livingLAB is a collaborative landscape architecture and planning studio focused on community-driven design and project realization. We are focused on the core practices of open space planning and landscape design; pedestrian and bike safety and mobility; community engagement and collaboration; stormwater management and green infrastructure; and sustainable urban design. Everything we do is underpinned by the belief that, to the greatest extent feasible, the built environment should function and provide ecological services akin to natural systems. We are inspired by the outcomes of our efforts in these core areas because of their direct impact on the community.
Our studio, located within the sustainable professional community of the Green Garage in Midtown Detroit, is always abuzz with creative energy. We believe that the nature of our open-format design studio, coupled with a dedication to community outreach and engagement, supports better project outcomes through collaboration. We enjoy working with communities using our mobileLAB process, where we mobilize our entire studio into the neighborhood. On the road, we lead an intensive design charrette spanning several days to a week. mobileLAB includes the community throughout our entire schematic design process culminating in a design that is owned and created by the community it serves.
Our studio and design practice are based on the following principles:
- Creativity must be at the core of everything we do.
- Mind the triple bottom line. We place equal value on being profitable, being socially responsible and supporting our communities, and implementing sustainable environmental practices.
- Support a flexible, team approach to every project. We understand and appreciate that each community, neighborhood, and project is different!
- Bring a broad range of services to the table to help our clients meet their goals. And if we don’t specialize in it, we find partners who do.
- Value the relationship: be that with a client, collaborator, stakeholder, or resident.
- Love what we do. It will show in our projects and plans.
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Jason P. Macdonald
lead landscape architect
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Courtney R. Piotrowski
principal landscape architect
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Leah M. Groya
lead professional planner