Landscape as Infrastructure : A Base Primer book cover
1st Edition

Landscape as Infrastructure
A Base Primer

ISBN 9781138643925
Published December 5, 2016 by Routledge
508 Pages

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Book Description

As ecology becomes the new engineering, the projection of landscape as infrastructure—the contemporary alignment of the disciplines of landscape architecture, civil engineering, and urban planning— has become pressing. Predominant challenges facing urban regions and territories today—including shifting climates, material flows, and population mobilities, are addressed and strategized here. Responding to the under-performance of master planning and over-exertion of technological systems at the end of twentieth century, this book argues for the strategic design of "infrastructural ecologies," describing a synthetic landscape of living, biophysical systems that operate as urban infrastructures to shape and direct the future of urban economies and cultures into the 21st century.

Pierre Bélanger is Associate Professor of Landscape Architecture and Co-Director of the Master in Design Studies Program at Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design. As part of the Department of Landscape Architecture and the Advansed Studies Program, Bélanger teaches and coordinates graduate courses on the convergence of ecology, infrastructure and urbanism in the interrelated fields of design, planning and engineering. Dr. Bélanger is author of the 35th edition of the Pamphlet Architecture Series from Princeton Architectural Press, GOING LIVE: from States to Systems (, co-editor with Jennifer Sigler of the 39th issue of Harvard Design Magazine, Wet Matter, and co-author of the forthcoming volume ECOLOGIES OF POWER: Mapping Military Geographies & Logistical Landscapes of the U.S. Department of Defense. As a landscape architect and urbanist, he is the recipient of the 2008 Canada Prix de Rome in Architecture and the Curator for the Canada Pavilion ad Canadian Exhibition, "EXTRACTION," at the 2016 Venice Architecture Biennale (

Table of Contents

Imaging Infrastructure, Part I: Prepositioning, 1. Disorganization of the Book, 2. A Landscape Manifesto, 3. Systems of Systems, Part II: Processing, 4. Redefining Infrastructure, 5. Synthetic Surfaces, 6. Ecologies of Disassembly, Part III: Projecting, 7. Landscape as Infrastructure, 8. Foodshed, 9. Metabolic Landscape, 10. Regionalization, 11. Infrastructural Ecologies,

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Pierre Bélanger is a cartographer, curator, author, educator, and builder originally trained as a landscape architect and urban planner. With transdisciplinary expertise in the areas of ecology, infrastructure, media, and urbanism, he founded the Landscape Infrastructure Lab and OPSYS Media in 2001. Selected books and publications include LANDSCAPE AS INFRASTRUCTURE, ECOLOGIES OF POWER, GOING LIVE, RISK ECOLOGIES, WET MATTER, EXTRACTION EMPIRE.


"Bélanger, a self-proclaimed landscape urbanist, argues that a new, ecologically informed set of conceptual frames and material techniques will replace the tradition of reductive, monofunctional, centralized approaches to infrastructure that have dominated urbanization up to now."

Gale Fulton, ASLA, Director of the School of Landscape Architecture at the University of Tennessee, Landscape Architecture Magazine