultural attributes can influence the suitability of a site for the project under consideration. LaGro state s that t he careful analysis of sites and its context can lead to higher qua lity built environments. If the existing conditions of a site are poorly understood, the development for this site can 42 Carol Burns and Andrea Kahn, Site M atters: Design C oncepts, H istories, and S trategies (New York: Routledge, 2005), xxiv. 43 Christopher Girot, The Four Trace Concepts in Landscape Architecture (New York: Prin ceton Architectural Press, 1999), 63.

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27 result in negative environmental, so cial, and economic impacts. 44 LaGro also argue s that a context sensitive approach that aims at sustainable planning and development will help protect public health, safety, and welfare. Acknowledging different issues of a site can help in avoiding inherent site problems On the other hand, LaGro state s that a designer can use the existing valuable qualities, materials and other components of a site in his/her future project The usage of these components will reduce long term maintenance costs, and the risks to life and property from natural hazards. 45 LaGro notes that some inherent physiographic constraints (such as steep slopes, shallow bedrock, water, and wetlands) in a site m ight mak e it unsuitable for development (see t able 2.1) Other site s (or parts of a site) m ight be suitable for development but relatively inaccessible. Lack of access can be because of intervening constraints. According to LaGro, extending roads and utilities to isolated site areas might be unbeneficial and un authorized; pockets of undevelopable land can render the original program unfeasible. LaGro states that site analysis can uncover site constraints that might (see f igure 4) Accurate information from reading the physic al features of any site leads to more suitable projects. This information is gathered based on the design program or the site itself and includes, but are not limited to topography, hydrology, climate, and soil. Climate, for example, is a very critical at tribute that a designer must give deep attention during site analysis. Climate conditions (such as precipitation, air temperature, solar incidence, wind direction, and wind speed) vary annually, seasonally, and daily. A good 44 James A LaGro, Site Analysis: A Contextual Approach to Sustainable Land Planning and Site Design, Second Edition ( Wiley, 2007). 45 Ibid

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28 reading of a site's microclimat e can help a designer in anticipating future conditions and develops new solutions for these conditions. A designer can also orient his/her design concept based on the site analysis findings; these findings give the designer a rational scientific base for spatial organization and orientation of buildings, structures, and outdoor spaces. These informed decisions can significantly reduce energy consumption for heating and cooling buildings and create more pleasant environments. Table 2.1 : Selected development constraints : James A. LaGro, Site Analysis: A Contextual Approach to Sustainable Land Planning and Site Design 2007 Constraint Examples Ecological infrastructure Aquifer recharge areas, wetlands, surface water, critical wildlife habitat Health or safety hazards Floodplains, earthquake fault zones, areas susceptible to landslides Physiographic barriers Steep slopes, highly erodible soils, shallow bedrock Natural resources Prime farmland, sand and gravel deposits, specimen trees, scenic views Historic resources Historic buildings, archaeological sites Legal restrictions Zoning codes, subdivision ordinances, easements, deed restrictions Nuisances Noises, odors, unsightly views Another critical technical consideration, according to LaGro, is ecology. Ec ological considerations include, but are not limited to the habitat, exotic species, wetlands, and wildlife. LaGro notes that human activities (such as agriculture, forestry, and urban development) have negatively changed the structure and ecological function of many of the landscapes in Europe. LaGro refers that to the continuing change in land uses which destroyed some habitats, and also fragment and functionally disconnect others.

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29 During the reading of a site, designers need to be cautious about the impact of his/her design interventions on the surrounding environment, "protecting existing native vegetation and wildlife is not only good for the environment, but it also contributes to the unique sense of place of a site." 46 Figure 4: Constraints and opportunities may be on site or off site attributes that shape development suitability patterns and influence the spatial organization of program elements on the site: James A. LaGro, Site Analysis: A Contextual Approach to Sustainable Land Planning and Site Design, 2007. Beside s the technical considerations of sites (such as topography, climate, hydrology, and soils), designers must be aware of how a site is socially and culturally 46 James A LaGro, Site Analysis: A Contextual Approach to Sustainable Land Planning and Site Design, Second Edition ( Wiley, 2007), 138.

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30 constructed. It is important for them to understand the underlying values of sites; acknowledging and evaluating a site's values can contribute to the success of the project. Community development, for example, mu st aim at enhancing people 's life. T his can be achieved by en gaging people's value systems in driving the process of change. Sites feature a multipl e of interests. Conflicts between underlying goals and values must be precisely understood and reflected through design decisions. Xavier de Souza Briggs recommends that designers should consider the interactive systems that form communities. Briggs also argues that designers can play a significant role in bridging the gap between stakeholders and community members. To be capable of fulfilling this position, designers have to comprehend and acknowledge people 's values, needs and expectations. 47 Briggs addresse s the existing conflict between community social values and industry which generally faces community development. Briggs also state s that designers should be knowle dgeable about different value system s ; assessing community values and their conflicts will give them a solid base that they can refer to. As part social movement and part industry, community development will continue to face dilemmas about core goals and values. But being more explicit about the range of values that motivate the work, and recognizing values and value conflicts for what they are, is a key place to start. 48 According to Lynch and Hack, some of the people who will be affected by the new development might be absent uninformed or voiceless. A designer has the responsibility to speak for the values of the absence users needs and expectations It is 47 Xavier de Souza Briggs. Rethinking Community Development: Managing Dilemmas about Goals and Values (Massachusetts Institute of Technolog y, 2007), accessed February 2, 2014. http://web.mit.edu/workingsmarter/media/pdf ws kia brief 0701.pdf. 48 Ibid, 30.

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31 very useful that a designer observes and interacts directly with the actual users of the new site. This approach can help a designer to predict how these users will act in the new configuration. Lynch and Hack note that engaging the actual users of a site in the design of the new plan s is one of the most effective strategies in creating successful design. 49 Culture as well, is one of the most critical attribute s that can directly affect the suitability of any project. C ultural influences provide designers with rich resources in design ing projects These influence s can lead to more suitable design s that fit harmoni ously in the existing context. In Primitive Culture Edward B Tylor define s culture as a complex whole which includes knowledge, belief, art, morals, law, custom s and any other capabilities and habits acquired by man as a member of society 50 This definition states a rich spectrum of knowledge related to culture. Understanding the cultural roots in a certain community will help designers to get answers ideas and solutions that can improve design interventions and make projects harmoniously fit in the urban fabric. Social studies also take a place in the site analysis phase; the understanding of demographics, income level and ethnicity play a significant role in the formation of any site. A comprehensive reading of a site can evolve the awareness and appreciation of a designer to the s ocial values and cons iderations Crim e rate, for example, one of the social characters that reflect s a certain perception about any site, neighborhood or community. D esigners can play a critical ro le in decreasing crime rate through their designs and approaches F irst designers need to anal yze the factors that contribute to this 49 Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack, Site Planning (Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press, 1984). 50 Edward B Tylor, Primitive Culture (New York : Gordon Press Publishers, 1973), 1.

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32 phenomenon and then they need to change this phenomenon and minimize the impacts of these factors by their design ideas and spatial organization. For instance they should emphasize the signifi cant role of citizens in the community to assist in establishing and maintaining public safety. A c ommunity oriented design for example, encourages citizen s' involvement and accep tance of responsibility. All ethics so far evolved rest upon a single premise: that the individual is a member of a community of interdependent parts. His instincts prompt him to compete for his place in that community, but his ethics prompt him also to co operate 51 This research discusses site analysis by exploring it thr ough different lenses (architect, landscape architect, urb an planner, historian and theorists ). Discussing this approach from the perspective of a landscape architect can benefit other disciplines engaged in the design process ; landscape architecture occup ies the middle ground between different disciplines and professions. Landscape a rchitecture touches history, culture, literatur e, ecology and more. Landscape a rchitecture is concerned about affecting human perception and behaviors. The profession of lands cape architecture aims at creating, enhancing, maintaining, and protecting places in order to be functional, aesthetically pleasing, meaningful sustainable and to me et human needs and expectations. Summ a ry Th is chapter addresse d that the ite has been studied using various approaches; the technical, the social, the anthropological, the ecological, and the symbolic approach. The review of the related literature shows that although there are 51 Aldo Leopold, A Sand C ounty A lmanac, the L and Ethic (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1966), 239.

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33 many significant methods that influence the research of designers in different fields no single method giv e s a comprehensive understanding of the site. Each method has developed a discourse which is oriented toward highlighting one perspective of understanding the site and eliminates or underestimates the o thers This chapter also argued that although the s a whole set of variables and factors and their relationships need to be considered to draw the most comprehensive image of a s ite. If each discourse discusses the notion of a site wi thout taking into account other considerations of different discourses they will uncritically iterate their own conceptions of sites which will leave a great deal of knowledge unarticulated. You must start right from the beginning, let ting your new buildings grow from the daily lives of the people who will live in them, shaping the houses to the measure of the people's songs, weaving the pattern of a village as if on the village looms, mindful of the trees and the crops that will grow t here, respectful to the skyline and humble before the seasons. There must be neither faked tradition nor faked modernity, but an architecture that will be the visible and permanent. 52 This chapter also noted that s ite analysis is a multidisciplinary term that includes information gathered from various sources and will be applied by many professions engaged in the land development process. Site analysis has been approached in a wide spectrum of methods during the p ast few decades. Discussing site analysis by exploring it through different lenses (architect, landscape architect, urban plann er, historian and theoretical) is helpful to obtain the most comprehensive image and understanding the characteristics of a site. 52 Hassan Fathy, Architecture for the Poor: An Experiment in Rural Egypt ( University of Chicago Press 2000), 45.

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34 This chapter also found that, in the cont ext of the site analysis, it is understandable that a comprehensive site analysis vary from one site to another, from one purpose to another, and from one person to another. T opics that are need ed to be addressed during a comprehensive site analysis will b e generated by a site itself, the purpose for this analysis, and by the set of values and meaning inherent by the individual experience of the investigator. Although the technical considerations of sites are fundamental designers must also be aware of how a site is socially and culturally constructed. It is important for them to understand the underlying values of sites; acknowledging and evaluating site's values can contribute to the success of the project. Chapter Three discusses how site analysis is app roached in the most prevalent methods of site analysis to demonstrate an understanding of these methods to be able to discover what is missing in each method and their inherent biases.

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35 CHAPTER III METHODS OF SITE ANAL YSIS The information provided in the preceding chapters demonstrates that there are many significant methods in site analysis that influence the theoretical and practical experience and knowledge in different fields. Kahn argues that the existing site analysis methods do not generate any new knowledge about particular sites. 1 In most situations, the conducting analysis re acknowledges what is already known; it produces inventories organized into standard place based categories as building typologies, usages, infrastructures, and formal urban patterns. 2 Th is chapter examines di fferent methods used in analyzing sites over the past few decades. The presented methods are the most prevalent in the design profession On the other hand, the proponents of these methods are from various disciplines; architects, landscape architects, pla nners, educators researchers and theorists. Since this thesis is more oriented toward the teaching of site analysis rather than professional practice; h aving multiple lenses in analyzing a site allows explor ing it from different perspectives and different angles. It also give s students a wide spectrum of tools and vocabulary that allow s them navigate their own value system and in some situations, to create a hybrid by overlaying these methods to get the most useful tools of them to achieve the most comprehensive reading of a site. The m ethods to be discussed in this chapter are : t he Technical Method by Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack t he Scientific Systematic Method by Ian McHarg, the Context Sen sitive Method by James A. LaGro and the Experiential Method by Bernard Lassus 1 Andrea Kahn, From the Ground Up: Programming the Urban Site (The Harvard Architecture Review, 1998). 2 Ibid.

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36 and Richard Haag. The sequence followed for discussing these methods is a reflection of the degree of how each method is prescribed T his research will start with the T echnical M ethod (the most direct method), and will end with the E xperiential M ethod (the most experiential and flexible one) The Proponents of the Selected Methods The propone nts of the selected methods have contributed in shaping the design profession during the past several decades. Their ideas still today. Kevin Andrew Lynch was an American urban planner and author He received a Bachelor's degree in city planning in 19 47 Lynch began lecturing at Massachusetts Institute of Technology ( MIT ) in 1948 and became a full professor in 1963. Lynch consulted for many cities in the United States and abroad on projects such as Boston's Government Center and W aterfront Park. Lynch influences the field of city planning through his work on the theory of city form, and on the perception of the city environment and its consequences for city design 3 Gary Hack is an architect and planner. He teaches and practices planning and urban design. He rec eived a Bachelor's degree and a Master's degree in architecture, and a Master's degree in planning. Hack is the former dean of the School of Design at The University Pennsylvania H e has prepared plans for over thirty cities in the United States and abroad such as the redevelopment plan for the Prudential Center in Boston 4 3 Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Institute Archives and Special Collections, accessed on February 19, 2014. http://libraries.mit.edu/archives/research/collections/collections mc/mc208.html. 4 University of Pennsylvania, School of Design, accessed on February 19, 2014. http://www.design. upenn.edu/people/hack_gary.

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37 Ian McHarg 5 who was born in Scotland, is a landscape architect urban planner and a writer. He remains one of the most influential pioneers of the environmental movement. McHarg received a Bachelor's degree and a Master's degree in both landscape architecture and city planning from Harvard University. He was responsible for the creation of the Department of l andscape a rchitecture at the University of Pennsylvania in 1960. In 1969 McHarg published Design with Nature a finalist for the National Book Award and a book that led to fundamental changes in the teaching and practice of landscape architecture 6 James A. LaGro is an American landscape architect. He received a Master's degree from Cornell University in landscape architecture in 1982 and a PhD in natural resou rce s policy and planning in 1991 LaGro was the c hair of the Department of Urban and Region al Planning at University of Wisconsin Madison from 2002 2008 His recent book: Site Analysis: A Contextual Approach to Sustainable Site Planning and Design was ranked as one of the top planning books in 2008. Bernard Lassus is a French landscape architect. He was a professor at the Higher National Scho ol of Beaux Arts (ENSBA) in 1968 He partnered with Bernard Teyssdre in founding the first Department for Teaching a nd Research in the Plastic Arts at the Universit of Paris 1 at the Sorbonne. Lassus was also involved, from 1976 to 1985, in 5 For more information refer to: Lynn Miller and Sidonio Pardal, The Classic McHarg: an Interview (Lisbon: CESUR, Technical University of Lisbon, 1992). 6 talism: Environmentalism in Landscape Architecture, edited by Michel Conan, Washington, D.C.: Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, 2000, 97.

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38 the creation of the Landscape School at Versailles where he was the director of the Wor kshop Charles Rivire Dufresny 7 Richard Haag is an American la ndscape architect. He received his Bachelor s d egree and a Master's degree in landscape a rchitecture. In 1958 Haag joined the University of Washington faculty in Seattle, Washington and i n 1964 he founded the landscape architecture d esign program at the u niversity. The work of Haag is internationally recognized for its creativity, sensitivity to the natural env ironment, and adaptive re use of existing structures and facilities. 8 All of the proponents of the selected methods are well known designers from different disciplines. They ha d remarkable impact on the design profession. These authors also have participated in founding many of landscape architecture programs; they are educators, authors and practitioners. Their methods are taught in many of design schools in the United States and other regions over the world The Technic al Method Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack The Technical Method relies on the relationship between the natural categories of a According to the Jour nal of Architectural Education Lynch and Hack 's methodology in site analysis Site Planning has remained the only comprehensive source of information and recognized system for over two decades that deals with all of the principal activities and concerns of 7 For more information visit Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Colle ction website: http://www.doaks.org. 8 For more information visit Richard Haag Association website.

