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Landscape of highways

This essay is based on work undertaken at Yale University, Department of City Planning. Tim Pharoah was part of a team looking at the analysis and design of landscape for major highways. The project itself was undertaken for the State of Connecticut with the title "Highway as Environment" and was published in 1971.

Very often the landscaping of highways is considered from the viewpoint of "how does the road fit within the landscape". This project, however, was based on the realisation that most people will be viewing the landscape from the road, not the other way round.

The inspiration came from the 1964 book "The View from the Road" by Donald Appleyard, Kevin Lynch and John Myer (a seminal work which is now rare and fetches high prices).

The Transportation Research Board Library entry for the Yale research report is: Accession number: 00261208

The report describes several methods that may have application in the location and design of proposed highways and the improvement of existing facilities with respect to their relationship to the environment. Data on driver response to visual features has led to the development of a model-making and a photographic technique that might be used to test design proposals for improved safety, serviceability and the effect on the environment. Case studies of four highway types, were used to identify the features significant for the highway user, adjacent property owners, and the community. Proposed design changes and controls are outlined.

Prepared in cooperation with the Federal Highway Administration, Washington, D.C. and the Connecticut Department of Transportation, Bureau of Highways.

Author(s)Tim Pharoah


View from the road, highways, landscape, landscaping, "Highway as Environment"

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A sketch from the essay

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