Best Urban Landscaping

University of Arizona

One of us at the Weekly took a picture several years ago just outside the Arizona State Museum. It looks southwest, past a row of flowers leading up to the front steps of the museum building, at a lone student studying in the shade of a tree. The sun is shining as gently rolling hills of emerald-green grass give way in the distance to the rock wall that separates the university from Main Gate Plaza. The picture exudes a sense of calm and quiet, even though frat boys were probably driving in SUVs with their music cranked just beyond that wall. Still, that's how we'd like to think of the UA's urban landscaping--an oasis in the middle of a sprawling metropolis.

Runners up:

2. Tohono Chul Park, 7366 N. Paseo Del Norte, 575-8468,

3. Tucson Botanical Gardens, 2150 N. Alvernon Way, 326-9686,