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39 arranging the outdoor physical environment. 9 Lynch and Hack note that their method is imported from other disciplines "since this is an introduction to an old and well developed art there is not much here that is original. These ideas come from many sources and have been so condensed, reordered, and interpreted that they can hardly be attributed to any single origin." 10 As discussed before, Lynch and Hack define a site as "composed of many factors above, below, and on the ground but these factors are interrelated." 11 According to Lynch and Hack, a site is a crucial aspect of the environment. A site has biological, social, and psychological influences that are as important as the influence on cost and technical function. Although the existing qualities of a site can li mit what people can do, these quali ties can open new opportunities for them too Lynch and Hack argue that the complexity of the site's factors creates its uniq ueness. Although these factors unusually achieve the complete har mony, they still represent some approximate balance. Site analysis, for Lynch and Hack, "is a basis for conservation and also a prelude to successful revolution." 12 Lynch and Hack's site analysis method focus es on the purely formal, visual, and the aesthetic qualities of landscape. For Lynch and Hack, the realistic projection of visual elements lead s to create a grounded methodology that represent s the living environment as its users perceive it to reconstruct the ir cognitive maps 13 They 9 Journal of Architectural Education: review of second edition of Site Planning, 1990. 10 Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack, Site Planning (Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press, 1984), vi. 11 Ibid, vi. 12 Ibid, 32. 13 Alexander Tzonis and Liane Lefaiver, Paper on "Thinking in Forms as well as

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40 consider the "image" and "cognitive mapping" a s the main categories that develop a successful "user based" design methodology In the Technical method of site analysis Lynch and Hack use simple vocabularies ( such as site user place climate ) which make their approach accessible f or the majority of users (students, architects, planners, ecologists . etc. ) This accessible approach invites different community members to participate in the developmental process. Lynch and Hack's method can be understood publicly in a direct and non symbolic approach and therefore unambiguous and unguarded terms 14 Lynch and Hack start the site analysis process with basic questions that identify what the problem is: "For whom is the place being made? For what purpose? Who will decide what the form is to be? What resources can be used? What type of solution is expected? In wh at location will it be buil t?" 15 They point out that by defining those problems and providing possib le solutions a designer will create the base for the entire process of site planning. They tend to transform complex problems into simple appositions, theoretical problems into empirical issues, and social problems into technical ones. 16 Words." Kevin Lynch and the Cognitive Theory of the city As cited in: Xiaodong Li, ite: A Holistic Approach toward Site Analysis on behalf of the Development of a Design Tool Based on a Comparative Case Study between FengShui The Netherlands, 1993). 14 Ibid. 15 Kevi n Lynch and Gary Hack, Site Planning (Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press, 1984), 3. 16 Ibid.

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41 For Lynch and Hac k, the main two sources for site analysis are the site itself and the purpose that it will be used for s ite analysis has two branches, the one oriented to our particular purpose and the other to the site itself." 17 They argue that these two sources are hi ghly interrelated; in most situations a site draws the limitations for the targeted project O n the other hand, the purpose of a site can direct a designer toward a particular approach and techniques in analyzing it For Lynch and Hack, although sites are analyzed for fitness of purpose, designers must consider existing occupant s of site s and their interests. Lynch and Hack argue tha t on site experience allow s designer s to set realistic purposes before finishing the analysis of a site. On the other hand, o n site experience can help designer s judge and evaluate site s before knowing the detailed purpose that a site will serve Lynch and Hack point at the complexity of the nature of a site the conditions below ground, the surface form, activity and life, the structures and utilities, the ocean of light and air that overlaps them, and the human meaning, rights and regulations. 18 A designer navigate s between site data to organize the m within a pattern that can support and fit his/her design. Lynch and Hack argu e that a convincing site pattern can only be achieved by repeated analy sis and trial of possibilities. 19 The s ite analysis phase, for Lynch and Hack, branches into s ite a nalysis and u ser a nalysis. Lynch and Hack's site analysis method relies on the relation between the physical categories of the the 17 Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack, Site Planning (Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press, 1984), 29. 18 Ibid. 19 Ibid.

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42 includes ecolog y, soil, water table, landform, contour; climate, and orientation. On the other hand, the term includes : future users, clients, designers...etc. Lynch and Hack analyze site s by emphasizing both as main objects Their approach create s a balance betwe en the interests of different disciplines (architecture, landscape architecture, urban planning, and engineering ). Briefly, this research will discuss Lynch and Hack's method with its two branches ; s ite analysis and user a nalysis and also the techniques that this method proposes Site Analysis Analyzing the natural categories of a site should lead to a comprehensive understanding to the ecological and the behavioral systems. According to Lynch and Hack, although it is hard to create a site that is completely mature and harmonious with nature, designers must achieve some approximate balance between the ecological and the behavioral systems 20 In some situations, site development may lead to nega tive e ffect s to a whole chain of living habitat On the other hand, other designs can create new connection s and develop deeper meaning s Understanding how these components work and interact with each other will create a scientific knowledge that can help designers make informed decisions about future d evelopment. Lynch and Hack's meth odology in site analysis has a systematic outline T hey recommend designers follow these s t eps : (1) s ite v isit (2) s ite h istory a nalysis (3) p reparing s chedule f or the r equired d ata (4) s ystematic s urvey (5) d ata s ynthesis (6) s ite s election (7) b est u se (8) p erformance and r elevance of d ata 20 Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack, Site Planning (Cambridg e, Massachusetts: MIT Press, 1984).

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43 Site Visit Due to the complexity of the picture of any site, Lynch and Hack note that on site exploration will help a designer recogniz e the main characters of a site, and also to draw a mental image which can be used in the following steps of site analysis. They also propose that a designer should study a site without knowing the targeted purpose of it. According to Lynch and Hack, this a pproach of analysis will introduce information and clues that are not expected, and also will avoid missing some important data. Lynch and Hack also suggest that a designer should visit a site during different occasions and varied circumstances of weather, light and activity. This can generate more accurate and useful information. According to Lunch and Hack, site visits are useful when discussing preferences about places that are not established yet. Site History Analysis Lynch and Hack note that the understanding of site history, ecology and image is always fundamental during site analysis phase. Designers must investigate site's natural evolution, its former use and association. Designers should also research the site i mage in the mind of its users and decision makers. It is useful for a designer to understand how these participants think and feel about a site, how they characterize it and what they expect it to be. Preparing a Schedule for the Required Data A designer precedes the site analysis with a systematic collection of data Lynch and Hack recommend designers at the early stage of the project generate a list of the data required This list should be short and it will automatically develop with the prog ression of the site analysis Lynch and Hack note that t his list differs from one site to another based on the purpose of the development, the nature of the site and the resource s available to make the survey. According to Lynch and Hack, this list should aim at acknowledging the impact (negative and positive) of these

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44 factors (specially the environmental impacts) on the site itself and t he neighboring sites and users. This list should investigate : 1 General s ite context 2 Physical data, s ite and a djacent l and 3 Cultu ral data, site and a djacent l and and 4 Correlation of d ata. 21 Systematic Survey After visiting a site and taking an initial image about it, a designer can start a systematic and detailed survey. In this stage, according to Lynch and Hack, th e survey is directed by the purpose that is meant to achieve the desire d future image. Lynch and Hack note that each site is unique in some w ay. Although some information ( such as topograph ic base maps, climate data, mapping of activity or circulation) is always required for every site, other information is required only for specific sites. Lynch and Hack argue that designers should not gather too m uch data at the first stages of site analysis information is expensive to gather and expansive to use." 22 Starting with a short list of the required information will save time, effort and money. Data Synthesis At this stage, information gathered from the systematic survey must be presente d in a readable form (graphic and written) This representation should reflect the essential of the site's nature and how it will be developed (such as major constrain, problems and potentials). 21 Refer to Appendix G in Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack Site Planning 420 425. 22 Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack, Site Planning (Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press, 1984), 63.

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45 Site Selectio n In some situations, a designer will be given certain objectives from a client and based on his/her analysis for multiple sites the program will be developed According to Lynch and Hack this type of analysis is more difficult than the traditional site analysis; a designer must analyze different site s with more attention to the ongoing social and ecological systems. A designer has also to examine the context of the locality (ecology, circulation, behaviors, structures, and associated images) with equal care. Compre hensively analyzing a site in this approach will develop the possibilities of future plans. Best Use A choice can be made by evaluating and comparing different alternatives. This comparison must balance ecology, market and social purpose. 23 At this stage, a designer will provide the client with a comparative analysis for each alternative, that includes sketch layout, market analysis, and schedulable of estimated cost and benefits. A designer is responsible to advi s e the client about which site can achieve the targeted purpose more successfully Performance and Relevance of Data Lynch and H ack note that site analysis in general, is generated for a particular purpose, but the analysis lose s its benefits once a development has been carried through. 24 According to Lynch and Hack, site analysis is not self contained. This phase generate s the first thoughts about the design. Site analysis should be a continuing process and information from site anal ysis should also be well organized. Some of the previous information will be used through different phases of the design and the developmental process. On the other hand, other information (such as a 23 Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack, Site Planning (Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press, 1984). 24 Ibid

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46 shifting market, ecology in transition, or a fluctuating behavior setting) can be critical to the performance of future development. Lunch and Hack recommend that designers have a framework that accept s and correlate s changing data. 25 User Analysis According to Lunch and Hack, the main goal of site planning and, indeed, any other design, is to fit the human needs and actions. 26 Designers must understand how site' s users will interact and value transformed site s u "all those who interact with the place in any way: live in it, work in it, pass through it, repair it, control it, profit from it, suffer from it, and even dream about it." 27 The complexity that the term reflects require s designer s to consider different values and considerations Designers should find solution s that will satisfy divers and conflicting requirements. In many situations, future users d o not have a direct voice in the developmental process ( because they are absence, voiceless or unknown ). A designer has the responsibility to speak for these absence users' values, needs and expectations. A designer must have a deep understanding of the current and prospective users of the site Demographic analysis is the first step that investigates who will use a site and how they are distributed among what classes of people. 28 According to Lynch and Hack, if users differ in culture and socioeconomic classes designers should expect significant 25 Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack, Site Planning (Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press, 1984). 26 Ibid. 27 Ibid, 67. 28 Ibid, 69.

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47 differences in how these users will interact and respon d to the site. T hey also note that other differences may appear among people of different age, gender personal history, life style or ethnicity. The reaction generated by users toward a site will also vary if they own or not, use it frequently or occasionally, or they de pend on the site for their livelihood. 29 Lynch and Hack point at the complex ity of this variation within a large scale project. I n this case the designer might not have the time or the resources to investigate all the classes within a site It will be also difficult to manage the political conflict between these classes. Lynch and Hack argue that a designer, in this situation, will be forced to choose certain classes of users to whose requirements he/she most closely attend, but also he/she sho uld keep in mind to provide the minimum requirements of other groups. The designer's decision will be technical based on his/her past experience from other projec ts. According to Lynch and Hack, t his decision also will be influenced by the political and et hical forces 30 User analysis in Lynch and Hack's method, has five basic criteria : (1) h abitability or v ital s upport of the p lace (2) s ense (3) f it (4) a ccess and (5) c ontrol. According to Lynch and Hack, These criteria are the constant objectives that any design should aim at. Although some detailed specifications might vary from a site to another, the bas ic considerations are constant. 31 Habitability or Vital Support of the Place According to Lynch and Hack, any environment might be judged base d on its ability to support human vital function and 29 Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack, Site Planning (Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press, 1984). 30 Ibid. 31 Ibid.

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48 his /her body capability Although the client might be concerned with just the minimal standards of sensation and structural safety, a designer should carefully investigate different qualities of a site (such as diseases, air pollution, noise, poor climate, glare, dust, accidents contaminated water, toxic waste, or unnecessary stress), and discover biological and social threats that might affect a site and its us ers in the future. Sense When a place fit the human body structure and the way in which his mind works, Lynch and Hack describe this criterion as "the sense of a place". This criterion varies from a site to another based on the culture and personal experience. Lynch and Hack argue that there are regularities in how users perceive a place based on the structure of their senses and their brains. According to Lynch and Hack places shou ld have cl ear perceptual identity that is recognizable, memorable, vivid and engaging users' attention. 32 These sensuous characteristics are essential to achieve emotional security and a sense of self. Designers must understand the meanings and the values of a site to emphasize the identit y of the users of this site Designers need to carefully analyze the function, the social structure, economic and political patterns, and human value s in order to create meaningful place s Fit While sense is related to human values and meanings, human activities. During site analysis, a designer should investigate s users' activities and consider behavioral issues. Lynch and Hack state some questions that can help the designer to underst and any site in this context and make a good fit with user actions; "is there space to carry out that action? Is the site equipped and managed for it? Does the s e tting reinforce its mood and structure? Is there other room to pile the snow, enough 32 Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack, Site Planning (Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press, 1984).

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49 light to see by?" 33 A designer must know what people actual ly do and what their experiences and expe ctations are Ly nch and Hack recommend designer s rely on a systematic study of behavior, or even to invi te users of the site to participate in the decision process. 34 Access Lynch and Hack define access as "the degree to which users can reach other persons, services resources, information and places." 35 Based on user analysis, a designer must pay attention to various groups of users that will access a site, and he/she need s to investigate what are the consideration s of site users and their preferences New design can encourage communication or decrease it (in order to decrease the sense of safety, privacy and the prevention of conflictions ) Control Lynch and H ack argue that, in ideal situation s a site should be controlled by its users. However this is not the case in the real environment due the reality of power pattern and the absence of these users 36 Designers can en courage responsible control by the users of a site through design s In order to do that, designer s must understand existing conditions of the actual distribution of social and economic power. 37 Techniques of Analysis Lynch and Hack's approach provides different techniques that designers can use while investigating sites. Lynch and hack classified these methods into four groups based 33 Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack, Site Planning (Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press, 1984), 74. 34 Ibid. 35 Ibid, 75. 36 Ibid. 37 Ibid.

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50 on the ir approach and applications : (1) i nd irect o bservation (2) d irect o bservation (3) d irect c ommunication and (4) p articipant a nalysis. Lynch and Hack note that each method of site analysis has its particular cost and benefits. Based on the context, each of them can be relevant or irrelevant, practical or impra ctical and each of them inherent its own problems with ethics and power. Indirect Observation In this method of analysis, a designer can use some record of past behavior to explain the present and predict the future. 38 According to Lynch and Hack, this method is simple, economic and easy to control, but also extracting the imp lications of the data can be difficult too. This method is usually used if the design center is distant, the user is unknown, or the time and the budget does not allow for direct investigations. 39 Many resources are available for the indirect observation; past choices, precedents, arch ives, content analysis, traces and formal studies. The indirect observation method contains a whole set of techniques that can help designers investigat e a site. Th ese techniques include: analyzing past choices, precedent studies archives, c ontent analysis (such as newspapers radio, televisions... etc. ), t races (such as worn steps, oaths in the dirt, streaks and scratches on walls symbol displayed... etc. ) and f ormal studies Direct Observation Lynch and Hack consider this method as one of the richest sources for objective information during site analysis. 40 Data is gathered on a site from existing users. Data can be visual behavior or speech which can be record ed and 38 Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack, Site Planning (Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press, 1984). 39 Ibid, 80. 40 Ibid.

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51 documented using voice recorder, camera or even notebook. According to Lynch and Hack, b ehaviorists consider this method to be the only rel iable source of data. The two main limitations of this approach are : first, it contains a massive amount of data including irrelevant ones which make analyzing date tedious and may not lead to solid knowledge. Second, it does not give information about the "inner experience: the feelings, the images, attitudes, and values that accompany and motivate overt behavio r and give it human character." 41 Lynch and Hack advi s e designers to study site s in "two pronged" way s which are direct observation and behavioral observation. They argu e that when these two approaches are combined they will generate more reliable data that can explain how a site is functioning. 42 Direct observation reveals information b y analyzing different characteristics such as behavior setting, movement pattern, behavior circus, selected behavior an d experiments. Direct Communication Lynch and Hac k consider direct communication with the users of a site a s one of the most important source of data; it is not only analyzing what people do, but also how they feel, conceive and what they value. Although some responde n ts may, consciously and unconsciously, hide certain things, highlight others and refine their memories to accord with proper attitude, this method remains one of the most reliable and rich est sources of information. 43 In most situations it is hard to interview all the users of a site but there are some statistical considerations in choosing the sample depending on the purpose of the 41 Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack, Site Planning (Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press, 1984), 84. 42 Ibid. 43 Ibid.

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52 research. The research might be a quantitative research that targets a wide array of people, a nd this method is effective once the issues are clearly identified. On the other hand, a qualitative research, which can be done on a relatively small group, can conduct a in depth interviews that focus on crucial items that need to be explained in a compr ehensive manner. According to Lynch and Hack, descriptions of the daily life are relatively accurate Unlike the visual observations, interviews are centered on users and the purpose of the project. Some surveys ask the respondents to identify the problems they have with their environment and also to identify the good qualities of it. Respondents might be asked to respond graphically or verbally. They might be asked to draw some images to describe so me places or actions. According to Lunch and Hack, although these drawings might be simple and unprofessional, the y can rev eal a great deal of information 44 ( see f igur e 5 ) Respondents might be asked to describe their personal memories with the surrounding environment. According to Lynch and Hack, personal memories are rich of information early experience shape s present values ." 45 Lynch and Hack note that there is evidence that many people wish to replicate the setting of their childhood. Such 44 Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack, Site Planning (Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press, 1984). 45 Ibid, 97.

