Great discussion of how space effects mental health and well-being, and vice versa.


Brian S. Johnston, ASLA, is the founder of Square Root Design Studio.

Recent Center for Disease Control estimates say 11 per 1,000 children in the U.S. have autism spectrum disorders (ASD), which include autism, Asperger’s syndrome, and pervasive development disorder (PDD). The numbers have increased since the 1980s, but many scientists believe this is due to changes in how the disease is diagnosed and improved public education about the disorders. You and your colleagues argue that with the increased prevalence of ASD, landscape architects must increasingly factor in the needs of people with these disorders into their designs. How do people with ASD interact with the built environment? How is this different from people without these disorders?

The main difference between people on the Autism spectrum, regardless of how severe, and neuro-typical people, is their perception of the world around them and their sense of self in space and…

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