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Building on the Legacy of the Past: An Exploration into Monroe Park's Past, Present, and Future.
Increasingly, we are faced with the finite nature of space in the urban context. We struggle with a desire to preserve ties to the past and our need to create spaces that are relevant to current circumstances and contemporary social and cultural ideas. This thesis explores the possibilities of an approach to design which embraces both change and continuity, adding a new chapter to the legacy of a given place. An understanding of history as a process of development running continuously from past to present, rather than as a series of specific moments in time, provides a broader view of the ways in which the past is connected to the present. The inclusion of change as part of the past opens the way for new changes which continue the process of development. An exploration of Richmond, Virginiaâ s Monroe Park, leading to a proposed redesign of the park, provides a case study for this approach. A combination of historical research, analysis of current circumstances, and design investigations culminates in a proposed design for Monroe Park which provides continuity with the past, embraces the present, and presents possibilities for the future.