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53 Figure 5 : A sketch of a neighborhood street by a resid ent of San Francisco : Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack, Site Planning 1984. Participant Analysis In this method an investigator lives with a certain group and tries to make himself/herself as much a part of their community This approach is called the According to Lynch and Hack, t his approach helps a designer to understand "the underlying, inarticulate system of belief, the latent function and the hidden agendas." 46 Lynch and Hack note that this approach can be tricky; the designer will be insider and stranger at the same time. Although he/she shares intimacies with community members, he/she collects information that will be used by strangers. A designer might lose t rust with the community members. 47 Another inside self observation In this approach, existing users of the environment will be trained to apply the observation al techniques 46 Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack, Site Planning (Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press, 1984), 100. 47 Ibid.

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54 themselves. They will be in charge in analyzing their environment and configuring their surroundings. According to Lynch and Hack, self analysis is a new way of studying the relations between people and place This approach helps avoiding many political an d ethical considerations and also encourage s more participatory approach in design. 48 Other techniques can be applied in investigating sites. The choice of what the appropriate method to use according to Lynch and Hack, is related to the nature of sites and users. They note that each method of site analysis has its particular cost and benefits. Based on the context, each method can be relevant or irrelevant, practical or impractical and each of them inherits its own problems with ethics and power. 49 The S cientific Systematic Method Ian McHarg The Scientific Systematic Method is b ased on deconstructing the components of the environment into analytical layers to reduce the complexity of their relations. This approach allows designers to see each component (such as geology, hydrology, vegetation cover, surface waters, climatic conditions etc .) as individual to investigate its characteristics It also allows designers to investigate these components as connected part s of the whole system to understand their relations with each other McHarg suggests m easuring, m apping, m onitoring and m odeling major factor s of a local with different lenses and by different specialist s 50 This wide range of knowledge will allow designers to gain better understanding of how these components work McHarg's method proposes 48 Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack, Site Planning (Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press, 1984). 49 Ibid. 50 Ian McHarg, Design with Nature (New York: The Natural History Press, 1969).

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55 an integration of ecological knowledge into urban planning to emphasize the environmental awareness approach to land use. McHarg's method of site analysis reflects a scientific understanding of natural processes He argues that his metho d is rational and explicit that lead s to scientific conclusions. McHarg state s that the scientific understanding of natural processes can help designers navigate between different alternatives to effectively choose the most suitable plan for future development. 51 McHarg argues that his scientific method of site analysis transforms site components into systems that interact with each o ther to create the urban fabric s uch is the method a simple sequential examinatio n of the place in order to understand it. This understanding reveals the place as an i nteracting system, a storehouse and a value system." 52 McHarg's main argument in his method is that nature is a process that is interacting, that it responds to laws, representing values and opportunities for human use with certain limitations and even prohibitions to certain of these 53 N atural processes can be interpreted into a value system, and these values can be measured and weighted so they will have a rational r esponse to a social value system. McH arg's method aims at incorporating resource values, social values and esthetic values in addition to the normal engineering cogenerations abou t the physiographic criteria, "t he best route is the one that provides the m aximum social benefit at the least social cost." 54 51 Ian McHarg, Design with Nature (New York: The Natural History Press, 1969) 52 Ibid, 151. 53 Ibid. 54 Ibid 32.

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56 McH arg proposes a guideline for site analysis that can be applied to different projects with different scales and regions. This guideline has a systematic sequence that proposes a rational understanding ; (1) id entify (2) r ank (3) m ap and (4) e valuate. To clarify this method, let us use the process of selecting highway route s as McHarg describe s it First, a designer should identify the area of concern, and the major physical, natural and social processes. Traditional physiographic factors that are usually identified are: slope, surface drainage, soil drainage, bedrock foundation, soil foundation and erosive capacity. Natural categories that should be identified are: water values, forest values tidal inundation, wildlife values and scenic values Social categories that should be identified are: historic values recreational values, residential values, institutional values and land values All these factors should be photographed on a trans paren t print. Second, a designer should establish a value system to interpret the data. McHarg proposes three grades of value (using hierarchy color and tonal intensity) to represent these factors. For the physiographic values, a darker tone indicates gr e ater cost s For the natural and the social values, a darker tone indicates a higher value. Third, a designer maps the inter pretation values into a series of suitability maps. In this stage, the transparencies of physiographic factors will be layered with each o ther hysiographic o ( see f igure 6 ) Cultural and natural factor s will also be interpreted into a series of suitability maps Natural and cultural factors will be s oc ial v Fourth, a designer over hysiographic o s ocial v present the result of

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57 the gross shades of gray for all the possible factors, and evaluate possible alignments. After this systematic rational analysis, a des igner can get a map that shows r ecommended m inimal s ocial c ost a lignment ( see f igure 7 ) McHarg's method proposes an integration of ecological knowledge into urban planning to emphasize the environmental awareness approach to land use. He follows three guiding pr inciples of ecological planning: (1) d egree of c ompatibility: land use patterns that complement each other ( such as watershed protection and appropriate buffers ) will be given a higher value (2) o ptimize multiple land uses which aims at solving more than one problem with the same activity and (3) k now the physiographic regions such as place geology, hydrology and nat ive vegetation at the beginning of the planning process. 55 McHarg reflects this method on different locations. Although he uses different value systems for each site (based on the surrounding context), he still uses the same overlaying method for every site McHarg applied his analytical method on the existing open spaces in Philadelphia Metropolitan area. McHarg notes that this case study reveals the application of the ecological view to the problem of selecting open spaces in metropolitan regions. 56 He argu es that this model enhances the present mode of planning which ignores natural processes. McHarg selects eight dominant aspects of natural process and ranks them based on both value and intolerance to human use. These aspects are: (1) surface water (2) ma rshes (3) flood plains (4) aquifer recharge area, (5) aquifers (6) steep slopes, (7) 55 Ian McHarg, Design with Nature (New York: The Natural History Press, 1969), 144. 56 Ibid.

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58 forest and woodland, and (8) flat land. McHarg argues that reversing the order of these aspects will reflect the gross hierarchy of urban suitability 57 ( see f igure 8) Figure 6 : p hysiographic o Design with Nature 1969) 57 For more information about this case study refer to: Ian McHarg, Design with Nature (New York: The Natural History Press, 1969), 43 65.

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59 Figure 7 : The recommended minimal social cost a lignment: Ian McHarg, Design with 1969 McHarg suggests find ing discrete aspects of natural processes that carry their own values and prohibitions. According to McHarg, analyzing these aspects individually and using the overlay system

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60 lead s to informed decisions about the suitable land use. The understanding of these processes should draw the pattern for future development. Figure 8 : Summary ma p of water and land features for part of the metropolitan area : Ian McHarg, Design with Nature 1969 Another technique that McHarg uses to evaluate site analysis findings is an evaluation matrix. This matrix, according to McHarg, summarizes the inter compatibility of land use and it reflects the natural determinant for their occurrence and the outcomes

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61 of their operation. He argues that if the results of this matrix are applied, this will lead to the maximum potential conjunction of compatible land uses. This is the method by which the nature of the place may be learned. It is because... and so, it varies, it offers differ ent resources. The place must be understood to be used and managed well. This is the ecological planning method. 58 In his book, Design with Nature McHarg use s the Potomac River Basin as a case study to apply this approach of analysis. The value system th at he used for this particular case study includes: climate, geology (bedrock geology and historical geology), physiographic ( the Allegheny P lateau, the R idge and V alley P rovince, the Great Valley, the Blue Ridge, the P iedmont, and the C oastal P lain) hydrology, ground water, soil, plant association, wildlife, water problems, interpretation, mineral resources, slope, accessibility, water resources, and intrinsic suitabilities (agriculture, forestry, recreation and urban ) According to McHarg, this method gives a simple sequential examination that reflects a deep understanding of the place. This approach of understanding sites as interacting systems "a storehouse and a value system" help s in proposing potential land use as association between these v alues. McHarg argues that the ecological planning method is rational, explicit and will always lead to the same conclusion. I n Spirn addresses that this method was not used just to understand how different sites were formed but also to identify problems and potentials that might be ignored. McHarg method investigates how different sites function and evolve 58 Ian McHarg, Design with Nature (New York: The Natural History Press, 1969), 144.

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62 The Context Sensitive Method James A. LaGro The Context Sensitive Method 59 is a diagnostic process that identifies the opportunities and constraints for a specific land use program. It is systematic process which sits within a sequence of steps of sustainable development. These steps include programming site selection, site inventory (physical, biological and cultural ) site analysis, conceptual design, design developme nt, construction documentation and project implementation ( see f igure 9 ) The first three steps are interrelated and can function in rec iproci ty relations Figure 9 : Site planning and design process : James A. LaGro, Site Analysis: A Contextual Approach to Sustainable Land Plan ning and Site Design 2007 A context sensitive approach, according to LaGro, helps to protect public health, safety, and welfare. This approach acknowledges different issues of a site in order to avoid inherent site problems or constraints, and also to capitalize on inherent site assets or opportunities. 60 LaGro argues that his method of site analysis can limit long term 59 This method was labeled by its founder James LaGro. 60 James A LaGro, Site Analysis: A Contextual Approach to Sustainable Land Planning and Site Design Second Edition (Wiley, 2007).

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63 maintenance costs and reduce the risks to life and property from natural hazards. 61 LaGro's main goal from applying context sensitive approach is to create sustainable development that prote cts and celebrates each the ecological integrity and cultural heritage of a site According to LaGro, building sites are the smallest units in a broad range of spatial scales when performing site analyses. He states that the features of a site and the pro 62 LaGro classifies the contextual data sets of a site into three categories: physical, biol ogical, and cultural attributes ( see t able 3.2) In his position, these three attributes form a site and need to be considered in site analysis in order to create suitable and sustainable design. Table 3.2 : Examples of physical, biological, and cultural attributes that may be mapped at the site scale: James A. LaGro, Site Analysis: A Contextual Approach to Sustainable Land Pl anning and Site Design 2007 Ca te go r i es Sub c a te go r i es A ttr i bu te s P h y si cal S oils B e a r i n g ca p ac i t y P o r osi t y S t a bili t y E r odibili t y Fer tili t y A c idi t y ( p H ) Topo g r a p h y El e v a tion S lope Asp ect H y d r olo g y Su r f ac e d ra i n a ge W a t e r c h e m i s t r y De p t h t o se a s on a l w a t e r t a b le Aqui fe r r e c ha r g e a r eas Seeps a nd sp r in g s 61 James A LaGro, Site Analysis: A Contextual Approach to Sustainable Land Planning and Site Design Second Edition (Wiley, 2007). 62 Ibid.

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64 T a ble 3.2 c ont. Ca te go r i e s Sub c a te go r i e s A ttr i bu tes G e olo g y L a n d f o r ms S e ismi c h a z ar ds D e pth to b e d r o c k C lim a te S ol a r ac c e ss W ind s ( i. e ., p r e v a iling or wint er ) F o g p o c k e ts B iolo g i c a l V e g e t a tion P l a nt c ommuniti e s Spe c im e n t rees Exo t i c inv a si ve sp ec i es W ildli f e H a bit a ts f or e n d a n g e r e d or th rea t e n e d sp ec i es C ultu ra l La n d use P r ior l a nd use L a nd u s e on a djoini n g p r op er ti e s L e g a l P oliti ca l bound ar i e s L a nd o wn er ship L a nd u s e r e g u l a tions E a s e m e nts a nd d e e d r e st r i c tions Utiliti e s S a nit a r y s e w e r S to r m s e w er El ec t r ic G as W a t er T e l ec ommuni ca tions C i rc ul a tion S t ree t f un c tion (e g ., ar t e r i a l or c oll ec to r ) T r a ffic volume Histo r ic B uildin g s a nd l a ndm ar ks A r c h ae o l o g i c a l sit e s S e nso r y Visibili t y Visu a l qu a li t y Noise Odors LaGro divides site in vestigation into two main phases which are : s ite inventory and s ite a nalysis ( s uitability a nalysis) In the site inventory phase, a designer collects the physical, biological, and cultural data needed for this program driven analysis ( see f igure

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65 1 0 ) In the site analysis phase, a designer diagnoses and identifies the opportunities and constraints for a specific land use program ( see f igure 1 1 ) According to LaGro, t h e discovery of site constraints during the site analysis is a common reason for revising a Figure 1 0 : Site i nventory: James A. LaGro, Site Analysis: A Contextual Approach to Sustainable Land Pla nning and Site Design 2007 Figure 1 1 : Site a nalysis: James A. LaGro, Site Analysis: A Contextual Approach to Sustainable Land Pla nning and Site Design 2007

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66 Site Inventory The C ontext S ensitive M ethod requires an understanding of relevant site's contextual attributes. "Site inventory is a focused process of collecting and mapping essential attribute data." 63 As LaGro states, although one set of attribute data are needed to analyze a site for the suitability of p articular activity or land use, a different set of attributes will be required for other activities or uses. LaGro considers site inventory a fundamental step in understa nding the character of any site and its physical, biological, and cultural link s with the surrounding landscape. LaGro also addresses the importance of basic and applied research in understanding the physical, biological, and cultural phenomena. LaGro recommends that designers consider the following fo ur factors to help them decide w hich attributes to map and analyze, and which attributes to ignore: 1 Proposed site uses (for example, project program) 2 Existing on site and off site conditions 3 Requirements for permitting and approvals and 4 Costs of data collection and analysis. 64 LaGro argues that these four factors dictate the scope of a site inventory and analysis. He recommends that designers predefine the goals of the inventory to narrow the scope of data collection effort which can save vast amounts of time, money, and professional expertise. 63 James A LaGro, Site Analysis: A Contextual Approach to Sustainable Land Planning and Site Design Second Edition (Wiley, 2007), 102. 64 Ibid, 99.

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67 Physical Attributes A site inventory of physical attributes, a ccording to LaGro is driven by two main factors which are : the program of a project and the characteristics of a site Physical attributes on a site can have a broad impact on how a site is developed. These attributes and their implementations vary from a site to another or even from one season to another. They include parcel size and shape, topography (elevation, slop e, and aspect), ge ology, hydrology, soil, climate and natural hazards ( see t able 3.3) Table 3.3 : Selected physical factors to consider in site planning and design: James A. LaGro, Site Analysis: A Contextual Approach to Sustainable Land Planning and Site De sign 2007, 124. Ca te go r y A ttr i bu te L a n d U se S ig n i c a n c e H y d r olo g y D e pth to w a t e r t a ble S uit a bili t y f o r building f ound a tion e x ca v a tions S uit a bili t y f o r on site w a s t e w a t er t r ea tm e nt D r a i na ge p a tt er ns F lo od ing h a z ar ds S to r mw a t e r m a n a g e m e nt G r oundw a t e r r ec h a r g e G e olo g y D e pth to b e d r o ck S uit a bili t y f o r building f ound a tion e x ca v a tions S uit a bili t y f o r on site w a s t e w a t er t r ea tm e nt Fa ult lin e s E a r t hqu a ke h a z ar ds L a nd s lide h a z ar ds S oils pH P o r osi t y S t r u c tu r e a nd t e x tu r e P l a nt se l ec ti o n a nd g r ow t h S uit a bili t y f o r on site w a s t e w a t er t r ea tm e nt Ero s io n pot e nti a l Topo g r a p h y S lo p e g ra di e nt C i r c u l a t i on s y s t e m s afe t y B uilding d e s i gn a nd c o n s tru c tio n c ompl e x i t y Ero s io n pot e nti a l S to r m w a t er m a n a g e m e nt S lo p e a sp e ct Mi cr o c lim a te S uit a bili t y f o r sol a r a r c hit ec tu r e El e v a tion Visibili t y a nd visu a l qu a l i t y D r a i na ge p a tt er ns C lim a te W ind di rec tion L o c a t i on of outdoor ac ti v iti e s W i nd b r e a k lo c a tion S ol a r ac c e ss B uilding d e s i gn a nd pl ac e m e nt L o c a t i on of outdoor ac ti v iti e s

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68 LaGro states that site inventory maps are very useful in documenting the spatial distribution of a particular attribute. The physical attributes of a site such as vegetation or slope, are unevenly distributed over the landscape. Other attributes, such as average seasonal temperatures and precipitation, show very little spatial variation at the site scale ; but they can vary dramatically throughout the year. This temporal variation for instance, might influence the use of a site from season to another 65 Biological Attributes For LaGro, m apping the biological attributes in many sites is a crucial part of the site inventory. He considers landscape ecology as one of the most precious resources that provide a valuable conceptual framework for studying landsc apes and making environmental planning, restoration, and management decisions. LaGro states that understanding environmental quality is fundamental in site analysis due to the demands for acknowledging potential impacts of land development proposals on env ironment. LaGro states that protecting existing native vegetation a nd wildlife contributes to the unique sense of place of a site 66 Ecological community (habitat fragmentation, exotic species, and wetlands), trees and wildlife species are the most critica l biological attributes in addressing different issues and potential s of a site Trees, for example, can generate different ecological, economic, and social benefits; they provide shade and can reduce heating and cooling costs of nearby buildings. Accordin g to LaGro, existing trees on a site need to be protected during the construction of buildings, utilities, and other site structures. 67 Some 65 James A LaGro, Site Analysis: A Contextual Approach to Sustainable Land Planning and Site Design Second Edition (Wiley, 2007). 66 Ibid. 67 Ibid.

