Digital Landscape Architecture (JoDLA) Collection


Distributed Site Analysis Utilizing Drones and 360-degree Video

This paper examines the use of drones mounted with a 360-degree video camera to facilitate site analysis of remote sites in instances where it is not feasible for an entire group of students to visit a site, and to provide the opportunity for repeated review of such sites. By utilizing drones and 360- degree video cameras, it is possible to provide students with an immersive virtual experience of a site that can be referenced continuously throughout a project. This research describes the use of 360-degree video to document a half-acre site. Students were asked to conduct a site analysis by viewing the video using Google Cardboard and a computer. The site analyses produced by the students were compared to determine their effectiveness, and a focus group was held with students who participated in the experiment to gather feedback on the experience of using the 360-degree video. The results of the experiment suggest that the technique can be used effectively to conduct a general site analysis, and is especially effective when coupled with additional resources about a site. It is concluded that students are able to successfully conduct a remote site analysis by utilizing this method.

3D Modelling Creating Tool for Landscape Design: Camera

Advancements in the field of reality capture technology are transforming the process of obtaining digital spatial data of our environment. 3D scanning software are initially born as simple touristic 3D visualization (e. g. Photosynth) of archaeological and/or architectural sites or cultural assets (e. g. statues, fountains and so on), nowadays allow to reconstruct impressive photorealistic 3D models in short time and at very low costs. This paper will discuss how the geometry and texture of landscape objects (such as trees, statues, furniture and etc.) can be automatically constructed, modelled and visualized from digital imagery using a basic camera and freely-available open-source software called 123D Catch by Autodesk. In terms of 3D modelling study illustrate a fully automatic approach for the alignment of scans without the need for any artificial markers or manual interaction. The results of 13 landscape elements derived from software package are compared with reference data in order to analyse the accuracy and reliability of such objects in landscape design modelling.

Generation of High-Resolution 3-D Maps for Land-scape Planning and Design Using UAV Technologies

To support the decision-making process and to share ideas easily and make them quickly accessible to users, new digital tools are gradually being developed from two-dimensional and three-dimensional levels, to the fourth dimension. Traditionally, remote sensing images, including aerial (un-manned or manned) or satellite systems, are used to collect geospatial data. Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), however, have recently become a suitable technology for providing exceptionally high spatial and temporal resolution data at a lower cost than other remote sensing data. Landscape architects using UAVs for versatile flying platforms for various sensors and photogrammetric software can create 3-D models faster than traditional topographic research methods. This study aims to demonstrate the poten-tial of using UAVs for obtaining 3-D topographic data from various types of UAVs that can be used as a basis in landscape planning and design studies. This study proposes an established 3-D data generation workflow and its use in landscape design and planning applications using a fixed wing UAV with a GoPro 4 camera having 12 MP CMOS Sensor, and a quadcopter with 20 MP CMOS Sensor to collect image data for 3-D maps using photogrammetry. This study shows that UAVs provide promising op-portunities for creating high-resolution and precise images, thus making 3-D mapping easier.

Empty Parks: An Observational and Correlational Study Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs)

If a neighbourhood park fails to meet the needs of its residents usage may decrease, which potentially makes the park vulnerable to crime and social disorder. Despite the popularity of studying park visitation or park-based physical activity, there is a lack of studies on factors associated with empty parks. This study explores factors related to the underutilisation of neighbourhood parks in Salt Lake County, Utah, USA, using a novel data collection approach – unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). The findings from exploratory video analysis and inferential statistical modelling show that park programs and neighbourhood environments, as well as temporal aspects, are associated with the likelihood of empty parks. Additional analyses of no-child, no-senior, and no-female parks, respectively, support these findings. An understanding of park-use dynamics could promote effective plans, policies, and programs that promote park utilisation and park-based physical activity.

Point-Cloud Modeling: Exploring a Site-Specific Approach for Landscape Design

The paper discusses point-cloud modeling as a digital design method in the field of landscape architecture. Technological development in the last decade facilitates the acquisition and handling of high-precision 3D data collected with laser-scanning. Point-cloud modelling uses the laser-scanned data to precisely replicate and manipulate the environment in the form of 3D point-cloud models. It engages the characteristics of form and scale of a physical site and results in a transformative workflow linked to the present condition of the site. The design method employs point-cloud models as a tool of analysis, modelling and design. By representing the physical form of a place, point-cloud models may offer a return to the roots of the landscape profession, establishing a direct contact between the form of the site and the invention of the design. The method introduces a new approach in digital modelling that could make a significant contribution in crafting future landscape design solutions.

