Mario Schjetnan, Urban Design Group (GDU)
Sector: Private, Landscape Architecture
Mario Schjetnan is one of the world’s leading landscape architects, winner of the prestigious IFLA Sir Geoffrey Jellicoe Award 2015. His studio, GDU, appointed Neko to develop the industrial design projects for several high-profile landscape projects, including the rehabilitation of the 1st Section of Chapultepec Park, the largest park in Latin America which attracts over 15 million visitors per year.
When designing elements for landscape projects, it is vital to consider both the vision of the architect, and the needs of the space. Work began with an extensive investigation phase, researching current use, problems, requirements, studies of visitor flow and maintenance. Given the historical significance of the park and the huge number of annual visitors, it was crucial that the designs provided clear information in an unobtrusive way.
We developed a complete wayfinding system, including directional, restrictive, monumental and informative signage elements. The design was kept simple and timeless in keeping with the historical surroundings. The urban furniture designs included benches, loungers and litter bins using clean, simple lines to subtly enhance the landscape vision and improve user experience.
Material selection and imaging techniques were based on the need for durability and vandal-resistance, low maintenance, cost and ease of manufacture. They included powder-coated steel, porcelain enamel, bronze and concrete.
Multiple and varied decision makers approved the design proposals. These included park management, private investors, project managers, maintenance department, users, and the government.
We delivered a full turn-key solution, from initial investigation through to concept design, construction plans, supervision of manufacture and installation.
The Chapultepec signage project won a Jury Award from the Society for Experiential Graphic Design (SEGD) in California in 2009.
Over a decade later, the industrial and graphic design
elements in this park remain relevant and in optimal condition and were used again
in the renovation of the 2nd section in 2016.