College of Architecture and Planning

'Design Week' led by world-renowned landscape architect to focus on Muncie greenways

Students and faculty in the Department of Landscape Architecture at Ball State University are using their design skills and expertise to give back to the Muncie community. The department's annual Design Week activities will be launched on Sunday, November 22, bringing together students and faculty, community stakeholders, and professional landscape architects to explore design opportunities for Muncie's eastside.

This year's focus will be on designing the Kitselman Trailhead, connections between Cardinal Greenway and White River Greenway, and establishment of an eastside community gateway. The project area extends along East Jackson Street, and includes possibilities for the former Indiana Steel and Wire factory site and surrounding area.

Representatives from the Muncie community will play an important role in providing guidance and feedback for the design work. Among the stakeholders are Philip Tevis of the Cardinal Greenway; Angie Moyer, Delaware County Engineering; Rich Spisak, Ball Brothers Foundation; Josh Baker, East Jackson Street Merchants Association; Marta Moody, Muncie-Delaware Planning Commission; Barry Banks, Red-Tail Conservancy, and John Craddock, Community Enhancement Projects. Teams of students will be immersed in design development and refinement until final design concepts are presented on Tuesday, November 24, at 1:00 p.m. in the atrium of the Architecture Building.

This year's Design Week professional leader will be internationally renowned landscape architect Fumiaki Takano, who is coming from Japan to kick off the activities on Sunday at 1:00 p.m. After earning a master's degree in landscape architecture in 1971 from the University of Georgia, Takano worked in the United States and then returned to Japan to establish his own firm, Takano Landscape Planning Co. Ltd. with branches in Japan and Taiwan.

His projects have taken him around the world including France, China, Iraq, Korea, Pakistan, and Uganda. Takano's unique approach to design includes encouraging ideas and dreams from all ages, which he is then able to imaginatively transform into tangible built works. His creative designs have earned him numerous awards, including several "Best Park in Japan" awards by ministries of the Japanese government. His innovative park play areas have been featured in The New York Times Magazine

Takano has a local connection in that he and Muncie landscape architect Deane Rundell of Rundell Ernstberger Associates LLC previously worked together and have maintained a friendship for over 30 years. As part of the CAP Visiting Lecture Series, Takano will be presenting on his design approach and built projects at 4:00 p.m. on Monday, November 23, in room 100 of the Architecture Building (AB). His presentation is open to the public.

Rundell Ernstberger Associates LLC, a Muncie landscape architecture, land planning, and urban design firm is a sponsor of Design Week.