Testing Dense Point Clouds from UAV Surveys for Landscape Visualizations

The article deals with the use of point clouds datasets from UAV surveys for visualization of changes in landscape scenery. The method aims for non-biased visualization of architectural pro-posals without any artistic effects and should be used as a basis for decision making in the area con-cerned. The article proposes our workflow and tests it against photo simulation and mesh-based 3D modeling. The aim is to test, whether there are significant differences between the methods and verify, whether the process is viable.


Crowdsourcing (in) Voluntary Citizen Geospatial Data from Google Android Smartphones

By 2016 it is projected that there will be over 2 billion smartphone users worldwide with Google’s Android operating system installed on the vast majority of these devices (82.8% market share as of Q2 2015). The majority of Android smartphones sold in the last three years have GPS functionality and, unless actively disabled by the user, have a Location History feature that records the phone’s geographic coordinates at frequent intervals whenever the phone is powered on. User interaction with the device or an active display is not required for the recording of these data and as such users may be unaware of the data being collected. Google has introduced Google Maps Timeline that facilitates mapping and interacting with a user location history data via Google Maps, and also provides a service called Takeout with the explicit goal of facilitating user access to personal data held by Google, including Location History. The Location History data can be downloaded and analysed using GIS software, representing a potential step-change in Volunteered Geographic Information (VGI). This potential collective repository of geospatial data represents a key emerging geodesign technology for geographers, landscape architects and planners – if researchers and practitioners can access it. In this paper we discuss preliminary results of a research project that piloted a technique for collecting crowdsourced Google Location History data in the context of a walkability study. We provide an overview of the process and an evaluation of its strengths, limitations and challenges. Our findings indicate that data obtained from Google Location History can be of high quality and capture fine scale processes such as walking, however the quality varies depending on Android settings and decreases without a mobile data plan. We conclude with recommendations for future research and a discussion of optimal approaches for data acquisition.

Living Wall: Digital Design and Implementation

This paper documents a multi-disciplinary, research investigation and installation that con-tributes to knowledge in advanced BIM technique as applied to sustainable design. As a co-operative and academically funded project, the installation addresses the specific challenges of its hot and dry climate from the perspectives of architecture, ecology and landscape departments. The research con-veys a multi-stakeholder workflow where BIM and other visual programming platforms support the design, fabrication, construction and metric of a customized, plant and eco-habitat façade


Landscape Awareness of Childhood in Computer Games: In the Case of “Minecraft”

Technology usage has been increasing substantially across the globe. It is used not only for changing the way of development but also has important meaning for improving the standard of living. The rate of personal computer ownership has shown a large increase in comparison with previous researches conducted about the same statistics. Nowadays, in addition to resolving health problems, obtaining information and communicating with others, a great majority of people use technology and especially computers for playing video games. In terms of healthy development of a child’s life, ‘game’ which is one of the basic requirements of the childhood is vital. With the development of modern communication technologies, it seems computer games which are the most effective tools of the electronic world have become the most significant concept of a child’s social environment. Studies conducted during the recent years support the idea that computer games develop math and science skills and increase spatial information of children. At the same time, computer games are also impressive in providing children with the skills they will need in a digital world. Minecraft is one of the computer games with worldwide popularity, and its educational value associated with the exterior design via natural elements which the game provides with infinite landscapes is widely accepted. This paper aims to investigate the results of playing a computer game to support landscape awareness during the childhood in the case of Minecraft computer game and in which way this environmental awareness acquired by a child player is reflected on the game. In the study, visual analysis of outer spaces were created and player dialogues were evaluated in consideration of 45 Minecraft videos ranging in duration between 20 and 70 minutes which were recorded amongst children of male-majority. “In what way the children’s environmental awareness is processed” and “in what direction it makes progress from the beginning of the game until 20th episode” were the subjects of investigation. At this stage, landscape elements which children used and their comments about landscape were taken into consideration. As a result of the video review, it was concluded that, after satisfying their basic needs such as food and shelter, majority of players put a significant part of their efforts in landscape design of their houses. At the end of this study, an assessment analysis of evaluating the perceived landscape values and the conceptual bases underlying this approach with Minecraft game has been revealed. Also, suggestions for how the necessary conditions in children’s electronic games about outer space design can be provided in order to support the healthy development of landscape architecture were offered. The importance of this study comes in the form of emphasizing the role of computer games in children’s healthy development according to the determination of the level of scores in this game played by children.


Using Landscape Visualization to Inform Streetscape Design

The streets of commercial districts play an important role in the social fabric of communities. A well-designed streetscape provides an opportunity for thriving commerce, aesthetic enjoyment and public forum. The purpose of this study was to investigate how different elements of streetscape design influence a person’s preferences for the space. Using 3D visualizations of existing and possible future conditions, we studied the effects that infrastructure design had on perceived safety and attractiveness. Our study site was a small college town in the US. Results demonstrate that green infrastructure, including trees and bioswales, improve attractiveness and safety. Parking strategies also have an effect on safety and attractiveness – the fewer opportunities for parking, the higher the perceived safety. Participants were clear that any change would be an aesthetic improvement, but there was no strong preference between any of the non-existing conditions. 3D visualization provided an opportunity to test for perceived differences by allowing the control of environmental variables and design elements.

