Radical Common Sense

Radical Common Sense

Sustainability is grounded in common sense, or more appropriately, a vigorous “sense of the commons.” Through our planning and community-building processes, we find common threads where many people can agree, and seek the radical, simple idea that may have been overlooked. VIA uses this idea of “radical common sense” with our clients to create a viable pathway to transform places, first by identifying our shared values and then acting in accordance with them.

  • Club Intrawest Desert Willow
  • Portland Milwaukie Light Rail Sustainability
  • Putrajaya Monorail
  • Southeast False Creek Master Plan
  • In California’s Coachella Valley, we designed Desert Willow as a sustainable resort fitting into an ecologically sensitive desert climate.
  • Through creative use of grading design, we were able to create both hillside and hollows, adding to an otherwise level landscape. The collection of stormwater in a created basin became not only a cost-saving sustainable site strategy, but also a water feature that became an attractive resort asset, and ultimately a model for future development.
  • For Portland’s TriMet, we addressed the challenge of making a newly constructed rapid transit line not only sustainable, but restorative, and a positive net benefit to its community.
  • The strategies utilized on this project will generate large cost savings in propulsion energy; restore habitat in adjacent riparian corridors, and demonstrate new models of community investment by a transit agency.
  • This Malaysian transit project was designed to support mobility, community gathering, and local industry.
  • In a City with a hot and humid climate, creative approaches to ventilation and underground station cooling leveraged natural thermal processes and saved substantial capital cost on the system’s infrastructure.
  • Creative thought applied to the urban design, station entrances, and materials specifications also bolstered the city’s evening street life and generated economic development opportunities.
  • We developed the initial Official Development Plans for Vancouver’s “Model Sustainable Community.” Our process helped to demonstrate that the fiscal implications of sustainability could be positive.
  • Phase One served as the 2010 Athletes village and is now a LEED Platinum Neighborhood. The rapid build-out of subsequent phases has confirmed the value (and affordability) of VIA’s master planning approach, from both investor and consumer perspectives.