MINNEAPOLIS, Oct. 7, 2006---The American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) released preliminary results of its 2006 ASLA National Salary Survey and Business Indicators Survey at a press conference in Minneapolis today. The event helped kick off the ASLA 2006 Annual Meeting and EXPO.
According to the survey, average total compensation for landscape architects, which includes base salary and bonuses but not benefits, is $89,700. This is an increase of 20.2 percent over the reported $74,600 in the 2004 survey.
Total compensation rose steadily by years of experience in the 2006 survey. It peaked for those with 36 to 40 years of experience and an average total compensation of $167,000 that was far above any other group. The Pacific region was again the top-earning region by total compensation, with an average total compensation of $99,700 in 2006. The Pacific region was also the top-earning region in both 2004 and in 1998.
The percentage of female respondents took a big jump in the 2006 survey. In the 1998 survey their share was 25 percent. There was a very slight increase, to 26 percent, in 2004, and a larger jump up to 30 percent in the 2006 survey. Further demographics of the survey include: 91 percent white; 3 percent African-American; 3 percent Asian-American; 1.4 percent Hispanic; and 1.9 percent “other.” ASLA has launched a partnership with the ACE Mentor Program, which introduces high school students to careers in design and construction, to increase the number and diversity of students entering the landscape architecture profession.
The 2006 ASLA Business Indicators Survey reveals that there are not enough landscape architects to meet the demand for services, which is expected to continue to grow in the next decade. While 62 percent of respondents indicated there was a good supply of landscape architecture graduates, 38 percent thought there were too few landscape architecture graduates. No respondent thought that there was a surplus of new graduates in the field. Almost half of the respondents (47 percent) expect to hire landscape architects in the coming 12 months.
Respondents reported a 10 percent increase in billable hours between 2005 and 2006.
Residential work continues to dominate the landscape architecture market as it did in all previous surveys. Most of that work (38 percent) consisted of single-family homes, with apartments and condos comprising 9 percent of residential work and retirement communities at 3 percent.
“Both surveys confirm what we’ve been hearing from our members: that it’s a very good time to be a landscape architect,” said Nancy C. Somerville, executive vice president/CEO of ASLA. “With only 30,000 landscape architects in the U.S. and the sustained growth in demand for landscape architecture services, there is significant opportunity for young people considering entering the profession. The traditional market sectors—residential, parks and recreation, planning, commercial—have all remained extremely strong while less conventional fields such as stormwater management, green roofs, and security design have grown significantly.”
The ASLA 2006 Annual Meeting and EXPO extends through Monday, October 9, and features a number of renowned speakers and the industry’s largest exhibit hall.
The 2006 ASLA National Salary and Business Indicators Surveys is available for purchase from the ASLA web site. The data is presented online, allowing subscribers to create their own interactive charts and tables.