RISE Planetary Health Data Platform: Applied Challenges in the Development of an Interdisciplinary Data Visualisation Platform

Idea to make an application to simulate park users according to decisions/behaviors

Investigating Effects of Animated 3D Point Cloud Simulations on Emotional Responses

3D simulations are increasingly used in virtual reality laboratory experiments for measuring emotional responses in order to gain a deeper understanding of the perception and judgment of visual landscape quality. Ensuring that these simulations are valid for the intended task is crucial. We demon-strate how we tested animations of a flight into 3D point cloud models of urban areas on the subject of their possible influence on people’s arousal response. Furthermore, we provide insights into the tech-nical development and implementation of these simulations. The simulations were set up in a game engine and presented on a head-mounted display. In the experiment, one group first saw the areas in a bird’s-eye view followed by a flight down to a pedestrian view. The other group was shown the pedes-trian view only. During the presentation, arousal was assessed by measuring skin conductance response and with the Self-Assessment Manikin (SAM) questionnaire. Based on the results we can conclude that the animated flight and the perceived movement that comes with it does not affect the measured arousal response signals. However, further studies are needed to understand the response patterns to the differ-ent urban areas. Regarding the animated landscape simulation, the level of detail management of 3D point clouds needs further enhancement in order to provide more consistent transitions between the abstract landscape representation during the flight and the highly detailed perspective at ground level. Alternative approaches such as a combination of 360° videos for the flight and 3D point cloud simula-tions should be tested.


Adopting Soundscape Technology to Assess Urban Landscape Performance

This paper documents, analyses, and discusses the sound levels in Klyde Warren Park in Dallas, Texas by conducting soundscape research as part of urban landscape performance. Relevant literature is reviewed and the recent developments in digital/mobile technologies in collecting, analysing, and communicating data in relation to physical environment is summarized. Researchers applied the grid method to collect and measure the sound data (Morrilas et al. 2011). The analysis and findings reveals that varying programmed spaces of the Klyde Warren Park (KWP) produces different levels of sound pressures in different times of the day, and the week. Research also finds statistically significant difference in recorded sound pressures within the different times of the day. In conclusion, the research illustrates that the advancement of digital/mobile technologies allow landscape architects to study other dimensions of human senses/experience, specifically sounds, as part of comprehensive landscape performance studies.


A Pedagogical Retrospective: Gamifying the Konza Prairie through an Interdisciplinary Studio

Social Media

Mapping Landscape Values with Social Media

This paper investigates public landscape values and perceptions in the Eastern United States using crowdsourced data from Twitter. Tweets contain information about how people use, value, and think about their environments. We collected two months of tweets (December 2018 and January 2019) using a keyword list focused on conservation and environment terms. These data are analyzed across four contexts based on location (Global, US national capital region, and Orlando, Florida) or keywords (National Parks). We find that Twitter data enables time-sensitive landscape perceptions over a large spatial extent that may be of interest to landscape planners. In addition, we compare landscape assess-ments across multiple contexts and examine landscape values in culturally relevant places, such as parks, scenic vistas, and waterways. Finally, we discuss future methodological and theoretical direc-tions for landscape architects and planners interested in incorporating social media into research and design processes.


Crowdsourcing Environmental Narratives of Coastal Georgia using Mobile Augmented Reality and Data Collection

Both government and the research community are aware of the critical need to act in the face of climate-related coastal change, and are becoming aware that any meaningful understanding of how people perceive the future of environmental change and associated adaptations must engage the public; because public insight, when coupled with expert knowledge, will result in more locally-accurate and valid data leading to community-based vs. top-down planning. Augmented reality via mobile devices offers a modern substitute for traditional forms of communicating scientific advocacy, enabling existing knowledge to be introduced in situ and in the course of everyday life. Building on those mobile communications with collaborative features that allow people’s insights and stories to be stored and shared offers a new way to gather public opinion and insights with minimal intrusion but immediate utility in ongoing planning and decision making at both the public and expert level. We describe a publicly available mobile phone application, youARhere, being launched in McIntosh County, Georgia on the marshland coast of the south eastern United States that both communicates projected plausible environmental futures and collaborates by prompting narratives imagining history as told from the future. The stories are shared through the application and used by researchers to form a collective narrative using modern qualitative techniques that search for commonly voiced sentiments and map them onto the places of their origin. This type of information product is emerging and valuable in modern decision-making environments where inclusivity is a concern and the current gap between science and the public threatens inaction on our inevitable climate future.