Advocacy

Licensure

Protects Health, Safety & Welfare  
Licensed in All 50 States & D.C.

All 50 states and the District of Columbia require landscape architects to be licensed to protect the health, safety, and welfare of the public. Landscape architects apply their skills and knowledge to plan, design, document, and supervise the development of projects that protect and conserve resources and safeguard communities from hazards.

Licensure of landscape architects includes a rigorous STEM focused Bachelor’s or Master’s education, encompassing study in the natural and physical sciences, engineering and environmental studies, design principles, urban planning, and more. Then, after acquiring real-world experience and passing a comprehensive national licensing exam can they be recognized as a Professional Landscape Architect.

Freedom to Invest in Tomorrow's Workforce Act

Licensure candidates incur substantial costs for the educational and professional development requirements to obtain and maintain their license. ASLA is committed to identifying tools, resources, and policies to help offset or defray some of these costs. Specifically, ASLA supports H.R. 1477, the Freedom to Invest in Tomorrow's Workforce Act. Learn more about how this bill can reduce the financial costs of pursuing and renewing licensure

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Landscape Architecture Case Law Examples

Physical Injury    

In Cooper v. City of New Orleans, an architect negligently failed to specify both resilient surfaces below play equipment and age-group-appropriate equipment. The design flaws were revealed when a six-year-old girl fell from a play structure was rendered paraplegic by her injuries.

Property Damage    

In Foxchase, LLLP v. Cliatt, a golf course designer falsely held  herself out to be a licensed landscape architect. During the design and construction phases of her work, excess water, sediment, sand, and debris flowed unabated down a creek on the golf course property to an adjacent property, where the runoff caused significant damage.

Financial Harm    

In Heavenly Days Crematorium, LLC v. Harris, Smariga & Associates, Inc., a civil engineering firm was held liable for producing a site plan that contained errors, delayed the obtaining of a permit, caused fines and penalties to be incurred by the owner, caused construction delays, and caused increased construction costs. Significantly, the individual responsible for preparing the defective site plan and other designs had received a master’s degree in landscape architecture, but was not a licensed landscape architect.

Find more examples of case law

Resources

Landscape Architecture Case Law: Ensuring Safe, Healthy, and Resilient Natural and Built Environments (January, 2017)

ASLA Virginia: Justification for Continued Licensure of Landscape Architects in Virginia (September 29, 2020)

Virginia Board for Professional and Occupational Regulation: Final Report to the General Assembly (December 17, 2020); "Evaluation of the Need for Continued Regulation of Certain Professions and Occupations as Recommended by the Joint Legislative Audit and Review Commission"

ASLA Public Policies

Professional Licensure
Definition of Landscape Architectural Practice
Prerequisites for Licensure
Reciprocity
Enforcement
Universal Designation  

Partners

CLARB
CELA  

Contact

Roxanne Blackwell, 
Esq., Hon. ASLA,
Director of Federal
Government Affairs
governmentaffairs@asla.org

Elizabeth Hebron,
Director of State
Government Affairs
governmentaffairs@asla.org

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