Here are just five of the many interesting landscape trends ‘World Landscape Architect’ predict in 2017.

Climate Adaptation
The discussion around climate change in the media is still revolving around the issue and less around solutions. However, in recent time in research and landscape practice, we are seeing more intense discussion around solutions including climate adaptation. In the future we will see more research, competitions and projects using elements of climate adaptation to create holistic design solutions the world faces with the increasing environmental pressures of climate change. Urban spaces will be designed utilizing the opportunities they present to adapt to climate change.

Alternative Transport Modes
As people increasingly embrace ride-sharing and the race for autonomous vehicles (cars, trucks, buses) increases between established car companies and start-up tech companies, we’ll see governments developing initiatives and regulations to address these new technologies and how spaces and services are designed. Autonomous vehicles and ride sharing will reduce the need for wide road lanes, car parking, but require an increase in the number and size of areas required for drop-off and pickup of riders at airports, train/subway stations, offices, retail districts, tourist precincts and more. Cities will also look to use the reduced car lanes widths to provide space for bike lanes and other alternative transport (yet to be designed).

Rural Remedies
Rural areas will continue to be the food source for local and international populations (local & export) however, rural towns will have to address their declining populations as farm sizes increase and technology allows more efficient farming turning to tourism, research, technology and other yet to develop industries. Sadly, rural & forested areas in both developed and developing nations will continue to deforest vast areas in the push for farmland due to the increase in demand for land to be used for livestock and crops (food & forestry).

Nature will continue to play an important role in landscape architecture as practitioners will continue to be inspired and create designs that emulate and mimic nature. An increasing trend will be to use the natural messiness of nature in a structured manner to create beautiful landscapes.

Residential Landscapes
People will continue to wish to use their gardens as places to relax and increasingly use the spaces for entertaining with new technology including; OLED lighting, cordless audio, wi-fi, with features such as low maintenance fire pits, water features, green walls (sadly fake green walls is increasingly being used). There will also be the continued push for no to low-maintenance gardens (something of an oxymoron) which will see the increased use of artificial surfaces and also the push towards autonomous electric lawnmowers and weeders. Overall, there will be more design emphasis on local elements and varying textures shying away from the clean and slick.

These are just a few of the trends that will be influenced by landscape architects and vice-versa.Landscape architects view the future as bright and hold the key to the world’s problems by using their wide ranging skills, knowledge and expertise to find the solutions to these problems.

For the complete list, please visit WLA., by Damian Holmes, Founder & Editor of World Landscape Architect