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WSU, UI Students to Present Work Examining Implications of Industrialization of U.S. Highway 12

MOSCOW, Idaho — WSU and UI graduate students will present videos, design visualizations, and geographical models on the theme of “MEGA: Big Visions for the Clearwater Basin.” The presentation takes place April 25 from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the 1912 Center, located at 412 East Third Street in Moscow.

Highway 12 runs along the wild and scenic Lochsa River.
Highway 12 runs along the wild and scenic Lochsa River. Click image to download high-resolution version. Image by Zoraida Etter.

The work emerged from the course the “Northern Rocky Mountain Regional Landscape,” taught by WSU associate professor of landscape architecture, Jolie Kaytes. Students examined U.S. Highway 12 and the Clearwater Basin in the light of current proposals by oil companies to use the highway as an industrial corridor.

“The projects reveal stories about biophysical conditions, ecologies, histories, controversies, land uses, wilderness and wildness, conservation, preservation, recreation and tourism, landscape processes, development, and change — the MEGA stories and issues of our place and time,” Kaytes said.

Kaytes said the students explored a wide range of questions, such as:

  • How are community and habitat defined? Are they geographical entities? What populations compose the communities and habitats along this corridor? How do those populations affect each other? How will these communities evolve and respond to change?
  • What if Highway 12 is expanded and/or becomes a permanent industrial corridor? What does this look like? How does it change the human experience of the river corridor? How will it impact regional ecologies, sacred lands, and specific species?
Visualization of an accident. Click image to download high-resolution version.
Visualization of an accident. Click image to download high-resolution version. Image by Zoraida Etter.

“The students’ projects became an opportunity for telling, or perhaps revealing, stories about the Northern Rockies, U.S. Highway 12, and the Clearwater Basin.” Kaytes said. “The project required thinking about and conveying information across disciplinary lines, and required imaginative examination and cultivation of this information.”

The event is hosted by the Friends of the Clearwater, the WSU Dept of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture, and the WSU Center for Civic Engagement. Refreshments will be served.

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Media Contacts

Jolie Kaytes, associate professor of landscape architecture, 509-335-7331; jolie@wsu.edu