Last Thursday, we visited the opening of the A+D Museum’s new show, Drylands Design. While politicians squabble about oil and other resources, the show drives home the point that water is the reserve that will become the most fraught in the future as populations increase and climate change worsens. The Arid Lands Institute at Woodbury University culled the exhibit from the winners of their Drylands Design Competition, which encouraged architects, engineers, and urban designers to respond to the challenges of coming water scarcity.
While some were a bit too complex for the average museum-goer, most proposals could improve aesthetics and quality of life while also addressing water issues.
Professional Honor Merit Award Winner, Tom Kasbau, proposed re-introducing “vernal pools,” nutrient-rich wetlands, along the LA River corridor and near freeway underpasses and other infrastructure. Solar panels along such infrastructure (i.e. the river’s banks) would power desalinization systems, returning freshwater into the city’s reservoirs and into adjacent farms.
Student Honor Merit Award winner Rebecca Lederer proposed “New Man’s Land,” a system of wetlands, treatment facilities, riparian community spaces, and groundwater wells along the length of the US-Mexico Border. The focus will be on 14 “sister cities” along the border, which would share water resources and, just as important, create a sense of community across the international divide.
To see more of these proposals visit here or better still go to the A+D Museum before the show closes on April 26.