Steps in landscape

The most extensive ramped and stepped construction ever made is the roadway which surmounts the Great Wall of China (Figure 5.13a), the only human construction said to be visible from the Moon. The design embraces a defensive wall, backed by a 4.5 m paved surface, either ramped or set out as stepped ramps in the steeper sections. The materials employed are largely brickwork. The undulating lengths involve all forms of inclined surfaces, ramps, zig zag climbs, curved and wide spaced steps, a source of ideas for every other form of hilly path in the landscape (Figure 5.13b).

The conversion of private gardens into a public domain can cause problems - not least the lack of guard rails, as seen at Lindisfarne Castle now owned by the National Trust (Figure 5.14). At present this detail is covered by a warning notice and adequate insurance. Matters were just as problematical after Lutyens' improvements had been completed in 1908. The following quotation is from a letter to his wife, Lady Emily concerning a visit by the Prince of Wales (later King George V). The Prince 'was terribly alarmed at the gangways up and wanted a wall built. I told him we had pulled one down and that if he really thought it unsafe we would put nets out. He thought that very funny'.

Figure 5.7f Italiante detail: Footspace in relation to garden steps
Figure 5.8 Grass steps, Town Hall, Seinajoki, Finland (Alva Aalto)

Monumental steps in landscape are usually associated with Baroque grandeur: Caserta, Chatsworth and Versailles are illustrated as typical (Figure 5.15a-c). The main vista at Caserta is almost a mile in length, constructed as a canal

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Usually 150 mm difference (exterior to interior level) stone or pre-cast concrete or brick on edge (girth 600-700 mm)

Figure 5.9a Simple steps outside buildings: Basic form of door step with waterfalls and water steps decorated by fountains and sculpture. It is certainly inspired by Grillet's cascade at Chatsworth, a fraction of the scale deployed at Caserta but still faithfully capturing the delight of water steps as an

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Figure 59b Basic ramped entry

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Figure 5.9a Simple steps outside buildings: Basic form of door step

Figure 59b Basic ramped entry

Figure 5.9c Combined pattern. New entry steps at RIBA HQ, London, 1980s, Architect: J. Carey

umbilical thread in landscape (Figure 5.15b).

The Sun King's domain portrayed by the park at Versailles has within it the symbolic elements of the state, the farm, forest, lake, river and the city, represented by the enfolding wings of the royal palace. The terraces provide a vast dais as to a throne, the edges become castle walls broken by vast stairs that open the view to the horizon (Figure 5.15c). The detail that links each parterre within the 'dais' are kerb pro-

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Figure 5.10a Direct flight steps: Basic dimensions

Figure 5.10b Direct flight steps: Ramp blocks files that match the treads and risers to the terrace steps and in turn to the plinth mould of the Palace of Versailles (Figure 5-154)- A superb monumental detail of steps in landscape architecture-

Homeowners Guide To Landscaping

Homeowners Guide To Landscaping

How would you like to save a ton of money and increase the value of your home by as much as thirty percent! If your homes landscape is designed properly it will be a source of enjoyment for your entire family, it will enhance your community and add to the resale value of your property. Landscape design involves much more than placing trees, shrubs and other plants on the property. It is an art which deals with conscious arrangement or organization of outdoor space for human satisfaction and enjoyment.

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