Who We Are

With more than forty years as an architect first in Los Angeles and then as an architect and landscape architect in Singapore, Franklin imparts to the Tierra team, holistic thinking, where there is no divide between architecture and landscape architecture as part of the design process. As an award-winning practice with a presence in Singapore these twenty-five years, Tierra’s projects across twelve countries draw from a transdisciplinary pool of talent that includes landscape architects, architects, planners, horticulturists and arborists while also working closely with ecologists, botanists, agronomists and environmental scientists. Over the years, Tierra’s projects have retained a total design approach where principles of landscape urbanism and ecologically sustainable practice integrate into the design in order to create quality spaces for the urban environment.

Guided by a lifetime of learning, reflection and practical experience, Franklin Po brings to the team at Tierra a way of thinking and a philosophy for responsible environmental design. He draws from his first degree in biology a connection with nature’s structural systems where parallels like order, form and pattern- making relate to architecture and landscape architecture. During his undergraduate pre-med years of study at UC Irvine in California, Franklin discovered artists like Vija Celmins, Craig Kaufman, Robert Irwin, Ed Moses and Larry Bell. Their art, with a strong connection to technology, ignited his lifelong love for this form of expression. After completing his Bachelors in Biology degree, Franklin studied architecture and planning at California State Polytechnic University where he met architects like Richard Neutra, Buckminster Fuller and Raymond Kappe (Founder of SCIArc). A Welton Beckett Architects Fellowship enabled him to attend UCLA Graduate School of Architecture and Planning where he graduated with a Masters in Architecture.

To define Tierra’s holistic approach to design, the acronym “RiGBY” as the first letters of the colours Red, Green, Blue and Yellow was adopted as their mantra. Red represents transportation systems for vehicular movement. Green, is the colour for the amalgamation of spaces allowing landscape features to complement and enhance the built environment and, to create biodiversity. Water, represented by the colour Blue applies the principles of water sensitive urban design (WSUD) that is the internationally recognised integrative system for urban run-off water management in the built and natural environment. The colour Yellow denotes social spaces for community use and recreational enjoyment. Together, with the inclusion of the letter “i” that embraces the principles of Integrative, Inclusive and Immersive design, RiGBY reflects how Tierra approaches the design and planning of projects for the value added purpose of enhancing the quality of environments for people of all ages and abilities.

An Integrative Design Process

RIIGBY signifies the way we think and practice. It is a holistic design approach for the creation of socially shared spaces that are flexible yet resilient, practical and elegant. We harness the principles of landscape urbanism to connect ecologically sustainable practices with our integrated design solutions for the creation of quality spaces.

Red represents transportation and movement systems for car-lite design solutions.

Integrative and Inclusive design are represented by the colour black.

Green networks considers the careful amalgamation of spaces that allow landscape features to holistically blend with the architecture the built environment connects biodiversity in nature with people.

Blue networks explores water sensitive urban design as an integrative system with the built and natural environment.

Yellow represents social spaces inclusivity that is integrated into designed spaces for the well-being of people of all ages and abilities.