Kate Orff, RLA, FASLA
Founding Principal, SCAPE

Kate OrffKate Orff, RLA, FASLA, is the Founding Principal of SCAPE, a landscape architecture and urban design firm based in New York City and New Orleans. She focuses on retooling the practice of landscape architecture and urban design relative to the uncertainty of climate change and creating spaces to foster social life. Orff is known for leading complex, creative, and collaborative work processes that advance broad environmental and social prerogatives.

In 2019, Orff was elevated to the American Society of Landscape Architects Council of Fellows, and in 2017, she was awarded the prestigious MacArthur Fellowship–the first given in the field of landscape architecture. She is also a Professor and Director of the Urban Design Program at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation, where she co-directs the Center for Resilient Cities and Landscapes. Orff is the author of Toward an Urban Ecology (2016), co-editor and author of Gateways: Visions for an Urban National Park (2011), and co-author, with Richard Misrach, of Petrochemical America (2012).


Oyster-tecture proposes a living reef composed of a woven web of ‘fuzzy rope’ that supports marine growth, generates a 3D landscape mosaic that attenuates waves and cleans millions of gallons of harbor water by harnessing the biotic filtration processes of oysters, mussels, and eelgrass. Image courtesy of SCAPE.