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Landscape architects and citizen participation: A study of the Boston Southwest Corridor (1976-1986)

Katherine Crewe, University of Massachusetts Amherst


This dissertation examines the responses of landscape architects to citizen participation while working on the Boston Southwest Corridor, a multi-purpose transportation project which involved landscape architects between 1976 and 1986. Conclusions were drawn from interviews with twenty-three landscape architects who were involved on the project, and interviews of an additional twenty consultants and residents. In addition, the source material relative to the project was researched. Findings reveal that landscape architects had responded in a variety of ways to citizen participation depending on the location, and the income level of the community involved: three areas were noted, the gentrifying and relatively affluent South End of Boston, the low income and high minority Roxbury/Mission Hill area, and the middle-income sections of Jamaica Plain and Forest Hills. Landscape architects' various approaches to design and design creativity are discussed, with assessments given as to their relations to citizen participation. The dissertation concludes with recommendations that landscape architects acknowledge the role of citizen participation as part of their practice, based not only on their experiences with the Southwest Corridor, but also on their professional priorities as revealed during interviews.

Subject Area

Landscaping|Political science|American studies

Recommended Citation

Crewe, Katherine, "Landscape architects and citizen participation: A study of the Boston Southwest Corridor (1976-1986)" (1997). Doctoral Dissertations Available from Proquest. AAI9809322.