LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE FOR COMMUNITY REVITALIZATION
rooted in landscape
we weave culture, nature, place,
design is our seed
Io LandArch is a Landscape Architecture and Urban Design Studio specializing in community revitalization through historic preservation, creative placemaking, and outdoor recreation. Our work is focused on the continuation of regional narrative, weaving history, ecology, culture and meaning together for projects that evolve from and advance the spirit of the intermountain west.
At Io LandArch we've developed a signature approach to our planning and design work that we call Grassroots Design. Grassroots Design is a philosophy, process, and metaphor that combines the disciplines of Planning, Urban Design, and Landscape Architecture with community advocacy, sustainable agriculture, and deep ecology resulting in economically, socially, and ecologically vibrant places.
Designed with Nature
Our design process and designs are fluid and adaptable. They are function driven as much as they are form-driven, because form follows nature.
Communities that feel connected through shared narratives, culture, and historical places have a greater sense of meaning, pride, and are more resilliant over time.
We design projects that can be implemented in phases and evolved over time to changing community needs and market forces.
We encourage collaboration and community participation in both the planning and implementation processes.
Extreme Home Makeover: Home Edition
The Swan Commercial Property
The Warner House
Anchored Roots Montessori Playground
The Camp at Ogden
Wilbur & Son Blacksmith
Beaver Equestrian CenterAgriculture Community Revitalization Outdoor Recreation
Logan Arts Master PlanCommunity Revitalization Creative Placemaking
On The River’s Edge CompetitionAgriculture Community Revitalization Creative Placemaking
Healy House Garden
The Corner Plaza
Center Street Historic District StandardsCommunity Revitalization Historic Preservation
community revitalization from the ground up
The preservation and adaptive re-use of historic places results in places that are sustainable, but also inherently incremental, inclusive, and successful communities. Our research and advocacy focus on the culture, traditions, and stories from our shared past to provide connection, context, and meaning. Our work moves beyond isolated buildings to encompass historic districts, historic and cultural landscapes.
Creative placemaking integrates the arts with both traditional and innovative urban design techniques to provide opportunities for creative individuals and organizations to thrive, create a sense of community, celebrate and build on the unique cultural history of an area, provide for the development of physical infrastructure including public art, and provide real economic returns.
Our designs for outdoor recreation result in powerful physical and emotional experiences that provide an impetus for the protection of our natural resources. The economy of the West is changing from an extractive, industrial (railroad) one to an intensive use-based one (outdoor recreation), that if sustainably managed can allow for continued use and preservation over time.
Every great community is comprised of neighborhoods and homes with history, context, and character. We specialize in residential design services for historic homes and in-fill development. We work with home-owners who want their yards to be ecologically friendly, waterwise, and offer localized food production.
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There are many parallels between historic home restoration and community revitalization – here are five lessons.
The History of Washington Square in Historic Salt Lake City
We recently had the opportunity to volunteer, by providing Landscape Architectural services for two very deserving families, on the hit TV show “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition”! The episodes are 1002 and 1003 and we are looking forward to seeing them air in January 2020 on HGTV! In case you haven’t’ seen the show (seriously, who[…]
In the process of re-building a historic home, we also became part of a larger community re-building process. Through blood, sweat, and tears, and a literal baptism by fire, we became old-house restoration experts, and at the same time, grassroots community advocates. For us, our home restoration and the revitalization of this amazing place have been parallel narratives, narratives that began with looking past the outer layer of decay and blight and truly believing in the potential of a place; willingness to work hard and apply hours upon hours of sweat equity; and making slow but steady incremental improvements that have an exponential impact over many (so many) years.
Over the course of 20 years of professional and individual community engagement, we’ve been to a LOT of different types of public meetings. The best ones are creative and fun with active involvement of participants. They actually work to make a project better. The worst ones are boring, limit community feedback, or worse–collect feedback and[…]
We’re proud to unveil our new logo! The name Io stems from Greek mythology. Io was a demi-goddess represented by a white heifer. As a woman-founded design practice we deliberately chose the name based on its strong female archetype and also its agricultural symbolism. We have both personal ties to small-scale community agriculture and a[…]
The documentation and preservation of Historical Landscapes represents a relatively new and frequently misunderstood branch of the preservation movement. The following are the 4 types of historic landscapes have been defined by the United States Park Service (Preservation Brief 36)
This article by Io principal Susan Crook was published in the June 2014 Union Vedette, the newsletter of the Fort Douglas Military Museum. Stilwell Field has played an essential role at Fort Douglas from the founding of the post on October 20, 1862 to the present stewardship of the Fort Douglas National Historic Landmark (NHL)[…]
The Athena Award is a prestigious award that recognizes inspiring women, including our Principal Landscape Designer, Shalae Larsen. As a women-owned business (whose name is informed by Greek mythology) and whose mission it is to create sustainable, vibrant communities while mentoring the next generation of female landscape architects, Io Landscape Architecture is pleased to congratulate[…]
Io is excited to announce our new location, in the Historic Scowcroft Mansion at 795 24th Street, in Ogden’s historic Trolley District. As a Landscape Architecture firm that specializes in Historic Landscapes, historic landscape documentation, preservation, adaptive re-use, as well as historically appropriate new landscapes – we are excited about our new home and its[…]