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69 construction impacts (such as soil compaction of the root zone, scraping the bark from trunks and branches, and grad ing within the root zone) might damage, kill, or lead to the slow demise of these trees Existing trees must be mapped during site analysis to avoid these situations. 68 Cultural Attributes The Context Sensitive Method includes different cultural context s that need to be acknowledged during site analysis. Historical, legal, aesthetic, and other socially significant attributes associated with land and landscapes are the main topics for this set of attributes. According to LaGro, understating these attribute s contributes in acknowledging the values and meanings of a site to create or maintain the Analyzing cultural attributes should include the followings : land use and tenure (such as prior and current land use and land ownership), land use regulations (such as federal and state regulations and local plans and regulations), property values, public infrastructure (such as circulation and utilities), b uilding and neighborhood characters, historic resources, and sensory perception (such as visi bility visua l quality and noise and odors). Land use controls, for example as LaGro notes, play a crucial role in limiting the range and intensities of permitted uses. Historic resources also can be significant design determinants if they are present on a site or adjacent to it. Visibility and visual quality also influence land use preferences and real estate va lue. 69 68 James A LaGro, Site Analysis: A Contextual Approach to Sustainable Land Planning and Site De sign Second Edition (Wiley, 2007). 69 Ibid.

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70 Site Analysis LaGro defines site analysis as "a diagnostic process that identifies the opportunities and constraints for a specific land use program." 70 He considers site analysis as an essential phase to the design of sustainable built environments. LaGro definition of the suitable design. A suitable design according to Steiner is "the process of determining the fitness, or the appropriateness, of a given trac t of land for a specified use." 71 LaGro summarizes that a suitable site for a particular land use is a site that accommodates the proposed development with the minimum amount of inputs or resources. Acco rding to LaGro, a suitability analysis involves the following three steps: 1 Identify suitability criteria for each anticipated land use 2 Collect and map t he relevant site attribute data, and 3 Identify and map the site locations with attribute values that meet the suitability crite ria for the targeted land uses. 72 LaGro argues that an important step in evaluating the suitability of a site for specific uses is the selection of attributes, sources of data, and suitability criteria. A designer should consider gathering relevance, reliable and available set of data that can help him /her evaluat e the suitability of a site. 70 James A LaGro Site Analysis: A Contextual Approach to Sustainable Land Planning and Site Design Second Edition (Wiley, 2007). 71 Frederick R. Steiner, The Living Landscape: An Ecological Approach to Landsca pe Planning (McGraw Hill College, 2000), 188. 72 Ibid, 173.

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71 Site attribute s anal ysis branches in to two main categories: (1) s ingle a ttribute a nalysis and (2) m u ltip le a ttribute a nalysis. Single a ttribute a nalysis is the analysis of an individual attribute layer. According to LaGro, this approach of analysis divides the spatial distrib ution of attribute values. It might have several objectives, but in many situations, the primary objective is to find locations that meet one or more specified attribute conditions. 73 This partitioning of attribute values can identity site areas that are ei ther: 1 Greater than a specified minimum (for example, elevations at least one meter above sea level); 2 Less than a specified maximum (for example, slopes less than 20 percent); or 3 Within a specified range (for example, slopes with southwestern, sout hern, or southeastern aspects). 74 Multiple a ttribute s a nalysis, on the other hand, involves overlaying two or more layers of attribute s ( see f igure 1 2 ) LaGro notes that the intersection and the union analyses are two of the most common and useful algebraic functio ns for analyzing multiple attribute layers. Site suitability analysis should address constraints and opportunities of a site. LaGro defines opportunities as "favorable, suitable, or advantageous locations on the site." 75 He also defines constraints as "loca tions that are unsuitable or restricted for a 73 James A LaGro, Site Analysis: A Contextual Approach to Sustainable Land Planning and Site Design Second Edition (Wiley, 2007). 74 Ibid, 174. 75 Ibid, 196.

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72 particular use." 76 Constraints like natural hazards are critical and affect the future of any project. Ignoring or discounting potential hazards can lead to expensive or even deadly disasters. Figure 1 2 : Overlay analysis using a linear combination approach: Source: Chrisman, copyrighte1997, p. 132, Figure 5 11. Reprinted by permission of John Wiley & Sons, Inc. As cited in James A LaGro Site Analysis: A Contextual Approach to Sustainable Land Planning and Site Design 2007. Site constraints analysis, in LaGro's method, also addresses the physiographic constraints. He states that these constraints can cause social and environmental impacts o n the project, and can also affect its functional or land use feasibility, and it will generate more financial requirements for construction, maintenance, and operation. A designer must be aware of these constraints and acknowledge them during site analysis in order to make a reason able decision about the feasibility of a project LaGro also discusses the importance of analyzing urban structure that the project will fit in. Analyzing pedestrian circulation for example, within and around a site should 76 James A LaGro, Site Analysis: A Contextual Approach to Sustainable Land Planning and Site Design Second Edition (Wiley, 2007), 196.

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73 identify potential entrance lo cations, and should also identify problems such as lack of walkway connectivity, (unfulfilled desire lines), inadequate capacity (congestion), conflicts among vehicles, bicycles, and pedestrians (safety hazards), lack of seating and ot her site furniture (a menities). 77 Constraints analysis might reflect urban streetscapes problems such as the lack of spatial enclosure, poor quality materials (such as paving and seating), lack of maintenance (such as curbs, walkways and plantings), no unifying design theme (s uch as materials, forms and proportions), insufficient or excessive lighting, and insufficient seating and other site furniture (such as signs and trash containers). 78 According to LaGro, site opportunities, such as natural features (water or landforms), landmark buildings or other significant cultural features, hav e social, economic, ecological and aesthetic value. He recommends designers acknowledge and integrate significant site amenities in their plans to help them in preserving the sense of place of a site and enhance the quality of life for future site users. LaGro argues that one of the most important objectives of site analysis is to discover the special, interesting, and valuable features of a site and its context. If a designer does not inves tigate a site within its context, many of the existing qualities, which reflect unique natural areas and culturally significant local places, might be overlooked. 79 77 James A LaGro, Site Analysis: A Contextual Approach to Sustainable Land Planning and Site Design Second Edition (Wiley, 2007). 78 Ibid. 79 Ibid.

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74 The Experiential Method Bernard Lassus and Richard Haag The Experiential Method translates the natural landscape into a poetical experience. Both Lassus 's approach and Haag 's approach in reading sit e s propose an innovative landscape methodology that aims at transforming the landscape design into a viable practi ce. Lassus argue s that a complementary perspective of discovering the physical and the sensual, the real and the imagined, and the external and the internal forces of a landscape is required to comprehensively understand the landscape and transform it in a way that respects places identities. 80 Lassus aims at reviving the sensual approach to its rightful place as means of knowing the landscape. He argues that the sensory approach that makes both nature and human nature visible is an indispensable way to reconcile science and the sensory word. In this app roach, Lassus suggests creating a harmonic balance between the nature of culture and the culture of nature. 81 La ssus considers landscape design as the set from which other site forces are determined rathe r than seeing landscape design as a set of requirements that have to meet the needs of other forces Lassus addresses the importance of acknowledging requirements that are related to the maintenance and enhancement of natural process but these requirements must serve the overall experience of landscape design. In The Sensual Landscape of Bernard Lassus Peter Jacobs discusses Lassus's method in approaching the opportunities and the challenges of a landscape. Lassus starts 80 Berna rd Lassus, the Landscape Approach (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania, 1998). 81 Ibid.

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75 analyzing a site with a programmatic perspective based on the qualities of a site and brief requirements of the project. Lassus develops a story that is derived from planning the activities and the ecological, economic and social processes of a site integrated into an overall scenario of landscape development. 82 Lassus's narrative approach is a unique approach that searches for strategies of visually rendering cultural forces that participated in forming the landscape. Lassus calls his method of i nventive a 83 His method consists of approaching a site in its singularity. He argues that in order to critically understand its structure including the hidden ones. He advises designers to visit a site at different times of the day, and under different circumstances. Multiple site visits will generate different views, stor ies and memories about a site. Lassus notes that a designer's main concern of visiting a site frequently should be to live a few moments by and with it in its shade and lights, to read and chat there." 84 A designer should also discover the discriminatory p oints of view in order to discover the micro scale of a site, and find the perspective that gather them in the image of a site. This step, according to Lassus, will 82 the Landscape Approach, by Bernard Lassus, Philadelphia : University of Pennsylvania, 1998. 83 Bernar d Lassus, the Landscape Approach (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania, 1998). 84 Ibid. 57.

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76 help a designer to identify and test the visual and tactica l scale in order to understand the memories, the localities the tales, the local legend, the stories and the history of a site 85 Lassus also recommends that designer s test new hypothes e s about the past, the present and the future of a site. He argues that this approach help designer s to imagine about the future formal organization of the site. Participatory experience for Lass u s, as Riley addresses, is the start, the essence and the end of any design; every design is purposed to structure, serve and enhance human experience. 86 Lassus use s of a person's reaction to, involvement in, a landscape, and involves all of the psychologically standard steps or states: perception, recognition, affect, evaluation ... on a fantasy and behavior." 87 Lassus distinguishes between the experience of someone who knows a site very well and between someone who visit s a site for the first time. Both persons give significant imagination about a site and both generate different approaches in understanding it On the other hand, each person will develop a unique set of images, st ories and memories. Lassus's approach is built from his feeling of landscape, his theoretical ideas about landscape and his passion for creating landscape that gives meanings and identities to places and to the activities of the people that dwell this landscape. He reads the sensual nature of a site such as its sounds, sights and smells and develops a series of experiments 85 Bernard Lassus, The Landscape Approach (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania, 1998). 86 Ibid. 87 The Landscape Approach, by Bernard Lassus, Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania, 1998, 9.

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77 with people and their relationships with the surrounding landscape. These experiments help Lassus in understanding a site with in it s visible and invisible forces. Accordi ng to Jacobs, one of the most known and elaborated experiment s that Lassus has conducted for many public sites. In 1971, for example, Lassus conducted this experiment in Kunstzone, Munich. He placed a three wall white stand and a long table stacked with two sets of papers; one set is photocopies of the experiment description, and the other set has sheets of drawing papers. In the center of each drawing paper Lassus printed an orange circle. Participants were aske d to draw with, on, from, against, around these circles, and then set these drawing on the walls beside each other The red dot was a symbol of the sun, tr affic sign, human face, etc ( see f igure 1 3 ) Lassus converts these drawing s of red dot s into two scales which are the visual scale and the tactical scale. The visual scale reflects a pattern of red dot that form a grid on a single sheet. On the other hand, the tactical scale is observed from the individual sheets that have been touched by every participant in the experim ent. 88 Lassus distinguishes between these two scales based on their meanings; the visual scale gives an integrative perception of the overall image, and the tactical scale gives the sensory knowledge of place derived by touch and smell. 89 According to Riley Lassus is one of few landscape architects who give the time a 88 in T he Landscape Approach by Bernard Lassus. 89 The Landscape Approach, by Bernard Lassus Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania, 1998.

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78 cinematic history of interventions and transformations past, present and future. 90 Lassus argues that the hi story and the present of the landscape will perpetuate the sensual approach of the future, "for Lassus, the more we know about the gardens of the past, the more we recognize their intimate within the poetical and cognitive concerns of their own day." 91 Ana lyzing existing sites, for Lassus, is to discover what qualities have been hidden by the erosion of time. Acknowledging these qualities and understanding the reasons for their disappearing is essential to create a design intervention that can be maintained for the future. 92 Similar to Lassus, Haag considers time as a powerful force that changes sites. He argues that in order to understand the landscape, a designer has to understand work and disposition of the nature. Haag's site analysis approach emphasizes the importance of spirit, feeling, direct contact with sites, and informed intuition. Haag's approach, according to Meyer, "opens up connection between both the environmental and cultural histories of a particular place Seattle and the Pacific Northwest a nd phenomenological response and ecological thinking." 93 Haag's approach in site analysis aims at getting the absolute dissolution and the very essence of a space to be able to manipulate it with minimum intervention and keep it 90 The Landscape Approach, edited by Bernard Lassus Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania, 1998. 91 The Landscape Approach (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania, 1998), 184. 92 Ibid. 93 Richard Haag Bloedel Reserve and Gas Works Park, edited by William S Saunders, Princeton Architectural Press; first edition,1998.

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79 as simple as it can be. He argues that life is very complicated, and gardens present anyone can fit himself/ herself into away from the pressure of modern life style. Figure 1 3 : The R ed D ot E xperiment: Bernard Lassus T he Landscape Approach 1998.

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80 According to Haag, design intervention can come fro m altering or adjusting the existing conditio ns of a site editing, removing, managing or gently shaping the landscape. 94 He always starts his site exploration by looking for the most sacred and iconic condition or context about the site. goal is not to ignore site's history but to save it, preserve it and adaptively use it again. In the site analysis of Gas Work Park in Seattle for example, Haag was looking for the most significant iconic component of the site, and he eventually concluded that the remains of the industrial plant are the most powerful icon with its historical heritage among other context s Haag refused to destroy the remains of the industrial plant and he used these remains to reflect his adaptive reuse approach. He argues that a designer should not ignore existing challenges in a site or even eliminate them from intervention plans. Haag's unique intervention of the site of Gas Work Park makes this site one of the most famous and appreciated landscape in the United States. Haag's intervention also continues to influence many landscape a rchite ct s to face different conditions and challenges of a site Haag main argument about analyzing sites is that a designer should create relations with the natural processes within the complex narratives of the site Haag believes that the complexity of the existing landscape provides a good resource to learn from site history which can draw its potential futures. Haag's selective editing involves the landscape to involve in a dialogue with its users to make them understand its history of disturbance 94 Richard Haag Bloedel Re serve and Gas Works Park, edited by William S Saunders, Princeton Architectural Press; first edition,1998.

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81 Summary This research acknowledges the significance of the discussed methods but it also points at some of their limitations and biases that limit their abilities in giving a comprehensive site analysis. The T echnical M ethod of site analysis by Kevin Ly nch and Gary Hack focuses on the purely formal, visual, and the aesthetic qualities of landscape. This method of site analysis has two main branches; s ite a nalysis and u ser a nalysis. method relies on the relation between the natural catego Technical M ethod is accessible for the majority of users (students, architects, planners, ecologists etc. ); it invites different community members to participate in the developmental process. The Technical M ethod can be understood in direct and non symbolic approach, and therefore unambiguous and unguarded terms. Lynch and Hack's method is technical A lthough it presents a significant set of concepts and techniques that help in revealing great d eal of knowledge about sites Lynch and Hack briefly mention the underlying values of a site, and they do not explore these values in depth T hey also do not discuss the importance of these values in forming communities. The Scientific Systematic Method of site analysis by Ian McHarg focuses on the relation between man and nature. It proposes a rational scientific understanding of natural processes. McHarg's method aims at incorporat ing resource values, social values and esthetic values in additi on to the normal engineering considerations a bout the physiographic criteria The Scientific Systematic M ethod proposes an integration of ecological knowledge into urban planning to emphasize the environmental awareness

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82 approach. Although many researchers note that McHarg gives equal ly weighted variables for the different values (natural, physiographical, and social values), McHarg recommend s that during the inventory of a site a designer should try not emphasize one aspect of a site over the others. A designer should report and investigate most of the components of a site with the same underlying values. When a designer starts to analyze the data that he/she mapped a new layer of values should appear in judging and interpreting these data. McHarg clearly distinguishes between the collecti on of data and between interpreting the relevant data. McHarg's method has been criticized by some landscape architects because it gives more weight to science rather than intu ition. Others argue that it would be expensive to generate this analytical process in many professional projects ; especially for urban planning projects. 95 McHarg 's method is more oriented toward large scale site analysis A lthough his ideas can be reflected on small scale sites, it would be hard very expensive, or even unnecessary to apply his techniques. The Context Sensitive Method by James LaGro is a diagnostic process that identifies the opportunities and constraints for a specific land use p rogram It aims at avoiding inherent site problems or constraints, and also to cap italize on inherent site assets or opportunities. LaGro's goal from applying context sensitive approach is to create sustainable development that protects and celebrates the ecological integrity and the cultural heritage of a site 95 Environmentalism in Landscape Arch itecture, edited by Michel Conan, Washington, D.C.: Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, 2000.

