Date of Award

8-2009

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Landscape Architecture (MLA)

Legacy Department

City and Regional Planning

Advisor

Dyckman, Caitlin

Committee Member

Goetcheus , Cari

Committee Member

Gstach , Doris

Committee Member

Nocks , Barry

Committee Member

Sperry , Steve

Abstract

Both historically and in select areas today, local food systems are the main food supply for communities. Despite the fact that they are not a main source of food for most Americans, since the 1970s there has been a resurgence of U.S. local food systems (Qazi & Selfa, p.161). The movements exist in places where high-profile and vocal personalities (restaurateur, Alice Waters; author, Michael Pollan; or activist Carlo Petrini) also reside. This thesis examines whether the viability of the resurgence in local food systems depends on the commitment of a single person, and if not, whether those who affect the physical forms of communities, e.g. planners and landscape architects, have a role in creating and fostering the systems. Five counties (Anderson, Greenville, Oconee, Pickens and Spartanburg) of Upstate South Carolina have a local food movement, but it is a grassroots movement without a single person or organization at the helm. Without a figurehead it is not clear who is influencing, operating or facilitating the local food movement, particularly for produce. Using a mixed methodology, this study asks and answers the following question: 'What role have planners and landscape architects played in the development of the local produce network of five Upstate counties in South Carolina and what roles do they continue to play?' The initial hypothesis is that planners are unknowingly contributing to and facilitating the local food movement; landscape architects, on the other hand, are acting in reaction to the movement; they are responding to their clients' (an end user in the network) desires to add local food components to new developments. Articulation of both the planners and landscape architects' roles in the local produce network, along with dissemination of the information, will enable them to consciously guide the movement and take action in accordance with that determined direction.

Share

COinS