Title page for ETD etd-0528102-105721

Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Neil, Elizabeth Errett
Author's Email Address eneil1@lsu.edu
URN etd-0528102-105721
Title Open Space for the Public: An Evaluation of Designed Open Spaces on Urban University Campuses
Degree Master of Landscape Architecture (M.L.A.)
Department Landscape Architecture
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Raymond Isaacs Committee Chair
Sadik Artunc Committee Member
Van Cox Committee Member
  • urban universities
  • campus design
  • public universities
Date of Defense 2002-04-30
Availability unrestricted
A public university that is perceived as being physically open and accessible to the general public can help promote a better relationship between the city and the university. Public urban universities have a responsibility to provide usable, accessible open space for the public. Universities and designers recognize the importance of integrating their campus into the community and creating spaces for students that allow for outdoor and social activities. However, little attention has been given to the need to provide spaces that allow for outdoor and social activities for the public.

The public urban university was used as a model because as a public institution it has an obligation to provide usable open space for the public and it has a captive audience in its immediate surroundings. Two types of spaces were evaluated: entrances/gateways and park-like spaces. Nine characteristics were established, from site visits and readings, as a framework in which to evaluate the accessibility and usability of each space for the public.

The methods for this thesis were established to observe, evaluate, and understand outdoor spaces using literature, site visits, and personal interviews. The nine characteristics were applied to each space and were then evaluated their effectiveness in creating an accessible space. Each campus space was analyzed and I determined why or why not the space is perceived as accessible to the public.

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