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83 LaGro approaches site analysis from a diagnostic perspective that evaluates a site for future suitability and sustainability. Although the meanings and the values of a site are crucial for the sui tability and the sustainability of any project, LaGro discusses the tangible forces of culture and does not dig deep to understand underlying values. The Experiential Method presented both in Lassus's and Haag's approaches o f site analysis propose s an innovative landscape methodology that aims at transforming the landscape design into a viable practice Lassus's approach is flexible; "He offers no rules, no easy credit, certainly no stylistic convention, but rather exploration, journeys for uncertai n destination, into the nature of the landscape experience." 96 Lassus refuses to deal with the landscape with just its components; he points at the pleasure in its mystery, incongruous and critical aspects. Although Lassus addresses the importance of othe r considerations (such as the ecological environmental confederations) in site analysis he did not discuss them in the sense of his approach. Haag's approach connects both the environmental and cultural histories of a particular place and phenomenologic al response with ecological thinking He influences designer s to try to transform the limitations of a site into future potentials that can make their designs significant with minimal disturbance to the landscape. The Experiential Method adds a new dimension to the understanding of the landscape; it translates the natural landscape into a poetical experience. Although Lassus and Haag acknowled ge the importance in analyzing the environmental and the physical attribute of a site they did not discuss t hem in cooperation with their ideas. It might be hard for a designer to compromise between these aspects of perceiving a site. This 96 The Landscape Approach, by Bernard Lassus, Philadelphia: University of Penn sylvania, 1998), 9.

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84 conflict can create unsettle d ground that might force a designer to choose between their method and traditional site analysi s methods. All of the previous methods are significant ; they all address critical aspects of the notion of a site and approach site analysis from diffe rent perspectives. They all aim at getting the most valuable information that enriches design process toward the most suitable design. They all recommend engaging surrounding context (social, historical, envir onmental, and economical etc. ) in acknowled ging a site and its characteristic s and they all argue that a site cannot be understood in isolation. Although each of the se methods has a set of values that they argue a designer should cover the values and their meanings vary from one method to another t hese methods are oriented toward different scales of sites. The Scientific Systematic M ethod targets regional planning projects and it would be unsuitable for small scale site analysis. The Technical Method focuses more on the neighborhood scale of a site and analyzes it within the neighboring context. The Context Sensitive Method navigates between different scales but mainly focuses on the neighborhood scale and the site specific scale. The Experiential Method is a site specific method that focuses on the existing icon ic qualities of the site itself and the identity and the sense of the place ( s ee t he m atrix of the d ifferent v alue s ystems proposed by each m ethod). One of the most significant difference s among these methods is the role of the designer within the site analysis phase The Scientific Systematic Method tends to applied by different researcher s and will always lead to the same conclusion. 97 While the 97 Ian McHarg, Design with Nature (New York: The Natural History Press, 1969).

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85 Experiential Method acknowledges and emphasizes that each designer acts as a filter and embraces his/her unique ideas about the same site. Each method has its own vocabulary, or even use s a similar term in various ways. LaGro for example, uses t in a very practical term that addresses how a sustainable design can reduce the cost of maintaining site and create better environment. On the other hand, suitable design for Haag is a design that maintains nature and human values from the past and the present to the future. It is crucial to achieve the goals of this thesis to acknowledge the inherent biases of each method to critically understand, analyze, and evaluate them, and also to be aware of these biases while using the concepts, the applicatio ns, and the techniques proposed by these methods. The biases of these methods can be understood from different perspectives. One way for analyzing their biases is to understand who benefits the most from these methods and concepts of the site analysis proc ess. In other words, who are the audience and the clients (developers, landscape architects, the existing or the future users of a site, etc.) that are targeted by the proponents of these methods? The Technical Method by Lynch and Hack and the Context Sensitive Method by LaGro seem to be more oriented toward serving the goal s of developer s and finding solutions and opportunities to minimize the cost in constructing projects and minimize the future maintenance costs. Although these two methods ge nerate site analysis in order to find the best site for the best use, the criteria for the best site and the best use will be stated by developers not by the existing or the future users of a site. S uitable outcomes for Lunch, Hack and LaGro would be a des ign that meets the requirements of a developer or a client.

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86

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87 The Scientific Systematic Method by McHarg is an idealistic method that is concerned about the environment and what is suitable use that would serve the environmental qualities. McHarg's method of site analysis reflects a scientific understanding of natural processes. McHarg states that the scientific understanding of natural processes can help d esigners navigate between different alternatives to effectively choose the most suitable plan for fut ure development. 98 McHarg argues that his scientific method of site analysis transforms site components into systems that interact with each other to create the urban fabric. Lassus and Haag try to serve the artistic version of landscape. They both try to get the essence of a site. The suitable outcomes for Lassus and Haag are more personal and focus more on how people recognize the experiential quality of a site. Lassus and Ha ag privilege the individual experience of the place over the satisfactory contextual quality; a context for Lassus and Haag is a linkage of ideas rather a physical context or geospatial context. Another significant differentiation between the methods is t he set of techniques and their implementations. Although on site exploration, for example, is a common technique between these methods, it differs in how it is applied from one method to another. Site visits in the Technical Method and the Experiential Met hod is an act that will be more useful if it is done without having any preconceived notions about the future use of a site. This approach leads to uncover ing more issues and to minimize the chance of ignoring some crucial information. On the other hand, t he Scientific Systematic Method and the Context Sensitive Method consider site exploration as a program driven 98 Ian McHarg, Design with Nature (New York: The Natural History Press, 1969).

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88 act that orients the site analysis approach, and should be purpose ful ly made for the suitability of a site to a particular development. Matrix 2: The Matrix of the Different Techniques Proposed by each Method The Methods Techniques Floating Attention On Site Exploration Participatory Experience Mapping Diagrams Remote Sensing Field Survey Interviews Precedents Narrative The Technical The Scientific Systematic The Context Sensitive The Experiential Having these differences in analyzing a site among these methods allow exploring site s from different perspectives and different angles. It also gives students a wide spectrum of tools and vocabulary that allow them navigate through their own value system, and, in some situations, to creat e a hybrid method by overlaying these methods to get the most useful tools of them to achieve the most comprehensive reading of a site. It is useful for students to understand these methods, their overlap ping and their conflicts to increase the students' ability to decide w hich method to use, how to use it and in what particular context. It is very critical for students to understand what is missing in each method and the inherent biases of each

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89 This research labels these methods based on their techniques and concepts. O t her labeling systems can be used in addressing these methods approaches. For example, the Scientific Systematic Method and the Context Sensitive Method are diagnostic methods that aim at evaluating the site in term of its performance. On the other hand, the Technical Method is a descriptive method that re acknowledge s what is already known. And the Experiential Method is an interventionist method that emphasize s the designer role in understanding and transforming a site. These methods give critical ideas, techniques, and tools that can help students in reading site s with different lenses. T he next chapter presents different teaching methodologies and tools of discovery that can help instructors and students investigat e sites. Chapter Four will also, briefly, acknowledge biases of instructors and students as one of the most critical issues facing students and instructors during the site analysis phase which influence their judgments about the site

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90 CHAPTER IV THE TEACHING OF SITE ANALYSIS This thesis aims at establishing a teaching fr amework that can help students read sites in dept h and understand different components of a site in a comprehensive manner. The previous chapters discuss ed the theoretical background of issues related to the term s site and site analysis how they are approached from different perspective s This chapte r discuss es different teaching methods that can enhance students' learning and t ools of d students investigating sites. T his chapter also briefly acknowledge s both instructors' biases and students' biases as one of the most critical issues faci ng students and instructors during the site analysis phase ; which influence their judgments about the site Acknowledging biases will allow students develop their critical thinking skills and a self awareness of the role as individuals play during the site analysis process. Teaching Methods Landscape architecture is a field of p rofessional activity and it is also an academic discipline. Landscape architecture combines science, theory and practice. This allows diff erent teaching methods to take place in the teaching of site analysis. Since this thesis proposes a course for teach ing site analysis (which is more likely to gather architect s landscape architects, and urban planners in the same class ) a strong interdisciplinary philosophy is required in designing this course Various teaching methods are used in teaching landscape a rchitecture ; but this chapter will focus on some of the methods (such as brainstorming, f ield trips, and c ase s tud ies ) that are more related to the teaching of site analysis.

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91 Brainstorming B rainstorming is used frequently in the design field. It focuses on a particular topic within a limited time frame. Although brainstorming might be generated individually, it is more e ffective if an instructor applies it as a group task. This method is usua lly used to solve problems and to find new and creative approaches to unsatisfactory or inefficient procedures or systems. 1 Brainstorming can be applied by forming different group s of students and giving them a particular issue to find quick solutions or ideas. This approach encourages students to present the ir instant ideas that come immediately after getting the issue Students' ideas generated from the brain storming work as catalysts for new responses. Applying this method within a group leads to more c reative and effective discussions that result in more critical and successful solutions and interventions. Brainstorming, according to Rita S. Dunn, and Kenneth J. Dunn provides varied instructional approach es that encourage students (from different skills and abilities) to participate in the group conversation s Dunn and Dunn argue that this method can p romote the spontaneity and the creativity of each group as well as of each member within the same group ; e ach member of the group begins to link his/her ideas with other group member's ideas and generate a new set of more comprehensive ideas and suggestions in an efficient and productive manner 2 Brainstorming p rovides ideas that can be effectively used as a base for the entire project. 1 Rita, S. Dunn, and Kenneth J. Dunn Approaches to Individualizing Instruction: Contracts and Other Effective Teaching Strategies (New York: Parker Publishing Company, Inc., 1972). 2 Ibid.

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92 Field Trips Field t rips is a common learning method that require s students to use the theoretical knowledge taught during lectures and to app ly methods and techniques present ed during class exercises. Lynch and Hack consider this method as one of the richest sources for objective information during site analysis. 3 Data gathered during site visit are based on personal experience. Students and their instructor can spend some time on a site trying to conceptualize different issues, qualities and factors. Data can also be gathered on a site from existing users. Data can be visual behavior or verbal which can be recorded and documented using voice recorder, camera or even notebook. Lassus notes that this method can app roach a site in its singularity. He argues that in order to critically understand a site and its qualities, a designer should visit a site with a in order to understand its structure including the hidden ones. He advises designers to visit a site at different times of the day and under different circumstances. Multiple site visits will generate different views, stories and memories about a site. Lassus notes that a main concern for a designer from visiting a site frequently should be "to live a few moments by and with it in its shade, and lights, to read and chat there." 4 A designer should also discover the discriminatory points of view in order to discover the micro scale of a site and find the perspective that ga ther s them in the image of a site. This step, according to Lassus, will help a designer identify and test the visual and tactical scale in 3 Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack, Site Planning (Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press, 1984). 4 Bernard Lassus T he Landscape Approach (University of Pennsylvania, 1998), 57.

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93 order to understand the memories, the localities, the tales, the local legend, the stories, and the history of a site 5 Case Stud ies Case studies are used in many professions ; they present the collective record of the progress and the development of information and knowledge in landscape architecture. Mark Francis defines a case study as a well documented and systema tic examination of the process, decision making and outcomes of a project that is undertak en for the purpose of informing future practice, policy, theory and/or education. 6 Case studies is a well established research method; it typically utilizes a variety of research methods such as experimental, quasi experimental, and historical analysis methods. According to Francis, c ase studies are useful because they can provide practical informati on on potential solutions to different issues C ase studies are also effective for developing problem solving skills and useful evaluation strategies Francis considers case studies a s a valuable way to build a body o f criticism and critical theory 7 In the site analysis process, case studies can open different perspectives in reading a site that can help designers to analyze and evaluate the qualities of a site in reference to previous experiences and approved knowledge. There are multiple methods an instructor can use to teach site analysis ; each method generates different techniques, skills and knowledge. The most important goal in selecting among these methods can be used to encourage students to be active members 5 Bernard Lassus the Landscape Approach (University of Pennsylvania, 1998) 6 Mark Francis, Case Study Method for Landscape Architecture (Washington, D.C.: Landscape Architecture Foundation, 1999), 9. 7 Ibid.

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94 in the teaching process Engaging students in active learning allow s them to bring their experiences and knowledge to the classroom discourse Tools of Discovery Landscape architects use different tools during site analysis that can help them understand the surrounding factors a nd conditions These tools can help a designer uncover what already exists and generate new ideas and knowledge about a site. These tools (such as diagrams, maps, d igital imagery audio/video r ecording s a udible and visual m edia and h uman b ody and s enses ) can also play a significant role in documenting, communicating and reflecting designer s' creative thinking. Diagrams Diagram ming is a useful tool in represent ing spatial and physical relationships The main purpose of a diagram is to transform a complex idea into a simple and powerful visual statement. Diagrams can analyze different issues on different scales F igure/ground diagrams for example, generate urban scale analysis, nodes and landmarks diagrams generate a neighborhood scale analysis, and site materials and site axes diagrams generate a site specific scale analysis ( see f igure 1 4 ) Maps One of the main tools that landscape architect s use are maps. Maps can help an investigator gain a better understanding of a site on different scales and for different qualities Maps can give designers a power to control the scale and investigate a site in a comprehensive manner. Maps (such as political maps, historical maps, topographic maps, climate maps, economic or re source maps and t hematic m ap s ) can uncover what an

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95 investigator cannot see during the site visit, and they are rooted in and essential to power and knowledge. 8 Figure 14 : Different diagramming scales to explain different site's qualities : Gordon Cullen, The C oncise Townscape 2009. Mapping is a common technology and language that different disciplines use and read. Thompson Waterman states that t hese days, maps have become more accurate and rich in information that can reflect different layers of discovery apping shows not only what exists, but also what possibilities exist. They offer a way of testing different possibilities for design 9 Mapping is a wide and rich science. It would be hard to cover all the mapping techniques and tools in this section. Therefore, t his section will focus on two well k nown and used mapping technique s called m ental m g eographic i nformation s ystems ( GIS ) m These two techniques of mapping vary between each other in their 8 Brian Harley, "Maps, Knowledge, and Power," in the Iconography of Landscape edited by Den is Cos grove and Stephen Daniels, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1988 ) 9 Thompson Waterman, T he Fundamental of Landscape Architecture (Fairchild Books, 2009), 57.

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96 complexity, applications, and purposes. Mental maps and GIS maps are used in different scales different context and for different information sets Mental m aps Mental m ap s are one of the first maps that people used to locate themselves in some place i n the city Mental mapping is a simple technique that allows designer to draw his/her initial understanding of a site. These maps are based on a designer perception and feeling about a place ( see f igure 1 5 ) Mental maps reflect a designer understanding of a site and his/her way of interacting and dialoguing with different forces and components of a site Information from mental maps can address circulation routes, human behavior, site context, events and other site specific qualities. Figure 15 : M ental m ap : P roblems of the Boston image. Kevin Lynch The Image of the Cit, 1960. In T he Image of the City Lynch focuses on the power of mental maps as a tool for discovering a place. The m ental map is an image held by an individual reflecting his/her

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97 way of remembering a place. 10 A designer can use this map to help him/her recall information or even memories; mental maps are the him/herself in the context. A good mental map can create a harmonious relation between a site and a designer which will enrich his/her on site experience. Although the technology in creating maps has been evolved very significantly, mental maps remain one of the most useful methods in re discovering a site. Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Maps GIS is one of the most useful tools in mapping different attributes of a site GIS maps represent logical collections of individual features with their g eographic locations and shapes in addition to descriptive information about ea ch feature stored as attributes ( see f igure 1 6 ) B usinesses, governments, educators and scientists, environmental and conservation organizations, natural resource groups, and uti lities benefit from using GIS. GIS combines software, hardware and information for analyzing, managing and recording all geographical forms to set reference information. GIS is a useful to ol in organizing large amount of data into special maps and tables supporting the strategic decision making process. GIS allows designers view, understand, question, interpret, and visualize data in many ways that reveal relations, patterns, and trends in the form of maps, globes, reports, and charts. 11 GIS maps can be very accurate and subjective, and a designer does not have any personal inputs in formulating these maps. GIS maps can generate science based knowledge that can be used to support an argument and to understand social and 10 Kevin Lynch. The Image of the City (Cambridge Massachusetts: MIT Press, 1960). 11 RUP Data Solutions. Accessed March 23, 2013 http://www.rupdata.com/Geographic_Information_System.html

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98 environmental issues. Inform ation from GIS maps can address environmental issues, ecological information, natural and physical qualities, and social structures. However, GIS may appear subjective but designers must be reflective on what information they select and how it is to be use d. Figure 16 : GIS map for the recreational facilities at Globeville and Elyria Swansea Denver. Digital imagery Landscape architects rely on digital imagery during site analysis because it provides much of the site documentation and it can save moments details or even time. Photography can help a designer in reading site s at two levels At the ground level they

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99 understand the human experience of the landscape at the scale of walking At the sky level such as the a erial photography different details that might be unseen at ground level can be revealed Spirn considers photography a s a powerful tool that can be used for various issues during the design process, p hotography can be a way of thinking about landscape, a means to read a landscape, to disco ver display processes and interactions, and to map out the structure of ideas." 12 Audio/Video Recording s A designer can use audio and video recording s as a tool for documenting certain events, actions and be haviors. R ecording is helpful when conducting inte rviews with site users. Site users might share their feelings, memories, needs and expectations about a site. Audio and video recording s allow a designer to revisit and reread data. They a lso give a livable image about a site within a particular time frame or event. Audible and V isual M edia According to Lynch and Hack, n ewspapers, radio, television, novels, paintings, popular songs, political speech and advertisements can be helpful in understanding a site; these tools record images and positions about the environment and the culture of a site in a certain period 13 Although audible and visual media can provide different information about different issues different scales and different urban and social s e tting s a designer must be aware of the contexts and the biases of the generator of a particular media. Narrative s 12 Anne Whiston Spirn, Reading and Telling Landscape: Photography as a Tool of Discovery and Design 13 Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack, Site Planning (Cambridge, M assachusetts: MIT Press, 1984).

