terrain is a landscape architecture firm based in New York City that creates award winning, ecologically integrated and socially treasured landscapes. Experience teaches us that carefully designed and conceived places have the power to positively impact the lives of individuals and communities that live, work, and play in our landscapes. terrain embraces the energy of the city and magnifies the role of nature within it, creating transformative landscape spaces.
terrain’s work is framed within an ecological context - each project, no matter its size, is part of a network of cultural and environmental connections. We actively search for opportunities to connect to and fortify local ecosystems, whether it be through the careful design of storm-water recycling systems, the thoughtful selection of materials, or the establishment of native plant communities and habitat. Equally important is the fostering of social connections and networks. Well designed landscapes have the power to bring together families, neighbors and strangers and replenish the self.
An ethos of building is integrated into our work at every stage of our design process. Our attention to craftsmanship is rooted in durability and the desire to create lasting beauty. Principal Steven Tupu has over 20 years of New York City construction experience in realizing complex, multi-disciplinary projects. With decades of collective knowledge, terrain is a valuable collaborative partner working with developers, architects, engineers, contractors and other supporting professionals. We are a firm of makers and curious individuals who together challenge assumptions of how things are designed, assembled and fabricated. Throughout our design process we continually seek smarter and more durable methods of construction. Our experience allows us to respond quickly and efficiently craft innovative and elegant design solutions within cost-effective parameters to meet demanding time-lines.
A spirit of curiosity and collaboration drives terrain’s design process. Our process is a conversation - with our clients, with users, with the site, with the larger ecological and social framework, and with our responsive network of professional collaborators. This is an active approach that is focused on enriching our communities - celebrating urban life and the natural world.
Steven Tupu is the founding principal of Terrain, an award-winning landscape architecture office based in New York. Through his creative leadership, the firm has explored ecologically robust design since 2004. With a practice rooted in the vibrancy and intensity of urban experience, Steven leads his team to richly detailed solutions that transform experiences of nature and the urban. Terrain works within an ecological context - each project, no matter its size, is part of a network of environmental and human connections. Terrain’s projects range from clean water projects in the South Pacific to communal spaces for Affordable Housing to rooftop children’s play spaces to a park for a 62-acre post industrial power station on the Salem, MA waterfront.
Hailing from Wellington, New Zealand, Steven received his Bachelor Degree in Landscape Architecture with Honors from RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia in 1993. After completing his studies, he immigrated to the United States where he accrued over 10 years of experience working for Weintraub + diDomenico and Thomas Balsley Associates. In 1999 he was awarded First Prize in the International Design Competition for the East River organized by the Van Alen Institute in NYC. In early 2004 Steven launched Terrain. Steven is a licensed Landscape Architect, registered in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania and Massachusetts.
Maggie Condon is a licensed landscape architect with over eighteen years of professional experience and an accomplished background in fine arts and film. With a love for hands on work with nature, Maggie firmly believes in the power of landscape as a transformative experience. After eleven years of experience at a large, multi-disciplinary firm, Maggie has extensive knowledge of how landscapes are built in the complex urban environment. This has translated into her special interest in material research, and constructing in highly crafted and durable methods. With experience in a fast-paced multidisciplinary environment and keen attention to detail, Maggie brings excellent communication and leadership skills to Terrain in her role as senior designer and project manager.
Maggie has a broad range of built project experience including: government work, corporate campuses, research and development, residential landscapes, entertainment districts, university campuses and urban waterfront parks. After working at HLW International Maggie started her own firm, Maggie Condon Landscape Architecture, in 2009. A frequent collaborator with Terrain, she joined the team in 2015 where her years of diverse experience help guide the team on day to day operations and in the creation of refined and durable landscapes
Brian Green grew up in the small, rural community of South Williamsport, Pennsylvania. He received his education in Washington, DC where he completed his Bachelor of Arts at American University and his Master of Landscape Architecture at Virginia Tech. After spending over 15 years in Washington, DC and New York City, Brian has a thorough understanding and appreciation of urban life and issues, as well as the landscapes of his childhood. His master’s thesis explored how landscape architects can play a larger role in the design of drinking water infrastructure.
At Terrain, Brian brings rigorous focus to construction detailing and improving interdisciplinary collaboration. A thorough researcher with a background in the legal profession, Brian has a talent for interpreting building code and public policy.
Brian is a seasoned and experienced project manager and lead the terrain team on complex and successful projects including: Peninsula Hospital Redevelopment, One Hudson Yards, Discovery Communications HQ, Morningside Gardens, and 100 Vandam, among others.
Brian is a registered landscape architect in the State of New York.
Eduardo Santamaria is a landscape designer at terrain - he received an MLA with honors from the University of Pennsylvania and a BSD in Architecture from Arizona State University. His interdisciplinary background and training in architecture, urban design and landscape architecture drive his holistic approach to design.
Eduardo’s international work experience and travels, which include Mexico, Zimbabwe, China, Qatar and Germany, provide a diverse and seasoned exposure to cultural attitudes towards landscape, materiality and construction. At terrain, he is deeply involved in the iterative design process ranging from large scale visioning to detailing.
