Design Studio - INTERCHANGE

Indian Village at the Calgary Stampeed, ca. 1959. Queen Elizabeth II paid her second visit to the Calgary Stampede in 1959, and made a special stop in Indian Village, where she was greeted by Chiefs from the Treaty 7 First Nations.

Studio Instructors:

Hal Eagletail
Graham Livesey
Fabian Neuhaus

Embedded Researcher:
Sandra Abegglen

University of Calgary
School of Architecture, Planning and Landscape


. Water and the Land
. Matrix and Diagram
. Circular Processes
. Knowing the Land

[UofC, SAPL, Fall 2019] This interdisciplinary senior studio focuses on aspects of urban and community design, through cross-cultural interchange/exchange. The studio project has been developed in collaboration with the Tsuut’ina Nation community adjacent to Calgary. We will engage traditional Indigenous ways of knowing and living, along with Western approaches to interpretations of design. Topics will include: Indigenous ways of knowing, landscape, mapping, community design, and sustainability. The studio will allow students in the MArch, MLA, and MPlan programs to work in interdisciplinary teams (and individually) on a culturally appropriate and sustainable urban design schemes.

This studio, while developing disciplinary skills, is also seen as a vehicle for discovery through analysis and process. The studio will explore the traditional Indigenous culture with respect to program, site analysis, cultural and social forces, technology, ecology, etc. The studio will also employ the Matrix as design tool (see section on this). The course is a studio course with an emphasis on design, visual representation techniques for documenting, analyzing, designing, and presenting using the more traditional Western techniques. Simultaneously we will explore methods and tools informed by Indigenous culture. Students are expected to use a variety of media in their design development. The studio will involve the integration of research, readings, field trips, lectures, precedent studies, etc. Handouts will be given out during the term as required.  

1.1.1 Location

The context will be the Western portion of the Tsuut’ina Nation lands and the adjoining Calgary neighbourhoods (including Lakeview, Oakridge, Cedarbrae and Woodbine). The area also includes the new ring road development (and a major interchange), Elbow River/Weaselhead Flats, and Glenmore Reservoir. This is also the site for the new TAZA development, a joint venture between the Tsuut’ina Nation and Canderel (see

1.1.2 Topic

Cross cultural apraoches to design - how to develop program and strategy between and across different cultures.

1.1.3 Focus

We are working in collaboration with the Tsuut’ina Nation.

Team Teaching Award 2020 UofC