Alternative landscaping: Reclaiming the campus

TitleAlternative landscaping: Reclaiming the campus
Publication TypeMiscellaneous
Year of Publication1990
AuthorsP. Smith, R., T. Rehder, J. Proud, C. McLaughlin, and G. Cento

This report has been prepared for presentation to the “WatGreen Committee” of the University of Waterloo. WatGreen is a campus-wide committee established in the summer of 1990, to explore the development of the campus as a laboratory, emphasizing environmental discovery through hands-on projects. On October 1, 1990 university President Dough Wright launched “Greening of the Campus”, saying that this was an opportunity “to transform [Waterloo] into a showcase of environmentally responsibility”. Work on this project began in September, 1990, in response to a perceived deficiency within the present landscaping system on campus. The purpose of this Study is to establish the feasibility of implementing alternative landscapes on the University of Waterloo campus. The Study Team identified the lack of an ecological component in the landscape decision-making process as the fundamental problem facing the University landscape. The maintenance of the present landscape required the use of fossil fuels, synthetic chemicals, and intensive watering. Not only does this contribute to air and water pollution, but these human inputs are highly inefficient in terms of energy and labour. The solution to this problem is the implementation of an ecologically-based alternative landscape which would educate the community and change perceptions about traditional landscaping on campus. The study team selected the Memorial Rock Garden on the University of Waterloo Campus as the preferred site on which to implement the alternative landscape. The Rock Garden best met our objectives in terms of educational and interactive potential which is an integral part of an ecological component. The implementation of an alternative landscape on the Rock Garden site is the first step towards a more ecologically-based landscape approach... For full text, please e-mail