Based in San Francisco, this partnership was formed from a temporary merger of William Johnson’s firm Johnson, Johnson and Roy (founded in 1961) and Peter Walker’s firm PWP Landscape Architecture (founded in 1983). The two had initially met while studying at Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design in the 1950s. The merger represented a blending of two varying approaches to the practice of landscape architecture. While Walker focused on the creation of landscapes as objects, Johnson preferred to give equal attention to context and took a holistic approach to planning and design.
The year the two practices merged, they won a design competition for the Sony Complex in Berlin, Germany, which was completed in 2000. That same year a residential development in Grayslake, Illinois, known as Prairie Crossing, which Johnson had been developing a master plan for, was transferred to the firm. Other master plans the firm was involved with include the new Harima Science Garden City in Nishi Harima, Japan (1993), and Barnsdall Park in Los Angeles (1995). Examples of the firm’s design work includes the Library Walk at the University of California, San Diego (1995), the landscape for the Toyota Municipal Museum of Art in Toyota City, Japan (1995), and Saitama-Shintoshin Station “Sky Forest” Plaza in Japan (2000). In 1997 the partnership was dissolved after five years, as originally planned.