ASLA to Create Rating System for Sustainable Landscape Design

ASLA to Create Rating System for Sustainable Landscape Design

The American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) will develop a rating system for sustainable landscape design that is similar to LEED.

ASLA will announce its Sustainable Sites Initiative Saturday at its annual meeting, which has as its theme, "Design with Nature: The Art of Balance."

The trade organization is collaborating with the University of Texas at Austin's Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center and the U.S. Botanic Garden for the initiative to measure the sustainability of designed landscapes of all types, such as public, private and commercial projects.

The U.S. Green Building Council will eventually adopt the finished metrics into its LEED system. Sustainable landscape, ASLA said, can save billions and reduce maintenance but no rating system is available beyond building construction.

ASLA recently reported the results of its green roof demonstration project. The study detailed the results of a green roof installation atop its Washington, D.C. headquarters, finding that the green roof avoided about 75 percent of its associated stormwater runoff from entering the city's sewage system, and lowered energy usage by 10 percent during the winter.