The New American Garden
The Chicago Botanic Garden is located, oddly enough, a good 40 miles from that city in the suburb of Glencoe, Ill.  And although it is specifically named for the Midwest’s greatest city and might seem a municipal endeavor, it is actually maintained by private donations and serves to display the entire region’s rich flora and scenic beauty.   The garden is organized around a large body of water known as the Great Basin, which was created some 60 years ago by dredging the area and diverting the Skokie River to create a series of islands and lagoons.  The largest island, known as Evening Island, was the initial focus of our work in redesigning the space. My firm, Oehme, van Sweden and Associates of Washington, D.C., became involved in the project