Ted (Edward) Relph 

Place and Landscape

Homepage Last updated 3 May 2008. Place Landscape Design last updated 1 June 2006


Place Landscape Design

The Toronto City Region

21st Century Challenges 

Occasional observations about specific landscapes and books (no content yet, so no link)

contact me with any comments :




This web site is in part an overview of what has been written about place and landscape in the last thirty or so years and an expression of my current thinking about these ideas as they relate to the extraordinary challenges that I believe will be presented by the remainder of the 21st century.  I hope that that the content  will eventually become a book. 

I am also working on a possible book on the Toronto Region, and the working outline for that is included here. 

The site is a work in progress - a sort of slow-moving blog - and it currently consists mostly of outlines that I expect to fill in during the summer and fall of 2006. Some parts will probably stabilise quickly, others will be subject to repeated revision, and some may never get beyond point form. This is not ideal, but I think it might be of some value because there seems to be a growing interest in place and landscape and material about them that is currently available on the internet is fragmented and insubstantial. I hope this site can begin to correct that deficiency. 

Biographical Stuff 
I am a professor of Geography at the University of Toronto, where I have spent most of my career at the Scarborough campus which is notable for having as its main structure an architectural megastructure - a single building of massive poured concrete stretching a kilometre along the edge of a valley. It has, in ways that I cannot quite define, intruded on my consciousness. The architect was John Andrews, it was completed in 1965, and is described in many architectural texts.

 In the last five years I have overseen a substantial capital expansion on this campus, and for the ten years before that I was involved in academic administration.

My primary interests in Geography have been to do with place and landscape, from a phenomenological perspective and with an orientation to the visual (I like to use illustration but googlepages is under development and has a limit of 100MB, so I do not have many images).  I teach a large undergraduate class on Cities and Environments, and also teach in the graduate planning and urban design programme.

I have published several books and numerous papers, the most relevant of which for this site are probably:
• Place and Placelessness,
Pion, 1976 
• Rational Landscapes and Humanistic Geography
, Barnes and Noble, 1981
• The Modern Urban Landscape
, Johns Hopkins UP, 1989
• "Sense of Place" in Ten Geographical Ideas that Changed the World" ed Susan Hanson, Rutgers University Press 1998
• The Toronto Guide
1990 for the Association of American Geographers conference held in Toronto that year. This guide to Toronto's cityscapes proved to be locally popular so  I revised it several times, most recently for the Canadian Association of Geographers annual conference in 2002.  It may still be available through the Centre for Urban and Community Studies of the University of Toronto.