Prior to joining terrain, Eduardo worked at !melk landscape architecture and urban design as an Associate developing large-scale international projects and at Andropogon Associates collaborating on high-profile domestic projects in Atlanta, GA and Philadelphia, PA.
Cody Erhart is a landscape designer and urban planner with experience spanning USA, Hong Kong, and Mainland China. His creative approach is grounded in research and analysis aimed to express sites’ intrinsic suitabilities and qualities. Cody believes every site, no matter how urban or small, has potential to provide ecosystem services while also meeting human needs. He currently serves as lead designer and project manager on numerous educational, mixed-use, housing, and hospitality projects.
With a childhood engrossed in world travel from an early age, Cody eventually came to find the Pacific Northwest as his home. After working domestically and abroad for some time, he attended the University of Pennsylvania and received his Master’s of Landscape Architecture with a Certificate in Urban Design. Prior to joining Terrain, he was an expat urban designer and planner involved on large-scale civic infrastructure works, urban waterfront studies, and new town developments. His work on the ‘Hung Shui Kiu New Development Area Planning & Engineering Study’ has won a Silver Medal from the Hong Kong Institute of Planners, the (U.K.) Royal Town Planning Institute Award for Planning Excellence, and a Special Citation from the Hong Kong Institute of Urban Design.
He is also the recipient of an ASLA Honor Award from the ID-MT Chapter ASLA.
Rebecca is committed to merging her comprehensive knowledge of native ecosystems with the aesthetics of urban design. Her background in art has fostered an ability to place design in a theoretical and historical context. Trained with a concentration in ecological restoration, Rebecca has a unique understanding of complex plant systems and their native flora communities and aims to bring that functional understanding to everyday life in the urban environment. At Terrain, she serves as a designer and project manager, working on institutional, commercial, public, and affordable housing projects.
Rebecca previously worked as a landscape designer at STIMSON in Massachusetts and was an adjunct professor at Temple University in the Department of Landscape Architecture + Horticulture.
Rebecca holds an Master of Landscape Architecture from Temple University and a Bachelor of Art in Art History from the Tyler School of Art. She was the recipient of the ASLA Graduate Student Honor Award.
Anita Nai-Tzu Cheng
Anita Cheng is a landscape designer with a background in architecture. Born and raised in Taipei, Taiwan, Anita has spent many years living in Austin, TX and Boston, MA before moving to New York City. Before joining Terrain, she just completed her Master of Landscape Architecture from Harvard Graduate School of Design. During her summer while in the graduate school, Anita participated in the Yucatan Initiative Fellowship where she worked with Mexican federal housing agency on a public space design proposal that seeks to preserve the cultural identity and patrimony of Mexico.
Her interests in landscape architecture focus on fostering cultural and social identity through place making as well as establishing ecological and experiential public realms in the urban context. She hopes to bring her cross-disciplinary background to better communicate between architecture and landscape architecture.
With a Bachelor of Science in Architecture from Northeastern University, Anita was previously a staff architect at Francke French Architects in Boston where she worked on several single- and multi-family residential projects.
Joe Norman grew up in Wellington New Zealand, where he completed an honors degree in spatial design at Massey University. As part of Joe’s studies he took the opportunity to study abroad where he took courses in both landscape architecture and interior architecture at the University of Wisconsin Madison.
His honors thesis explored how informal pockets of nature within an urban context can greatly effect the biodiversity experienced within cities and assist in the redefinition of what we understand is nature. This project received an award for design communication and was published in The Artichoke magazine, an Australian interior architecture and Design Magazine, this project was also a finalist for the New Zealand best awards in spatial design.
At Terrain, Joe brings a fresh new perspective on design trends defined by his studies in landscape architecture, interior architecture and spatial design.
Sophie Roberts grew up in Tauranga, a small city in the country of New Zealand. She received her education in Auckland, New Zealand where she completed her Bachelor of Design, majoring in spatial design at Auckland University of Technology. After graduating Sophie received Auckland University of Technology Internz scholarship to travel to New York and begin her work with Terrain. Her final year project explored the relationship between New Zealander’s and their native plants. Set in the context of a quarry shaped fern garden, she created an archive scheme showcasing native New Zealand plants set in resin blocks that formed a semi-transparent interior space.
At Terrain, Sophie brings a fresh focus to how a human body identifies with space. She has eye for texture and pattern, creating unique spaces that play with materiality. Prior to joining Terrain, Sophie completed an internship at The Development Collective, an architecture firm in Auckland, New Zealand.
Daniela Amador joined terrain as the office administrator in January of 2018. Daniela wears many hats at terrain and assists with all daily operations. Daniela holds a BFA from SUNY Purchase.
Prior to terrain, she worked in Business Development and Real Estate. Daniela was the exclusive agent for one of the largest personal injury law firms in New York State. Daniela was born in Tegucigalpa, Honduras and raised in West Palm Beach, Florida. Daniela grew up by the beach with a family full of artists that inspired her to pursue a life full of creating. Her interests include writing, walking, and Latin music.