Think globally, act locally: The making of a model Sustainable SITES Landscape Ordinance

Published on
26 May 2021
Paul Wessel
Article Headers 2021 (42)

Land use in the U.S. is largely governed at the local level. Since infrastructure is on everyone's lips right now, it's a great opportunity to talk locally about green infrastructure, and the interdisciplinary, integrated approaches to sustainable and resilient site development.  

A great way to begin local discussion is by proposing landscape guidelines to be adopted by local town councils.

ASLA Sustainable Design and Development PPN Co-Chair, Joshua Sloan (who is also the Vice President and Director of Planning and Landscape Architecture at VIKA Maryland) has begun drafting a model Sustainable SITES Landscape Ordinance to get the ball rolling. And he’s looking for your assistance.

The goals are to:

  • Provide a framework for holistic landscape design guidelines to integrate into or augment existing landscape guidelines and ordinances
  • Encourage sustainable and resilient landscape design
  • Establish performance-based landscape design standards
  • Foster an awareness of the Sustainable SITES Initiative and the elements that go into sustainable, resilient landscape design
  • Allow SITES certification to substitute local landscape guidelines as a professionally-vetted, nationally adopted framework for sustainable site design

Take a look at the outline of the Model Sustainable SITES Landscape Ordinance and let Josh know your thoughts on the language and how you might use this in your community.