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100 Narratives help designers express their site reading in a condensed way. If a designer uses narrative s as a tool in discovering and documenting a site, he/she will engage his/her personal experience, feelings and perception s Although narratives can be a poetical tool to talk about a site including some sensual qualities, it might reveal less explicit inf ormation that cannot be understood by some readers with different knowledge and backgrounds. Human Body and Senses The h uman body and senses are powerful tool s that can help a student understand a site A student can use his/her body as a mean for measuring a site and its components ( see f igure 1 5 ) A student should know for example his/ her standing height, standing eye height, height to shoulders, seated height, seated eye height, back of knee down to back of foot, legs: hips to floor, arm span: lateral reach, tip to tip of fingers arm overhead: floor to tip of finger, forward r each: shoulder to tip of finger elbow to tip of fingers, length of hand, width of hand one inch on hand length of foot and his/ her pace It is important for students to understand the dimensions and proportions of the human body in order to de sign public and private spaces that respect human convenience, comfort and satisfaction. In addition, t his technique helps students think about the different people who will be using these spaces Human senses, as well, are essential tools for a designer when reading sites. Human senses can assist a designer in understanding the visual and the sensual qualities of a site such as light and shadow, smell, sounds, and texture. In the Islamic landscape design, for example, creating a dialogue between human senses and the landscape is the essential goal of any design. When a designer uses his/her senses in understanding a site

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101 he/she start s to develop a sensual relation that links him/her to the site. Thi s unique sensual relation can lead to a better understanding of the underlying forces and values of a site, and also can create new opportunities to discover some qualities that cannot be seen or evaluated by using traditional tools. Figure 1 5 : Le Modul ar, Le Corbusier, 1948 Different tools should be selected and used with awareness of the different purposes or situations. A site, a designer and resources (such as budget, time and avail ability) can determine what tools can be used in investigating sites. It is useful for students to demonstrate a good knowledge about the tools that are available, where to use them and in what particular context. All these tools and others such as drawings, matrices and hand sketching can help student s explore, rea d and document sites in a comprehensive manner

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102 Understanding Biases Understanding biases is one of the most critical issues that face s students during the site analysis phase which can affect their judgments related to a site. Instructors and students are human s ; they have their own beliefs and values. They must be aware of the ir cultural and societal biases about certain groups or certain issues about a site. Their self awareness will promote the educational experience and eventually enhance student s' learning s elf awareness plays a prominent role in the development of cultural competence, improving classroom dynamics, and the results of classroom discussions." 14 According to Maribel V. Bird, if i nstructors and students are aware about their own biases they will be more open and receptive to different positions 15 The self awareness of different biases from i nstructors and students will generate a productive con v er s ation that aims at generating the most useful outcomes during the site analysis pha se Empowering Education: Critical Teaching for Social C hange personalities have been shaped through their personal experiences. Instructors (consciously or unconsciously) reflect their past influences, values, and traditions inhe rent to their cultures 16 Bird also argues that an instructor who recognizes his/her own biases will be able to approach ideas and argument s from different angles which in turn will encourage students to think more critically and have more valuable conversa tions. 14 Evaluation as a An alytic Teaching and P hilosophical P raxis Vol. 32 Issue 1, 18. 15 Ibid. 16 Ira Shor, Empowering E ducation: Critical T eaching for S ocial C hange (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1992).

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103 On the other hand, an instructor must be aware of the biases of his/her students Bird notes that understanding different biases generated by students will turn the classroom into inclusive discourse that discusses different topics that are relevant to student's value systems. 17 Bird proposes two techniques to minimize the effects of the biases of an instructor during the teaching process. For Bird, instructors should teach out of the ir comfort zone, and second they should consider themselves as learner s equally to their students Bird argues that an instructor, in general, is more open to discuss, argue and question if he/she Teaching out of the ir comfort zone, according to Bird, could become the best opportunity for a n instructor to make some adjustments to remove the discomfort which will require an instructor to modify or change behavior or even to gather knowledge or rationalization instead of taki ng a defensive position "teachers should be open to their own transformations by challenging their own biases and assumptions." 18 Another technique that Bird proposes is that an instructor consider s himself/herself a s a learne r equal ly to his/her students. This technique encourage s students to be active membe rs in the teaching process. If students are engaged in the teaching process they will bring their experiences and knowledge to the classroom discourse. This interactive teaching met hod eliminate s the possibility of generating 17 Ira Shor, Empowering E ducation: Critical T eaching for S ocial C hange (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1992). 18 Brian Harley, "Maps, Knowledge, and Power," in Denis Cosgrove and Stephen Daniels (eds.) T he Iconography of Landscape (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1988).

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104 passive learning 19 Creating connections between an instructor and his/her students benefit both the instructor and the st udents; i t potentially reveal s a higher level of engagement and much more meaningful interaction. 20 The proposed site analysis course presented in Chapter Five targets first year students in architecture landscape architecture and urban planning programs. As Bird notes, first year students arrive at the environment of a university with existing set of biases; students come with preconce ptions, prejudices, assumptions and expectations. In the teaching of site analysis, are very common. Site analysis combin es instructor biases, students' biases, and the inher ent biases of the method of site analysis. The instructor and the students must be aware of these different biases in order to evaluate site issues in a critical manner. An active dialogue between studen ts and their instructor minimize s the effects of different biases and open s new perspectives in approaching site issues. Summ a ry Different methods can take place in teaching site analysis in order to enhance students' learning experience ; each method generates different techniques, skills and knowledge. As well, d ifferent tools can be used for different purposes or situations. A site, a designer and resources (such as budget, time and availability) can determine the most effective tools that can be used in investigating sites. It is useful for students to 19 According to Bird, passive learning is a direct result of not engaging students in the classroom discourse. The students are not actually learning but collecting information that most likely will never be critically analyzed, but simply used again in the s ame form and shape as it was originally received from the instructor 20 Evaluation as a P hilosophical P raxis, Vol. 32 Issue 1, 18.

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105 demonstrate a good knowledge about the available tools, where to use them and in what particular context. The most important goal of choosing among different methods and techniques is to encourag e students to be positive members in the teaching process to allow them bring their experiences and knowledge to the classroom discourse. This chapter also acknowledges the biases of instructors and students as one of the most critical issues students face during the site analysis phase which can affect their judgments about the site. The instructor and the students must be aware of these different biases in order to evaluate site issues in a critical manner. This self awareness generate s an active dialogue between st udents and their instructor minimize s the effects of different biases and open new perspectives in approaching site issues. Acknowledging this issue their critical thinking skills. Chapter Fi ve, will use all the information discussed in the previous chapter s to establish a framework for teaching site analysis that assist s students in understanding how to read sites in a comprehensive manner

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106 CHAPTER V THE PROPOSED FRAMEWO RK FOR TEACHING SITE AN ALYSIS This chapter proposes a framework for teaching site analysis which is based on the theories, the methods, and the tools of discovery presented i n the previous chapters. The proposed teaching framework will be the structure for develop ing a course for teaching site analysis for first year student s in architecture, landscape architecture and urban planning programs The propos ed framework reflects the interaction between the knowledge generated from the methodologies of site analysis presented in chapter three and the experience generated by applying and using the teaching method s and the tools of discovery presented in chapter four. This framework represents an integrative method that combines the experience based methods of on si te exploration and the academic methods of the evaluation and the documentation of sites. The Concept of the Teaching Framework The concept of the framework follows Christophe Girot 's concepts of reading the landscape presented in The Four Trace Concepts in Landscape Architecture Girot's framework consists of four operating concepts which he calls These concepts are l a nding, g rounding, finding and f ounding. Girot argues that these concepts help designers have better understan ding of the surrounding context; these concepts are clustered around issues of memory: marking, impressing and founding. 1 According to Girot, e ach concept of the f our trace c oncepts focuses on a particular of discovery inquiry, and resolution, and each concept requires specific 1 Christopher Girot, T he Four Trace Concepts in Landscape Architecture (New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 1999).

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107 attitude and action. Girot argue s th at to achieve the comprehensive understanding of any site, t he Four Trace Concepts should be followed in the same order. Girot note s that this highly intuitive approach will enrich the ability of a designer to combine t he physical experiences with the local research. Landing is the first moment when a designer arrives at a site; it is the first act of reading a site Landing describes the very first moment when a designer is transferred from the unknown to the known. Landing only occurs once and requires a particular state of mind. Girot encourages designers to land on a site with a complete sense of Girot notes that every single detail in a site is very important and nothing is allowed to be considered to be obvious or neutra l. According to Girot, t he sense of landing is personal; a designer's initial landing draws impressions and insights that will stay with him/her th rough the whole design process. 2 Grounding, the second step in reading a site, is less personal and relate s to the car e ful research and analysis. A designer starts to understand a site by overlaying different analytical layers and recognizing the visible and the invisible forces. When g rounding a desig ner investigate s a site from different angles and uses different lenses. Grounding is when a designer starts collect ing the required data (different environmental, social, and cultural attributes) and examining, mapping and evaluating different aspects of a site. Grounding can occur several times during the reading of a site (depending on the required information as a designer progress in his/her investigation of a site), and in each time it can reveal a new set of info rmation. 2 Christopher Girot, T he Four Trace Concepts in Landscape Architecture (New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 1999).

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108 During the finding stage a designer will put his/her ideas together Finding combines the process of searching as well as the outcome s Finding gives the evidence to support the designer initial intuitions about a site Findings are unique because they belong to a place and contribute to its identity. 3 While finding, a designer starts the brainstorming process H e/she starts to link the information together and draw some conclusion about a site. Finding has a correlated relation with g rounding; although g rounding has to occur before f i nding for the first time, some finding s require a designer to go back to a site and re investigate different aspect s of it to draw more clear and accurate conclusions. The last stage of G f ounding. In this step, a designer brings his/her intervention to the site by importing something new or even working with the existing Founding is the result of analyzing the other three steps ( l anding, g rounding, and f inding) t he act of founding is always a reaction to something that was already there." 4 In the f ounding step a designer starts using information and conclusions that have been d eveloped from the previous steps ( l anding, g rounding, and f inding) and reflect s them into real act toward a site development. Foundi ng is the step when a designer starts to make decisions about a site and transform ing them into design actions. The F our T race C oncepts defined by Girot will be the guideline for the proposed teaching frame work. This framework as mentioned earlier, will be the structure used to develop a course for teaching site analysis for first year students in architecture, landscape architectur e, and urban planning programs. First year design students are 3 Christopher Girot T he Four Trace Concepts in Landscape Architecture (New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 1999). 4 Ibid, 64.

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109 targete d by this course becaus e they represent a ra w material with more ability to learn and l ess discipline biases that they more likely will develop as they proceed in their programs. This course also proposes joining students from the three programs in the same course in order to introduce them to a wider spectrum of ideas, and also to give them the opportunity to experience how they can collaborate with different disciplines in approaching the s ame issue (which is one of the main goals of this thesis). The Structure of the Teaching Framework Th e course structure will be divided into lectures on site explorations assignments and a final project The academic semester consist ing from sixteen weeks that will be divided in half into two main sequences The first sequence will build up the knowledge skills and techniques required to read a site in a comprehensive manner, and also will develop students' skills in investigating sites. The second sequence will be the opportunity for students to apply what they have learned during the first sequence. During this course students will be introduced to weekly assignments that will follow t he f our t race c oncepts in l andscape architecture 5 In the first sequence of the semester the instructor will require the student s to follow the first three concepts ( l anding, g rounding, and f inding) with one week to investigate each topic The second sequence will have two sets of assignments; the first wi ll be very similar to the assignments during the first sequence and the second set of the assignment will require the students to follow the fourth concept of the Trace Concepts to produce programs for different sites 5 See appendix B.

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110 It is important here to note that the choice of the site/sites to be investigated during this course will be based on specific criteria that will meet the requirements of different methods of site analysis discussed in C hapter T hree. Each site has to have significant qualities (natural, cultural, social etc.) which allow different methods to take a place in analyzing this site. Sequence One (Week s One to Eight) This sequence aims at building the required knowledge, skills and the techniques that can assist students during his/her reading of sites. A single site will be chosen to be investigated. Visiting one site several times has many benefits to students learning F irst, analyzing the same site allow s the students to app ly different methods and techniques on the same conditions and context. This approach can help them critically evaluate these methods and techniques to eventually be capable of deciding which method to use, how to use it and in what particular context. This approach will also help the students navigate through their own value system and, in some situations, create a hybrid by overlaying these methods to achieve more comprehensive reading of a site. Another main benefit of visiting one site several time s is what Lynch, Hack, and Lassus emphasis about the importance of visiting a site at different times and under different circumstances. According to them, multiple site visits will generate different views, stories and memories about a site that will hel p a designer identify and test the visual and tactical scale in order to understand the memories, the localitie s, the tales, the local legend, the stories and the history of the site 6 6 Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack, Site Planning (Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press, 1984).

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111 In e ach week of this sequence (from week one to six) the instructor and his/her students will meet twice. In the first class meeting, the instructor will lecture and introduce a specific topic and then invite the class into an open discussion. The second meeting will be an on site exploration. When students arr ive at the site the instructor will give them an assignment which aims at exploring the site individually. At the end of this class, the instructor will generate an open discussion about the site and the assignments will be collected (students are not all owed to save copies of the assignments). In the seven th week, students will be introduced to McHarg 's method and the y will be required to do some computer based analysis. The Instructor will also introduce midterm assignment. In the eighth week, students are required to visit the same site individually and produce a comprehensive analysis for this site. Students are allowed to navigate between the methods, the techniques, and the tools that were presented in the previous weeks. Students are also a llowed to propose new techniques and tool s that were not discussed previously in the class At the end of this week, students are required to produce a presentation discussing their site analysis and findings. Students will be asked to explore what methods were used and why tools and the techniques they used and also the biases they discovered The instructor will provide students with their previous assignments to assist students in comparing between the two sets of findings. Sequence Two ( W eek s N ine to S ixteen) This sequence gives the students the opportunity to apply what they have learned during the first sequence. In this sequence, the students will be divided into small groups. Each week of t he first four week s of this sequence will focus on a different site. In the

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112 first meeting of each week, t he instructor will meet stu dents on a site Each group will be required to analyze the site and produce a comprehensive reading of it Each group will present their findings on the second meeting of each week. At the end of the group presentation s i n the twelfth week of the semester the instructor will introduce the final project. The final project will require the groups to develop a design program for each site of the four sites. Groups are also requ ired to support their ideas with case studies. Each week (from week thirteen to week sixteen) will be dedicated to one site. At the end of the semester, the instructor will require the students to generate an open discussion about what values they developed during the course of the semester and how their understanding about the surrounding contexts and their impacts on the reading of a site has been transformed. Students will also be required to discuss different biases they faced during their investigating of the sites and what approaches they followed to critically analyze these sites with minimal understanding biases. This course aims at providing students with the required knowledge to develop and refine their abilities t o effectively evaluate relevant natural, social and cultural characteristics of a site and its context. Students are expected to demonstrate an understanding of the existing methods of site analysis, and also to demonstrate an understanding on what might be missing in each method and identify inhe rent biases Students are expected to comprehensively explore site's issues based on research and analysis of multiple theoretical, social, political, economic, cultural and environmental contexts b efore formulating design decisions.

