Author Archives: bmilligan


Invitation to DredgeFest California

San Francisco Bay is the largest estuary on the U.S. West Coast, and the 2nd largest in the United States; combined with the contiguous Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta it covers a total surface area of ~4100 km2 and a watershed area of ~162,000 km2. It contains several economically significant harbors ($20 billion worth of cargo annually) […]



The engineering shockwave of Panama Canal expansion is reshaping cities throughout the Americas. We need to look through the lens of landscape, not logistics.  Full article published at Places Journal.

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DredgeFest Great Lakes

An invitation: DredgeFest Great Lakes is a symposium, field expedition, and set of speculative design workshops about the human manipulation of sediments within this region. It is an encounter between government agencies, designers, theorists, academics, corporate practitioners, industry experts, students, and the public.  DredgeFest Great Lakes runs August 14-21 2015 in Minnesota. DredgeFest Great Lakes […]


DredgeFest Louisiana

Geographer Richard Campanella has evocatively described the Mississippi River—which is North America’s largest river, discharging more than three times as much water as the next largest river in the United States—as the “land-making machine”. And, indeed, historically, this is what the Mississippi River did: it made land, building its enormous delta—the southern half of the […]

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A Megacity, with a Big Wet Hole in the Middle

[“The West Contra Costa County Landfill in North Richmond (above) is one of the largest and oldest continuously active landfills on the Bay. It ceased accepting municipal waste in 2006, although it still serves as a compost and waste processing site and as a transfer station for shipping regional trash farther inland (currently to the […]


Massively Redistributed in Space and Time

“If the earth were left alone [without human influence] on the order of eight cubic kilometers (10.5 billion cubic yards) of the material of the continents would be swept away by rivers into the ocean every year…By some estimates, about a third of this natural volume is prevented from reaching the oceans as a result […]


Migration of Landscapes

[Map of goose migration routes across North America, from Frank Bellrose’s definitive book on the subject: Ducks, Geese and Swans of North America] Migration is typically used to describe the physical movements of organisms.  Accordingly, studies of migratory patterns tend to focus on the movements of birds, fish, butterflies, wolves and other biota.  In vernacular […]