In honor of National Landscape Architecture Month in April, landscape architects across the country will host a variety of activities to celebrate the profession and show how it promotes public health. This year’s theme is “Healthy Living Through Design.”
According to Nancy Somerville, Hon. ASLA, executive vice president and CEO of the American Society of Landscape Architects, landscape architects have long been creating environments that encourage daily exercise, provide clean air and water, and even supply nutritious food. This helps combat growing epidemics of depression, obesity, diabetes, asthma, and heart disease.
“Landscape architecture, more than any other design profession, epitomizes green design, and public health has always been an integral concern for landscape architects,” says Somerville. “National Landscape Architecture Month provides a great opportunity to highlight what landscape architects do to help everyone get outside and get healthy.”
To mark the month, the entire April issue of Landscape Architecture Magazine will be made available online for free. Watch for the link in the next issue of LAND.
National Landscape Architecture Month also encompasses Earth Day on April 22 along with the April 26 birthday of Frederick Law Olmsted (1822–1903), the father of American landscape architecture and the designer of New York City’s Central Park and other iconic landscapes.
Since Olmsted’s time the field of landscape architecture has taken a lead in solving environmental problems and promoting civic planning for healthy living. Recent innovations include green roofs, sustainability certification, green infrastructure, and active transportation measures including complete streets.
Some of the events throughout National Landscape Architecture Month include:
- Showing a documentary film about women landscape architects, "Women in the Dirt," to audiences throughout the state of New York
- Sharing information about landscape architecture with the Vermont state legislature
- Working in partnership with the National Park Service to unveil a new design for the Shasta Rail Trail in Northern California
- Organizing joint advocacy events in Kansas and Missouri
- Connecting with hundreds of students at a local design high school in Kentucky to discover future landscape architects.
What will you do? Learn more at the National Landscape Architecture Month website and make a commitment to join the effort.