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113 Student Learning Outcome s T he most prevalent methods of site analysis and different tools of discovery for students to use in reading sites in a comprehensive manner are presented in this chapter The information docum ented in the previous chapters provides students with the required knowledge to develop and refine their abilities to effectively evaluate relevant natural, social and cultural characteristics of a site and its context. This t eaching method aims at the following students learning outcomes: 1 Students are expected to demonstrate an understanding of the existing methods of site analysis and to evaluate each method for biases and limitations. 2 Students are expected to demonstrate an awareness of their own valu es and biases and to develop techniques and tools that develop their critical thinking skills. 3 Students are expected to comprehensively explore site's issues based on research and analysis of multiple theoretical, social, political, economic, cultural and environmental contexts before formulating design decisions. 4 Students are expected to understand a set of cognitive, e ffective and behavioral skills and characteristics that support effective and appropriate interaction in a variety of cultural contexts. 5 Students are expected to demonstrate an understanding of how different disciplines (architecture, landscape architecture, urban planning, ecology, etc. ) interact in the same discourse of site analysis in terms of their climatic, ecological, technological socioeconomic, public health and cultural factors. 6 Students are expected to develop their investigative skills to be able to gather, assess record, apply, and raise critical questions, interpret information, consider diverse

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114 points of view, and comparatively evaluate diverse environmental, social, and cultural issues. At the end of the proposed course, students are expected to acquire the required knowledge and skills that can help them in comprehensively read different sites within different context. Students are expected to generate an integrative understanding that combines the experience based methods of on site exploration and the academic methods of the evaluation and the documentation of sites. Summ a ry This chapter pr esented a proposed framework for teaching site analysis which is based on the theories, the methods, an d tools of discovery presented i n the previous chapters. The concept of the framework is inverted from Christophe Girot's T race C of reading the landscape The Four Trace Concepts in Landscape Architecture l anding, g rounding, f inding, and f ounding. Students will be introduced into weekly assignments that will follow these concepts in order to apply them during different site investigations. Th e proposed framework is lucid and adaptable to various levels, various purposes and various students with different background s knowledge and skills. Based on the proposed teaching framework a course for teaching site analysis for first year students in architecture, landscape architecture and urban planning programs was developed The course is divided into two main sequences. The first sequence will build up the knowledge, the skills and the techn iques that are required to read a site in a comprehensive manner, and also will develop students' skills in investigating sites. The

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115 second sequence will be the students' opportunity to apply what they have learned during the first sequence. At the end of the proposed course students are expected to acquire the required knowledge and skills that help them comprehensively read different sites within different context. Students are expected to generate an integrative understanding that combines the experien ce based methods of on site exploration and the academic methods of the evaluation and the documentation of sites.

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116 CHAPTER VI CONCLUSION S AND DISCUSSION The information provided in the preceding chapters demonstrates the importance of the comprehensive reading of sites during the site analysis phase of the design process. To draw the most comprehensive image of a site, t his thesis examine d different methods used in analyzing sites over the past few decades. This research also discusse d different teaching methodologies and tools of discovery that assist instructors and students during the reading of sites. In addition, this research acknowledges both instructors' biases and students' biases as one of the most critical issues facing students and instructors during the site analysis phase which influence their judgments about the site. Based on the information, idea s, and insights discussed in this research this thesis presents a framework for teaching site analysis. This framework is lucid and adaptable to various levels, various purposes and various students with different backgrounds, knowledge and skills. T he proposed teaching framework is the structure for the designed site analysis course which aims at assisting students to acquire the required knowledge and skills that can help them in comprehensively read ing different sites within different context s Stu dents are expected to generate an integrative understanding that combines the experience based methods of on site exploration and the academic methods of the evaluation and the documentation of sites. Research Summary The findings state that although in various methods no single method gives a comprehensive image of a site. Each method

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117 has developed a discourse oriented toward highlighting one perspective of understanding a site and eliminates or underesti mates the others. The finding s also reveal that t s whole set of variables and factors and their relations need to be considered If each discourse or discipline discusses the notion of a site without taking into account other considerations of the different discourses they will uncritically iterate their own conceptions of sites which will leave a great deal of knowledge unarticulated. r eading s traditional site analysis and the targeted comprehensive site analysis. To read a site in a comprehensive manner, this research argues that designers must look and comprehend the meanings and the underlying values of a site. They also must discover the inf ormation that is visible and invisible, and then critically understand them to obtain the mos t comprehensive image of a site. The information provided in chapter two demonstrates t h at the most obvious benefits of a comprehensive approach in site analysis are the technical ones (such as topography, climate, hydrology and soils) The review of related literature found that the careful analysis of sites and their context s can lead to higher quality built environments. If the existing conditions of a site are poorly understood, the development of this site can result in detrimental environmental, social, and economic impacts. 1 Acknowledging different i ssues about a site can help a voiding inherent site problems. Accurate information from reading the physical fe atures of any site lead s to more suitable projects A designer also can orient his/her design concept based on site analysis findings; these 1 James A LaGro, Site Analysis: A Contextual Approach to Sustainable Land Planning and Site Design, Second Edition ( Wiley, 2007).

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118 findings give a designer a rational scientific base for spatial organization and orientation of buildings, structures, and outdoor spaces. These informed decisions can reduce energy consumption for heating and cooling buildings and create more pleasant environment. Beside s the technical considerations of sites, this research argues that designers must be aware of how a site is socially and culturally constructed. Sites feature a multipl e of interests. Conflicts between underlying goals and values must be precisely understood and reflected through design decisions. Designers play a significant role in bridging t he gap between stakeholders and community members. Th e literature review presented in chapter two points out that a designer should understand which parts of the community are inter connected; how small scale things people care about reflect big changes af fecting the community system as a whole It was useful for the goals of this research to understand how site analysis is approached in different methods to demonstrate an understanding of these methods and to be able to discover what is missing in each method and the inhe rent biases in each of them Th is thesis focused on the most prevalent site analysis methods in the design profession s These methods reflect different perspectives and approaches in site a nalysis, and the proponents of these methods are from various disciplines; architects, landscape architects, planners, educators, researchers, and theorists. The methods discussed in C hapter T hree are : t he Technical Method by Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack, th e Scientific Systematic Method by Ian McHarg, the Context Sensitive Method by James A. LaGro, and the Experiential Method by Bernard Lassus and Richard Haag. The findings of this research acknowledge how all of the four previous methods are significant; they all address critical aspects of the site phenomenon

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119 and approach site analysis from different perspectives. They all aim at getting the most valuable information that enriches design process toward the most suitable d esign. They all recommend engaging surrounding context (social, historical, environmental, and economical, etc ) in acknowledging a site and its characters, and they all argue that a site cannot be understood in isolation. Discussion T his resear ch acknowl edges the significance of the discussed methods, but it also points at some of their limitation s and bi ases that limit their ability to lead the designers to a comprehensive site analysis. A ll of these methods have a set of values that the ir proponents argue a designer should cover most of them T hese values and their meanings vary from one method to another. These methods are oriented to ward different scales of sites and use different vocabulary and they also use some similar term in various ways. Anot her significant differentiation among the methods is the set of techniq ues and their implementations. Although on site exploration, for example, is a common technique among these methods, it differs in how it should be applied from one method to another. Although all of these methods are significant and influence the designer research in different fields, no single method gives a comprehensive image of the site. Each method has developed a discourse oriented toward highlighting one perspective of understanding the site and eliminates or underestimates the others. Having these differences in analyzing a site among these methods allow exploring a site from different perspectives and different angles. It also gives students a wide spectrum of tools and vocabulary that allow them to navig ate through their own value system, and in some situations, creating a hybr id by overlaying these methods to get the most useful tools of

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120 them to achieve the most comprehensive reading of a site. It is useful for students to understand these methods, their overlapping and their conflicts to increases students' ability to decide which method to use, how to use it and in what particular context. The m ethods of s ite analysis discuss ed in this research present ed critical ideas about It was also fundamental for achieving the goals of this thesis to discuss different teaching t ools of d that can assist students in investigating sites. Different methods can take place i n teaching site analysis in order to enhance students' learning experience; each method generates different techniques, skills and knowledge. As well, different tools can be used for different purposes or situations. A site, a designer and different reso urces (such as budget, time and availability) can determine what the most effective tools to be used in investigating sites are It is useful for students to demonstrate a good knowledge about the available tools, where to use them, and in what particular context. This thesis presen ted some teaching methods and tools of discovery that focus on encourag ing students to be positive members in the teaching process and to allow them bring their experiences and knowledge to the classroom discourse. This thesis also acknowledges both instructors' biases and students' biases as one of the most critical issues facing students and instructors during the site analysis phase which influence their judgments about a site The instructor and the students must be aware of these different biases in order to evaluate site issues in a critical manner. This self awareness will generate an active dialogue between students and their instructor in

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121 order to minimize the effects of different biases and to open new perspectives in a pproaching site issues. T h e proposed teaching framework in its concept and structure aims at emphasizing the awareness of these different qualities and issues (in the methods of site analysis, the teaching methods, and the teaching biases discussed in this thesis) This awareness can increase the opportunity to understand different sites in an objective perspective that aims at achieving the most suitable intervention that fit s with in the given context. The proposed framework, through its systematic pro ce ss, argues that the design program should be generated from the site itself and based on the findings of reading the site. Another critical concept that this teaching framework points at is the cooperation between different design disciplines (architectu re, landscape architecture, urban planning, ecology... etc. ) within the same investigation The proposed framework gives students the opportunity to get closers to different disciplines engaged in the design process. The argument here is that this approach will create more open discussions that generate more critical ideas and insight s ; which eventually will enhance the decision making process and knowledge and skills. Future Research The politics of sites is one of the topics tha t this research did not cover. Understanding the political forces and their impacts on forming the community is very fundamental. Discussing this topic within its wide dimensions will need an extensive research and review for related literature and legal d ocuments in various discourses. Based on the limited time of this research and its core targets and goals this research acknowledged this issue in general without exploring it in depth. Future research should

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122 discuss the political impacts on the decision making process and also how political trends contribute to forming communities and transforming social and cultural values. This thesis also present ed a framework based on the existing methodologies of site analysis, and it is not proposing a new method. This thesis is more oriented toward the teaching of site analysis rather than the professional practice. Future research related to this thesis would aim at struct uring a new methodology of site analysis that give s a comprehensive reading of site taking onto account all the critical issue that existing methods have discussed within one comprehensive method. Another critical piece that needs more research and discus sion is the inherent individual 's bias es which are understood by individual 's cultures. As mentioned earlier, this thesis briefly acknowledged instructors' and students' biases as one of the most critical issues students face during the site analysis phase Teaching biases is a complicate d topic and in many situations cannot be avoided. Future research might aim at developing n ew teaching methods that are oriented toward limiting the effects of different biases can be useful tools to enrich the learning e xperience and to demonstrate a succes sful student learning. As noted earlier, the choice of the site/sites to be investigated during this course will be based on specific criteria that will meet the requirements of different methods of site analysis discus sed in C hapter T hree. Each site has to have significant qualities (natural, cultural, social etc.) which allow different methods to take place in analyzing this site. Future research can also include evaluating different findings about the different sites (with different scales and qualities) that are investigated during different version of the proposed course to understand and compare the results generated by teaching the

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123 course in different approaches. This evaluation can help the instructor decide on t he limitations and the potential s develop the teaching strategies used during the propose d course.

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124 BIBLIOGRAPHY Allen, Stan Infrastructural Urbanism . On Landscape Urbanism (Austin TX: Center for American Architecture and Design University of Texas at Austin School of Architecture, 1999), 174181. Appleton, J ay The Experience of Landscape ( Wiley; r evised e dition, 1996) Bell, Simon Elements of Visual Design in the Landscape (London: Spon Press, 2004). Bell, Simon ed. Exploring the Boundaries of Landscape Architecture (Taylor & Francis, 2012). Bird, Maribel V. Exposing Cultural Bias in the Classroom: Self Evaluation as a Catalyst for Transformation . Analytic Teaching and Philosophical P raxis Vol. 32 Issue 1, 1821. Braae, Ellen and Tietjen, A nne Constructing Sites on a Large Scale: Towards New Design Methods . Nordic Journal of Architecture ( Copenhagen: The Danish Architectural Press, 2011). Brandenburg, A ndrea M and Carroll, M atthew S Your Place or Mine: The E ffect of P lace C reation on E nvironmental V alues and L andscape M eanings . Society and Natural Resources : An International Journal, Volume 8, Issue 5, (January 1995) : 381398. Burns, C arol and Kahn, A ndrea Site M atters: Design C oncepts, H istories, and Strategies (New York: Routledge, 2005). Burns, C arol On Site : Architectural Preoccupation . in Drawing Building Text edited by An d rea Khan, 146167, New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 2005 Corner, James Ecology and Landscape as Agents of Creativity In Ecological Design and Planning, edited by Georg Thompson, and Steiner Frederick, 80108, New York: Willy, 1997. Corner, James The Agency of Mapping: Speculation, Critique, and Invention. in O n Landscape Urbanism edited by Dean J. Almy, Michael Benedik, and Christine Wong, 148173, Austin TX: Center for American Architecture and Design University of Texas at Austin School of Architecture, 1996. Corner, James Alex S MacLean and Denis Cosgrove. Taking Measures across the American Landscape (N ew Haven: Yale University Press, 1996). Corner, Ja mes Recovering Landscape as a Critical Cultural Practice. In Recovering Landscape. Essays in Contemporary Landscape Architecture edited by James Corner 126, New York: Prin ceton Architectural Press, 1999. Cosgrove, Denis E, Social Formation and Symbolic L andscape (University of Wisconsin Press, 1984)

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125 Cresswell, T im. Defining P lace: Place: A Short Introduction ( Wiley Blackwell; first edition, 2004). Cullen, Gordon. The C oncise Townscape (Oxford: Architectural Press, 2009) Dunn, Rita, S., and Dunn Kenneth J Approaches To Individualizing Instruction: Contracts and Other Effective Teaching Strategies (N ew Y ork: Parker Publishing Company, Inc., 1972). Foxley A lice Distance and Engagement : Walking, Thinking and Making Landscape Vogt Landscape Architects (Baden: Lars Muller Publishers, 2010) Francis, Mark Case Study Method for Landscape Architecture (Washington, D.C.: Landscape Architecture Foundation, 1999). Girot, C hristopher The Four Trace Concepts in Landscape Architecture (New York: Princeton Architectural Press 1999). Hauxner, Malene. Drawing and Reading: Theory and Method in Landscape Architecture ( Copenhagen: University of Copenhagen, Forest & Landscape, 2010) Harley, J. Brian "Maps, Knowledge, and Power in The Iconography of Landscape, edited by Cosgrove Denis and Daniels Stephen 277312, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1988. Harvey, D avid From S pace to P lace and B ack A gain : Reflections on the C ondition of P ostmodernity in Mapping the Future: Local C ulture, G lobal C hange edited by Joy Bird, Curtis Barry Tim Putnam, George Robertson and Lisa Tickner 3 29, London: Rout ledge, 1993. Higuchi, Tadahiko. The Visual and Spatial Structure of Landscapes (Cambridge : The MIT Press, 1975). Hilderbrand, Gary R. A Teacher's Teacher. in Richard Haag Bloedel Reserve and Gas Works Park edited by William S Saunders, 7376, Princeton Architectural Press; first edition,1998. Jacobs, Peter The Sensual Landscape of Bernard Lassus, in T he Landscape Approach, edited by Bernard Lassus, 18, (University of Pennsylvania, 1998), Jakle, John A T he Visual Elements of Landscape ( The University of Massachusetts Press Amherst 1987) Kahn, Andrea From the Ground U p: Programming the Urban Site (The Harvard Architecture Review, 1998), 5471. Kahn, Andrea Overlooking: A Look at H ow We Look at Site or Site as Discrete Object of Desire. In Desiring Practices. Architecture, Gender and the Interdisciplinary edited by Katerina Ruedi, Duncan Mc Corquodale and Sarah Wigglesworth, 174185, London: Black Dog Publishing, 1996.

