We work in regions, cities, and neighborhoods designing landscapes, installations, and products through a research process that embraces science and art, culture and nature.
2017 National Award of Architecture of Venezuela:
Botanical Urban Landscapes: Lessons from Roberto Burle Marx’s Botanical Garden in Maracaibo.
The Botanical Garden of Maracaibo (JBM), Venezuela was conceived in 1983 as a Garden School for the Preservation of the Tropical Dry Forest and as the First School of Horticulture in Latin America, by Roberto Burle Marx and Leandro Aristeguieta. This simultaneity of research and action sets the project apart. The opening ceremony was the also the commencement of the first class of Landscape Horticulturists of Latin-America.
Team: Management Strategy: François Galletti; Advisors: Lourdes Peñaranda and David Gouverneur; Horticulture and gardening: Alicia Ferrer, Fernando Reyes: Biology: Carlos Portillo; Botany: José Grande. Guillermo Stormes, Juan Morillo; Field Coordinator: Juan Marrufo; Media and events coordinator: Daniel González; Contractor: Arq. William Skinner. HOV Services; Hydraulic engineering: Gustavo Prieto; Gardening and maintenance: Rubiel Brito.
The ‘Avenida 5 de Julio’ Landscape Master Plan serves as the first example of how could work the expansion of the Botanical Garden towards the urban landscape.
Maracaibo's New Central Park
The garden’s phytogeographical structure and sequence translates into an urban learning adventure that takes citizens from the most arid life zones at the highest elevation of the city (where the central park of the city is proposed by the plan as a Tropical Dry Forest Reservoir), through the different native forests and towards the Lake Maracaibo, in correspondence to the geotechnical characteristics of each area.
The garden's continuous water armature becomes a living support system and an experiential device to connect the native forests. The water armatures goes from the highest along the avenue through three types of relationships: constant water presence in the lake and the ravines, intermittent water in topographical depressions and flooding areas, and invisible presence of water in subterranean drainage systems and aquifers.
The network of botanical centralities where the water armatures take more space and function as outdoor classrooms. The plan proposes a sequence of oasis based on an artistic-botanic educational program. While observing the geological and hydrological characteristics of the land, the oasis function as transition points between different kinds of native forest to contribute to the larger goals of memorability and resiliance.