Manufacturers and suppliers of landscape architecture products are playing an increasingly large role in the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA), helping to plan the EXPO trade show, share research information, and shape the centennial celebration. Supplier donations to the Landscape Architecture Foundation are now in the hundreds of thousands of dollars, with eighteen suppliers and service providers having contributed amounts ranging from $1,000 to more than $250,000.
This increased participation is reflected in the increased appreciation landscape architects are showing for the vital role manufacturers and suppliers of architectural products play.
"It’s through their [manufacturers’ and suppliers’] efforts that designs are transformed into the places where we live, work, and play," said Pete Kirsch, executive vice president of ASLA.
As the technology curve rises, suppliers are listening to landscape architects’ needs and stepping in to help them become more effective and efficient designers, offering assistance such as on-line help, CD-ROMS, and electronic specifications. ESRI’s recent donation of $1 million of geographic information software to ASLA is a shining example of this electronic good will.
The communication between suppliers and the Society is a two-way street. For example, ASLA has fine-tuned the EXPO so that suppliers get maximum exposure during the annual meeting.
At past annual meetings, attendance at the EXPO was below average because other events were scheduled concurrently, pulling landscape architects away from the exhibit floor. In response, ASLA consolidated the EXPO from a three-day to a two-day event, and scheduled educational sessions so that they don’t conflict with the trade show.
"Our participation as major sponsors in the Portland annual meeting and as an advertiser in Landscape Architecture magazine catapulted us to a higher level of exposure than ever before," says Nancy Buley, marketing and communications director, J. Frank Schmidt and Son.
ASLA is also planning to reintroduce the corporate membership package for suppliers and firms. Some of the expanded benefits under consideration for corporate memberships are opportunities to sponsor educational seminars and events at the annual meeting, to collaborate on articles about new products and technology in Landscape Architecture magazine and Landscape Architecture News Digest, to be listed in the ASLA Member Handbook, and to be recognized at the annual meeting.
For information on exhibiting opportunities at the 1999 ASLA Annual Meeting and EXPO on September 12–16 in Boston, contact Angela Wilson, Business Development Manager, at (202) 216-2336 or
. For information on corporate membership, contact Leslie Murray, Membership Services Associate Director, at (202) 216-2325 or
ASLA, celebrating its centennial anniversary in 1999, represents more than 13,000 members nationwide. Landscape architecture is a comprehensive discipline of land analysis, planning, design, management, preservation, and rehabilitation. Typical projects include site design and planning, town and urban planning, regional planning, preparation of environmental-impact plans, garden design, historic preservation, and parks/recreation design and planning. Landscape architects hold undergraduate or graduate degrees and are licensed in 46 of the 50 states.