Computer Laboratory

Located on the 4th floor of Kennedy Hall next door to the studio space, the Department of Landscape Architecture’s Computer Lab provides students with a full suite of the most recent, industry-leading graphic software products for drafting, 3D modeling, and design visualization. The Lab contains 15 PC workstations, widescreen projection capabilities as well as two 42” large-format plotters. Students can work in the Lab 24/7, either in person or by requesting remote access to individual computers.

In addition to providing a wide range of standard products like Microsoft Office, our Lab computers are equipped with the most advanced applications used in the field of landscape architecture:

  • ArcGIS: used to create, analyze, manage, and share geographic information
  • ArcScene: for viewing GIS data in 3D
  • AutoCAD: computer-aided design and drafting
  • Civil 3D: design and drafting software application that supports a range of site engineering tasks
  • Illustrator: vector-based graphics editing
  • InDesign: desktop publishing and page layout
  • Lumion: Cutting-edge image rendering and animation
  • Photoshop: raster graphics editing
  • After Effects: digital visual effects and motion graphics editing
  • Premiere Pro: timeline-based video editing
  • Revit: building information modelling software
  • Rhinoceros: commercial 3D computer-aided design application
  • SketchUp: 3D modeling and visualization

Student Laptop Recommendations

While it provides and maintains a high-end computer lab, the Department recommends students have their own computers. Students are strongly encouraged to purchase a personal laptop computer compatible with all relevant design and 3D modeling programs used throughout the curriculum. In addition, students should ensure adequate computer capacity to accommodate extensive file storage and new software releases.

In addition to a personal laptop, students should plan to acquire the following programs:

  • Adobe Creative Cloud: featuring Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign and a broad range of Adobe products, this monthly subscription is free for students in the Department during their time at Cornell.
  • Autodesk: students in the Department receive free educational access to Autodesk products (AutoCAD, Revit, Civil 3D) during their time at Cornell.
  • Rhinoceros: available at a significant student discount at the Cornell Store.
  • ArcGIS: Esri provides higher education students free access for one year to its ArcGIS platform. Students may also consider QGIS, a free open-source geographic information system program.

Students looking to purchase an Apple or PC laptop should consider the following computer specifications:

Laptop Specifications

PC Specifications
  • Intel i7 or i9 processor
  • Windows 10x 64
  • 16 to 32 GB of Ram
  • At least a 500 GB hard drive (SSD hard drive)
  • Three-year warranty (recommended)
  • Theft and damage insurance (recommended)
  • Total estimated cost at Cornell Bookstore: $2,199
Mac Specifications
  • Apple MacBook Pro
  • Apple Silicon (M1 Arm CPU)
  • 16 GB of RAM
  • Mac OS 11
  • 512 GB SSD hard drive
  • 13" built-in LCD
  • AppleCare three-year warranty (recommended)
  • Total estimated cost at Cornell Bookstore: $1,399