Tipton Travel Award Funds Water Research in the Netherlands

Yuta Masakane, MLA 2019, received the 2018 Tipton Travel Award to help fund his research trip to study water management in the Netherlands.

The trip to the Netherlands taught Yuta about the aesthetics and the fear of water in the lowland country, he said. “As a Japanese student studying landscape architecture in Louisiana, I am interested in resilient and sustainable landscape design in coastal landscapes,” he said. “Because 25 percent of land in the Netherlands is below the sea level, I was curious about how Dutch people live with water.”

Yuta spent two weeks exploring projects related to storm water management and museums exhibiting water-related topics. “I learned that Dutch landscapes projects have multiple benefits and provide people with the aesthetics and the fear of water by its design.”

He visited projects with purposes including: storm water management, recreation, education, tourism, historic preservation, ecological restoration, and more. Most of museums with water topics showcase tangible educational exhibition as well as informational panels explaining how Dutch have struggled with flooding historically. Education about water in the Netherlands is significant because the Dutch live close to water, he said. “I was amazed the large number of children at museums. I saw many parents think that it is important to educate their children about water in the country.”

The experience helped his coursework and thesis project. “Although Louisiana also has risk of water such as floods, I thought that there are few opportunities to learn the fear of water,” he said. “I believe that landscape architects can provide opportunities that people can see, observe, and learn how water affects our environments.”

His thesis proposes a floodable deck, which is designed to be flooded when spring flood seasons for neighbors and visitors to be able to see the impact of water. Showing dynamic hydrological impacts on our environments is the key to remind people about the relationship between us and water, he asserted.

“The Tipton Travel Award gave me precious experience and inspired me to create multi-purposeful design,” he said. “Looking at different landscapes, experiencing different culture, and listening to local people can help provide a student with confidence that can be a unique background for him/her.”

Tipton Travel Award

Yuta was awarded $1,750 to use for travel by the spring 2018 semester. His application was selected from numerous submissions due to her innovative approach to his research project. He is the third student to win this annual award.

Tipton Associates is a Baton Rouge based architecture, interiors, and planning firm with a 130-year history of enhancing the quality of life for individuals and communities through its emphasis on excellent design.

“The vision for the travel award was to honor our tradition of interdisciplinary work,” said Lori Prochaska, AIA, senior associate and architect, Tipton Associates. “It is in this spirit we implore students from all of the disciplines in the LSU College of Art & Design to submit an application. Since its inception, we have been inspired by the exceptional students taking advantage of this opportunity and are grateful to be able to afford it to them.”

Led by LSU School of Architecture alumnus Ken Tipton, BArch 1981, the firm has an interdisciplinary focus; projects are about partnerships and working together with smart people to implement a shared vision. The 30 people in the Baton Rouge office approach assignments in collaborative, interdisciplinary teams that include specialists in architecture, interior design, urban planning, and landscape architecture.