North Campus Open Space Master Plan
Client University of Alberta
Location Edmonton | Alberta | Canada
The North Campus of the University of Alberta has been a mainstay in the Edmonton and Alberta landscape since its inception in 1908. Over the past century, the University has grown dramatically in terms of its size and reputation as one of the world’s top public universities. The physical landscape of the North Campus is a central aspect of its character, and plays a key role in attracting new students, faculty, staff and researchers. The University understands that the character and sense of place of the North Campus landscape must be retained and enhanced. O2 Planning + Design was retained by the University to prepare an Open Space Plan for the North Campus as an appropriate means of supporting the existing open space network, and outlining opportunities for its future enhancement.
The Open Space Plan for the North Campus identifies the existing open space assets of the campus, and provides direction for ensuring these assets are properly integrated into new development, enhanced, and preserved in a manner that responds to sustainable practices. The Plan provides direction for the open space network to continue to act as the connective tissue for the overall North Campus, by balancing increased density and ongoing development, improving livability and sustainability, and reinforcing a sense of community.
The Plan addresses key issues and opportunities for a variety of character Precincts that are found on the North Campus. Building on this information, the Plan provides a number of concepts and strategic interventions that address three key components of the landscape: Landmarks, Gateways and Edges; Major Districts, Open Spaces and Nodes; and Connections and Pathways. Detailed plans and renderings are provided to assist in understanding the concept and the broader guiding principles. A number of sustainable landscape strategies are include that address topics such as: building placement, planning and design; hard landscape materials and resources; design for safety and security; vegetation renewal and restoration; and water management. The Plan provides an overall implementation program to allow the University to identify key projects and address ongoing governance and infrastructure considerations.