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126 Kaplan, Rachel The A nalysis of P erception via P reference: A Strategy for studying H ow the Environment is E xperienced (Landscape Planning Volume 12, Issue 2, 1985), 161176. Kaplan, Rachel and Herbert, Eugene J Familiarity and P reference: A C ross C ultural A nalysis . In Environmental A esthetics: Theory, R esearch, and A pplications edited by Jack L Nasar, New York: Camb ridge University Press, 1988. Kwon Miwon, One Place after Another : Si te Specific art and Locational I denti ty (Cambridge, London: MIT press, 2002) LaGro, James A. Site Analysis: A Contextual Approach to Sustainable Land Planning and Site Design ( Wiley, Second Edition, 2007). Lassus, Bernard. The Landscape Approach, (University of Pennsylvania, 1998). Lewis, Peirce K Axioms for Reading the Landscape . In The Interpretation of Ordinary Landscapes edited by Donald W Meinig, 1132, Oxford University Press, 1979. Li Xiaodong, Meaning of the Site: A Holistic Approach Toward Site Analysis on B ehalf of the Development of a Design Tool B ased on a C omparative C ase S tudy betw een FengShui and Kevin Lynch's S ystem, (PhD diss. Universiteitsdrukkerij, Eindhoven, The Netherla nds, 1993). Lynch, K evin and Gary, Hack Site Planning ( Cam bridge Massachusetts: MIT Press, 1984). Lynch, Kevin. The Image of the City ( Cam bridge Massachusetts: MIT Press, 1960). Massey, Doreen B Space, Place and Gender (Cambridge: Polity Press, 1994). McHarg, I an. L, Design with Nature ( New York: The Natural History Press, 1969). Meinig, Donald W. The Beholding Eye: Ten Versions of the Same Scene In The Interpretation of Ordinary Landscapes: Geographical Essays edited by Donald. W. Meinig and John B Jackson, 3350, New York : Oxford University Press, 1979. Meyer Elizabeth Seized by Sublime Sentiments . in Richard Haag Bloedel Reserve and Gas Works Park edited by William S Saunders, 528, Princeton Architectural Press; first edition,1998. Meyer Elizabeth Site Citations: The Grounds of Modern Landscape Architecture . In Site M atters: Design Concepts, H istories, and Strategies edited by Carol Burn and Andrea Kahn, 92 129, New York: Routledge, 2005. NorbergSchulz, Christian Genius Loci: Towards a Phenomenology of Architecture (New York: Rizzoli, 1979).

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127 Shor, Ira Empowering E ducation: Critical T eaching for Social C hange (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1992). Saunders, William S ed. Richard Haag Bloedel Reserve and Gas Works Park (Princeton Architectural Press; First E dition 1998) Spirn, Anne Whiston. Ian McHarg, Landscape Architecture, and Environmentalism: Ideas and Methods in Context . in Environmentalism in Landscape Architectur e edited by Michel Conan 97114, Washington, D.C.: Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, 2000. Spirn, Anne Whiston. The Granite Garden: Urban Nature and Human Design (New York: Basic Books, 1985). Spirn, Anne Whiston. The Language of the Landscape (Yale University Press, 1998). Stegner, Wallace. A Sense of Place (New York: Random House, 1992). Steiner, Frederick R. T he Living Landscape: An Ecological Approach to Landscape Planning ( McGraw Hill College, 2000). Todd, Kim W Site, Space, and Structure (New York, NY: Van Nostrand Reinhold, 1985). Tuan, Yi Fu Space and Place: The Perspective of Experience ( University of Minnesota Press, Minneapolis, 1977). Tuan, Yi Fu Topophilia: a Study of Environmental Perception, Attitudes, and Values ( New York: Columbia University Press, 1974). Tylor, Edward B Primitive Culture (New York, NY: Gordon Press Publishers, 1973). Waterman, T hompson. The Fundamental s of Landscape Architecture (Fairchild Books, 2009). Internet Sources Briggs, Xavier de Souza Rethinking Community Development: Managing Dilemmas about Goals and Values (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2007), accessed February 2, 2014. http://web.mit.edu/workingsmarter/media/pdf ws kia brief 0701.pdf. Merriam Webster.com. "Read, a ccessed September 23, 2013. http://www.merriam webster.com/dictionary/read. Merriam Webster.com. "Site ," a ccessed September 23, 2013. http://www.merriam webster.com/dictionary/site

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128 Oxforddictionaries.com. "Read, a ccessed September 23, 2013. ht tp://www.oxforddictionaries.com/us/definition/american_english/read?q=read. Oxforddictionaries.com. "Site ," a ccessed September 23, 2013. http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/us/definition/american_english/site?q=site.

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129 APPENDIX A THE USE OF T HE TERMS SITE, SITE ANALYSIS AND READ OVER TIME Use over time of : site: Google B ooks Ngram viewer, 2013. Use over time of : site analysis: Google B ooks Ngram viewer, 2013. Use over time of : read : Google B ooks Ngram viewer, 2013.

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130 APPENDIX B READING SITES : A COMPREHENSIVE APPROACH FOR SITE ANALYS IS COURSE SYLLABUS A site is a set of environmental and social relations that form human communities and influence s human actions and behaviors. Each site has its unique set of historical, natural, and cultural values that determine s how a site is evaluated. According to Christophe Gir ot in The Four Trace Concepts in Landscape Architecture , a designer understands a site by overlaying different analytical layers and recognizing the visible and the invisible forces. In this context, designers should go beyond the tangible forces; tangib le forces provide designers with a partial image that does not reflect what is in a site and how it should be transformed. On the other hand, sites have problems and issues that are highly interrelated. In many situations, the solution for one problem requires designers to solve other site's issues. Few, if any, issues can be treated effectively in isolation from other site's issues. According to Girot, the designer understands a site by overlaying different analytical layers and recognizing the visible and the invisible forces.1 The careful analysis of sites and sites context can lead to higher quality built environments. If the sites' existing conditions are poorly understood, sites development can result in detrimental environmental, social, and economic impacts.2 1 Christopher Girot, the Four Trace Concepts in Landscape Architecture (New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 1999) 2 James LaGro, Site Analysis, A Contextual Approach to Sustainable Land Planning and Site Design (John Wiley and Sons, Inc. 2008). Introduction

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131 This course aims at providing students with the required knowledge to develop and refine students' ability to effectively evaluate relevant natural, social and cultural characteristics of a site and its context. Students are expected to demonstrate an understanding of the existing methods of site analysis, and to evaluate each method to be able to discover what is missing in each method and what the inherited biases in each of them are. Students are expected to comprehens ively explore site's issues based on research and analysis of multiple theoretical, social, political, economic, cultural and environmental contexts before formulating design decisions. At the end of this course, students are expected to acquire the requi red knowledge and skills that help them comprehensively read different sites within different context. Students are expected to generate an integrative understanding that combines the experiencebased methods of onsite exploration s and the academic method s of the evaluation and the documentation of sites. This course presents the most prevalent methods of site analysis and different tools of discovery to help students read sites in a comprehensive manner. The methods, tools and technique targeted by this course will provide students with the required knowledge to develop and refine students' abilit ies to effectively evaluate relevant natural, social and cultural characteristics of a site and its context. By the end of this course students should be able to: 1. Demonstrate an understanding of the existing methods of site analysis and to evaluate each method for biases and limitations. Student Learning Outcomes Course Objectives

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132 2. D emonstrate an awareness of their own values and biases and to develop techniques and tools that develop their critical thinking skills. 3. Comprehensively explore site's issues based on research and analysis of multiple theoretical, social, political, economic, cultural, and environmental contexts before formulating design decisions. 4. U nderstand a set of cognitive, effective, and behavioral sk ills and characteristics that support effective and appropriate interaction in a variety of cultural contexts. 5. U nderstand how different disciplines (architecture, landscape architecture, urban planning, ecology, etc.) interact in the same discourse of site analysis in terms of their climatic, ecological, technological, socioeconomic, public health, and cultural factors. 6. Develop their investigative skills to be able to gather, assess, record, apply, and raise critical questions, interpret information, consider diverse points of view, and comparatively evaluate diverse environment al, social, and cultural issue. The course structure will be divided into lectures, onsite explorations, assignments and a final project. The academic semester consists of sixteen weeks which will be divided in half into two main sequences. The first sequence will build up t he knowledge and the techniques required to read a site in a comprehensive manner, and also will develop students' skills in investigating sites. The second sequence will be the students' opportunity to apply what they have learned during the first sequence. The Structure of the Course

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133 Sequence One (Week s One to Eight) In each week of this sequence (from week one to six), the instructor and the students will meet twice. In the first meeting, the instructor will lecture and introduce a specific topic and then invite the students into an open discussion. The second meeting of each week will be an on site exploration. In the seventh week, the students will be required to do some computer based analysis. The Instructor also will introduce midterm assignment. On the eighth week, the students will be required to visit the same site individually and produce a comprehensive analysis for this site. Sequence Two (Week s Nine to Sixteen ) In this sequenc e, students will be divided into small groups. Each week of the first four weeks of this sequence will focus on a different site. In the first meeting of each week, the instructor will meet the students on a site. Each group will be required to analyze the site and produce a comprehensive reading of it. Each group will present their findings on the second meeting of each week. At the end of the group presentations on the twelfth week of the semester the instructor will introduce the final project. Attendance: You are expected to be on time for the class and prepared to fully participate. Readings: E ach week you will be assigned to read particular text s about a specific topic. The readings will be emailed and/or posted on the course website at least three days before the class. Field assignments: These assignments will be completed on the site individually. We will visit the same site several times The instructor will present each Requirements

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134 assignment to the students at the beginning of the class. Assignments will be collected at the end of the class, and the students are not allowed to keep a copy of the assignments for themselves. Midterm project: Each student will be required to produce a comprehensive reading of the sam e site that we were exploring in the previous weeks. Students will also be required to present their findings to the class Site analysis and presentation assignments: These assignment s will be completed on the site in small groups. Each week we will vis it a different site. The instructor will present each assignment to the students at the beginning of the class. Each group will be required to analyze the site and to produce a comprehensive reading of it. Each group will present their findings during the second class of each week. Final project: Students will be divided into small groups. The final project will require the groups to develop a design program for each site of the four sites. Groups are required to support their ideas with case studies. Each week (from week thirteen to week sixteen) will be dedicated for one site. Date Topic Assignment Readings Week 1 Introduction Syllabus + Schedule Survey What is a Site? Assignment 1: Body Measurements TBD Week 2 What is Site Analysis? Why is important to understand site in a comprehensive manner? Site visit: Landing Assignment 2: Landing TBD Course Schedule

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135 Week 3 Tools of Discovery Site visit: Grounding and Finding Assignment 3: Sensual Qualities of Sites TBD Week 4 The Experiential Method by Bernard Lassus and Richard Haag Site visit: Grounding and Finding Assignment 4: Visual Qualities of Sites TBD Week 5 The Technical Method by Kevin Lynch and Gary Hack Site visit: Grounding and Finding Assignment 5: Cultural Attributes and Issues TBD Week 6 The Context Sensitive Method by James A. LaGro Site visit: Grounding and Finding Assignment 6: Social Attributes and Issues TBD Week 7 The Scientific Systematic Method by Ian McHarg Computer based analysis: Grounding and Finding Introduction for the Midterm assignment Assignment 7: Environmental Attributes and Issues of sites TBD Week 8 Midterm DUE: In class presentation None Week 9 On site Exploration. Site One Analysis Presentation Landing, Grounding, and Finding Assignment : DUE: In class presentation None Week 10 On site Exploration. Site Two Analysis Presentation Landing, Grounding, and Finding Assignment : DUE: In class presentation None Week 11 On site Exploration. Site Three Analysis Presentation Landing, Grounding, and Finding Assignment : DUE: In class presentation None Week 12 On site Exploration. Site Four Analysis Presentation Landing, Grounding, and Finding Assignment : DUE: In class presentation None

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136 Week 13 No class. Site One Programming Presentation Founding : DUE: In class presentation None Week 14 No class. Site Two Programming Presentation Founding : DUE: In class presentation None Week 15 No class. Site Three Programming Presentation Founding : DUE: In class presentation None Week 16 No class. Site Four Programming Presentation Founding : DUE: In class presentation None Attendance and participation 10% Field assignments: 20% Midterm project: 20% Site analysis and presentation assignments: 25% Final project: 25% Absences, tardiness, assignments and papers Except for documented health or disability reasons and family emergencies, or other life incidents, I will not accept excuses for absences, tardiness, missed or papers not submitted. Please contact the instructor as soon as possible if you know that you might miss a class or not meet a deadline so that we can discuss arrangements. Policies, rules, and regulations Grading schem e

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137 Classes begin and end on time. Two unexcused absences will be allowed before an academic penalty of one h alf grade reduction is imposed. Papers, projects, or any other required assignments that are turned in late will receive one half grade reductions for every day they are late. Any student who fails to turn in a papers or an assignment will receive either a z ero for the work missed. Plagiarism Sadly, plagiarism is a serious concern in a cademia. Students are expected to know, understand, and comply with the ethical standards of the university, including rules against plagiarism. Plagiarism is the use of another persons ideas or words without acknowledgement. The incorporation of another persons work into yours requires appropriate identifications and acknowledgement. Instructors expect students to be familiar with and use proper citation formats, such as ML A, Chicago Manual of Style, APA, etc. The following are considered to be forms of plagiarism when the source is not noted: wordfor word copying of another persons ideas or words; the mosaic (interspersing your own words here and there while, in essenc e, copying anothers work); the paraphrase (the rewriting of anothers work, while still using their basic ideas or theories); fabrication (inventing sources); submission of anothers work as your own; and neglecting quotation marks when including direct quotes. The use of precedent in design projects is not just legitimate, but oftentimes necessary and will greatly enhance the quality of your projects. Project precedents will need to be referenced properly, similar to textual sources. Instructors will report cases of

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138 plagiarism to the appropriate departmental, college and university committees and assign a failing grade to the paper or the assignment. If there are any questions or uncertainty regarding plagiarism and proper referencing practices, please contact any of the course instructors immediately. Decorum The following ground rules apply to all students and are designed to ensure a classroom environment conducive to learning for all students: 1. Pagers, beepers, cellular telephones, and handheld internet devices must remain deactivated throughout lectures, discussions and presentations. Outside of those times and within studio they should only be used for communications pertinent to or necessary for the studio work. 2. Students who engage in disruptive classroom behavior will be reported to the concerned authorities at the university. Disruptive behavior includes, but is not limited to, arriving late to class without explanation or apology; leaving class early without explanation or apology; reading a newspaper or magazine; reading a book with no connection to the content of the course; engaging in prolonged private conversations; sleeping in class; eating, drinking, and/or gum chewing; passing notes; harassment or verbal or physical threats to another student or to the instructor; failing to deactivate pagers, beepers, cellular phones, and/or handheld internet devices; bringing children to class.

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139 APPENDIX C SAMPLES OF THE PROPO SED ASSIGNMENTS Intent This assignment is the fourth assignment in the reading sites series In this assignment you a re expected to analyze one or more of the site's visual qualities during your on site exploration It is important for a designer to understand different visual qualities of a site in order to generate a realisti c projection of visual elements that represent the living envir onment as its users perceive it. Requirements Students are required to explore the visual qualities of the site in depth in order to discover and understand what these qualities are, how these qualities are constructed and maintained and why these qualities draw the structures, the organization and the identity of the site Format Students are expected to apply different visual means to record, document, measure, explore, and discover different visual qualities through: diagrams, mental map s, drawings, sketches, photographs matrices and collage. This assignment must be completed during the class period and it must be submitted to the instructor at the end of the class. (Students are not allowed to keep copies of the assignment for themselves). Assignment 4 : The Visual Qualities of Sites

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140 Intent This assignment is the students' opportunity to apply what they have learned during the first sequence. Each s tudent is required to visit the same site we have been exploring during the last few weeks in order to produce a comprehensive analysis of this site. Students are allowed to navigate between the methods, the techniques, and the tools that were presented in the previous weeks. Students are also allowed to propose new techniques and tools that were not discussed previously in the class. At the end of this week, each student is required to produce a presentation discussing his/her analysis findings and pointing at what methods, tools and the techniques he/she used during his/her reading of the site and why the y decided to use them. Requirements Stude nts are required to analyze different site's values and forces such as (but not limited to) the following: Aesthetic Values (visual and sensual): Spatial organization and relationships Visual quality Visibility Focal points and l andmarks Memories Place Identity Underlying values and m eanings Cultural Social Values History Social s tructure Politics Public i nfrastructure Demographics Economy Midterm Assignment: Landing, Grounding, and Finding.

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141 Land use Behavior s ystem Utilities Circulation Neighborhood and building c haracters Environmental Values (physical and biological) Geography Topography Hydrology Geology and s oil Climate Vegetation Wildlife Water Habitability Natural hazards Format Students are expected to apply different means to record, document, measure, explore, and discover different site's values through: diagrams, mental maps drawings, sketches, photographs matrices and collage This assignment must be presented as in class presentation. Make sure that your presentation reflects an integrative understanding that combines the experiencebased methods of onsite exploration and the academic methods of the evaluation and the documentation of sites.