Complete Landscape Architecture
Design Glossary | S-Z

landscape architecture design glossary

Use this landscape architecture design glossary to find what you need.

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S

Scenic Easement: Scenic easement is the legal means of keeping a site’s beautiful views and vistas aesthetically protected from changes to existing features without the approval of the government.

Schedules: Schedules refer to the detailed lists that are used to specify the project’s progress and may include specific timelines for separate sub-projects.

Sealcoating: Sealcoating is the process of protecting asphalt from the elements, salts, and other chemicals that can disintegrate the pavement over time.

Site Planning: Site planning is considered to be the organizational phase of the entire landscape design process. Beginning with a site analysis, site planning includes a myriad of aspects of architectural landscaping such as drainage issues, privacy, security, and soil conditions.

Softscape: Landscape architects refer to natural elements, including soil and plant life, at a site as the softscape.

Stamped Concrete: Stamped concrete is plain concrete stamped in a decorative way to add elegance to driveways, patios, and walkways.

Stylobate: Literally translated from Greek, stylobate means “column base” and is the outer foundation part of a colonnade.

Sustainability: In terms of ecology and the environment, sustainability is the ability to withstand and endure a variety of elements, some of which may not be totally conducive to life. Wetlands and forests that have withstood many centuries are examples of sustainability. Researchers and scientists are now implementing various ways of becoming more sufficient without harming the environment through the use of green technologies.

T

Terracing: Terracing is the process of creating walls for the purpose of holding soil in place on sloped landscaping.

Tetrastyle: In landscaping architecture, a tetrastyle consists of four different columns.

Theatre: A theatre is several terraces or tiers within a hillside that when grouped together resemble the curvature of outdoor seats in ancient, classic theatres.

Tonsure: Tonsure is the act of shaping evergreen plant life by the means of clipping.

Topiary: A topiary is trimmed, shaped, and formed from shrubbery into various forms and shapes.

Topographical Painting: Topographical paintings are works of landscapes that depict a realistic representation of country sides, as well as the residences of royalty and prominent aristocrats. This particular style of painting is a direct contrast to the more whimsical, imaginary depictions of nature and landscapes.

Topography: Topography generally refers to the lay of the land, more specifically the way it slopes as well as its drainage patterns. Topography may also be the science of creating charts and maps that are used to represent the surface features of an area and both its natural and man-made features.

Transportation Planning: The field of transportation planning involves the creation and placement of various types of transportation facilities ranging from streets and highways to sidewalks or lanes for bicycles.

Tufa: Scientifically, tufa refers to tiny deposits composed of flinty silica (siliceous) and calcium carbonate (calcareous) that come from either ground, lake, or spring water. Tufa may also refer to rocks made from volcanic ash but in terms of landscape architecture, the word tufa is used to indicate a rough facing stone added to the surface of structures to give them rustic appeal.

U

Urban Design: Urban design is the process or act of arranging the both the appearance and functionality of a town or city to create safe and user friendly, public spaces. A subset of urban planning, urban design is a practice that involves a number of disciplines including issues such as urban economics, social theories, and also political economy.

Urban Planning: Urban planning, as well as city and town planning are the integration of several disciplines regarding transport planning as well as land use planning. Urban planning explores a wide range of circumstances and aspects involving the environment and the surrounding communities. Urban planning might also have the primary goal of restoring or rebuilding inner city neighborhoods that have suffered from decay or lack of maintenance.

Urban Renewal: Urban renewal, sometimes referred to as urban regeneration, are programs that involve the redevelopment of land in areas of moderate to heavy urban usage. Having a large and positive impact on urban communities, urban renewal has played an important role throughout history in many cities all around the world. Despite the progress and its many supporters, some have disagreed with the practice of urban renewal citing issues such as urban sprawl, overpopulation, and the creation of too many freeways and expressways.

V

Venetian Window: These decorative windows are often referred to as either serliana or Palladian windows and are noted by their arched openings. Venetian windows are also flanked by openings with flat entablatures on either side of the arched portion along with decorative columns. The center of Venetian windows are often equipped with hinged panels that create a Venetian door when opened.

View: A view is the extended vision or prospect looking out from a site, which is often more beautiful than the site itself.

Vista: A long, unobstructed view of an open expanse such as a countryside.

W

Wetlands: Wetlands are biologically diverse sections of land that are saturated with some type of moisture either permanently all throughout the year or on a seasonal basis. Containing a wide variety of life from all of the ecosystems, wetlands may be bogs, marshes, or swamps, to name a few, that contain either freshwater, saltwater, or a combination of the two. Wetlands, which are categorized as both ecosystems and biomes, are increasingly becoming the focus of various conservation efforts.

 

 

X

Xeriscape: Xeriscape is a specific type of landscaping that is designed for regions susceptible to drought or those areas that must often follow water conservation practices.

Z

Zoning: Zoning involves designating a specific purpose for a site such as residential or commercial and entails various laws and regulations that are set forth by each municipality.

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