LACF Awards $50,000 in Research Grants in 2023

Landscape Architecture Canada Foundation (LACF) is pleased to announce the recipients of funding in the 2023 Research Grants Program in support of research, communication and scholarship. This year, 6 professional awards and two student awards were approved by the jury.

The grants awarded for 2023 cover a broad range of topics and tackle issues important to the profession. The proposals were adjudicated and awarded by a National Jury composed of six individuals from public, private and academic practices areas, representing the different regions of Canada.

According to Ed Versteeg, APALA, FCSLA, Chair of the 2023 Research Grants Jury:

LACF is proud to continue our support of professional and student landscape researchers. This year 7 grants totalling $47,500 will support the exploration of urgent issues including the decolonization of landscapes, restoration of landscapes, and documenting the history of the profession. Grant applicants demonstrate a vital awareness of contemporary issues affecting Canadian landscapes and merit our strongest support.

Learn more about the jury.

Click on the grant number to learn more about these projects.

2023 Grants Recipients

#179 Landscape Strategy Handbook: An installation guide and management plan for Jardin de bord de mer

Rosetta S. Elkin

Awarded $10,000, and recipient of the Donald Graham Bursary

This project addresses the consequences of climate change in rural Quebec: the ongoing retreat of communities away from the shoreline. We are working in the municipality of Sainte-Flavie by engaging and valuing the land that is left behind; specifically, by relying on the adaptive capacity of plant life to address extreme shoreline erosion. By emphasizing plants, the landscape of retreat celebrates change by transforming abandoned private lots into vibrant public spaces. Jardin de bord de mer is part of an inclusive fabric that transforms the shoreline along the Saint Lawrence River estuary and strengthens it for an uncertain future. 

#180 So I Decided

Elspeth Holland

Awarded $6,500 and recipient of the Gunter Schoch Bursary

So I Decided is a podcast about changemakers who found their way through landscape architecture to eventually make a positive impact on the world around them. In each episode, interviews with changemakers will reveal their personal stories, decisions towards taking creative action, and lessons learned along their journey. The title So I Decided is inspired by how people speak about pathways they have taken in their life. Through sharing their stories and methods, this podcast hopes to create transparency around trajectories in landscape architecture and help inspire the next generation of changemakers to pursue their goals in Canada and beyond.

#181 DECOLONIZING THE ARBORETUM: Indigenous Tree Interpretation and Language Keeping in Allan Gardens

Matt Canaran, Friends of Allan Gardens

Awarded $10,000

Allan Gardens is an important gathering place for the urban Indigenous community in Toronto. Indigenous people come to this park for ceremony, storytelling, remembrance, and celebration. The Friends of Allan Gardens wish to support the Indigenous community’s cultural reclamation through the development of a tree interpretation and language keeping project in the park. Tree names and stories will be thoughtfully shared in multiple Indigenous languages based on counsel from community Elders and Knowledge Keepers. This project encourages everyone in the park community to engage with Indigenous language learning, ensuring these words are heard, seen, and felt on this land, forever. 

#182 Native Plant Procurement in the Landscape Industry: Understanding Barriers, Challenges, and Issues with Initial Recommendations for New Best Practices 

Karen May / Plant Architect Inc.

Awarded $6,000

This is a proposal to study and compile the challenges of transforming the native plant supply within the nursery trade in Ontario, from the perspective of landscape architectural practice, in service of improving the supply of diverse, source-identified native plants available to designers. Through interviews, case studies, and literature review, this will become a resource for shared understanding and discussions on how to advance the profession’s response to the biodiversity crisis. This proposal leverages the inherent interdisciplinarity and collegiality of our work; it harnesses real-world experience and knowledge into transformative practical recommendations, expanding our capacity to collaborate across disciplines.

#183 A Decolonizing Design Case Study - Riverside Road

Kristina Zalite, Prospect & Refuge Landscape Architects

Awarded $10,000

A collaboration between Prospect & Refuge Landscape Architects, Modern Formline Design, and Ron Hart Architecture. We are exploring how decolonization influences the design process, and how the new approach addresses social and environmental challenges such as local climate conditions and community health. 

This is an applied-research case study of a new supportive housing site for BC Housing on Matsqui and Sumas First Nations. Research methodology includes interviews, workshops, and theoretical research. 

The outcome will be an illustrated article and virtual presentation, targeting designers and clients who seek inclusive, equitable, and creative approaches to design. LACF will be recognized.

#184 Lake Osisko: re-enchanting this common good

Florian Satger

Awarded $2,500

In Rouyn-Noranda, the inhabitants have expressed their desire to reconnect with their lake. This design project explores contemporary urban issues to find answers to the loss of links between the city and its territory. It is in this context that Florian explores how landscape architecture can participate in reviving these links. He investigates areas of relationship between humans and their environment through design approaches and methodologies that place transitions, articulations and interrelationships at the heart of the landscape project.

#185 Broken Landscape/New Landscape

Timothy Bailey Edwards

Awarded $2,500 and recipient of the Northern Research Bursary

In designing a post-remediation landscape on Giant Mine, outside Yellowknife, NWT, I will be examining how design can help bridge the gap between goals and outcomes in mine closure. The significance of meeting environmental and socio-economic goals in minesites in the North, and around the world, can not be understated. Orphaned and abandoned mines litter Canada’s three territories, with various degrees of hazard, and more are set to be built. Right now, mine closure activities are firmly considered engineering exercises. In creating this project, I will help make a case for the involvement of landscape architects in mine closure projects.

#186 Frances McLeod Blue Collection / Fund

University of Guelph Archives

In commemoration of Frances Blue's generous bequest to the Landscape Architecture Canada Foundation, LACF contributes $1000 annually to the Centre for Canadian Landscape Architecture Archives at the University of Guelph Library. In July 2019, an additional $1,500 was contributed to this fund. The Frances McLeod Blue Collection can be found in the Centre for Canadian Landscape Architecture Archives.