MIRROR PARK – Design for Change

MIRROR PARK – Design for Change

Challenge: the re-design of an existing/neglected/underused neighborhood park, in Eugene OR.

This proposal is for a phased assessment/design/build process, to address landscape flexibility. Panarchy describes change as a feedback loop – a cycle of exploitation, conservation, release and reorganization, within a field of potential/connectedness. How to avoid landscape rigidity and its consequent catastrophic collapse? How to serve present needs and preserve futures? How to design for change?

  • MirrorPark-plan-1
  • MirrorPark-plan-2
  • MirrorPark-plan-3
  • MirrorPark-section
  • MirrorPark-view

Phase I Destruction

The park is erased to its foundational layers. Existing demarcations are used to construct two adjacent regions that represent end member possibilities for the park: pastoral, here rendered as an oak savannah remnant, and an urban civic stage.

Phase II Dialogue

2-sided rotating mirrors are installed at the juncture of the regions, offering alternately the exclusive experience of each space (mirrors positioned parallel to the plane of the dividing line) OR the experience of both spaces simultaneously (mirrors positioned perpendicularly).
Multiple possible experiences reflect spatial flexibility.

Phase III Renewal

Hardscaping, planters, chairs, tables, sit walls are introduced, constructed from an easily reconfigured and transported modular kit of parts (see “Kit of Parks”) that allows present needs to give way to those of the future with minimal disruption – elements that reflect temporal flexibility. It also allows the making of many more spatial experiences in any one construction, for example, permitting the layering of “urban” spaces within the “oak savannah”.


The proposed spatial/temporal impermanences are reinforced by the presentation. Collaged acetate layers accrete to the base board, keyed to the clearing, art installation, and various iterations constructed from the kit of parts.

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