Leveling the Landscape: Landscape Performance as a Green Infrastructure Evaluation Tool for Service-Learning Products.
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As part of the ongoing recovery from catastrophic flooding associated with Hurricanes Harvey and Florence, communities along the U.S. Atlantic and Gulf Coasts must plan for adaptations that integrate resilience into the redevelopment of community spaces. In designing resilient community spaces, particular consideration must be paid to socially vulnerable communities. Community visioning and neighborhood-scaled design is the first step in the development process. However, it can be a hurdle for communities that lack the capacity to conduct and evaluate such work collaboratively. Service-learning projects implemented through university-community partnerships can help communities increase resilience by developing master plans. The products generated through service-learning projects often conclude at the conceptual level, with no evaluation of the feasibility of their implementation. This study examines the use of landscape performance models in evaluating proposed master plan parameters. It is situated in Manchester, a community in Houston that is physically and socially vulnerable to flooding. Findings demonstrate that landscape performance models can objectively evaluate the costs and performance measures of service-learning products rooted in local conditions and community feedback.