My job at a state Department of Transportation was to review landscape plans, provide technical advice for anything related to landscapes, write contract specifications for planting and grassing, write maintenance specifications and work plans, and create statewide policies for roadside projects and permits. The department had about 4500-personnel statewide, including many civil engineers and ecologists as well as external consultant designers.
I also helped create a statewide landscape grant program and vegetation management permit policy which provided ongoing funding for the program.
My background is in landscape architecture with a strong emphasis on horticulture. I did a lot of industrial campus plans and municipal work before coming to the Department, and I worked, early in my career, on large-scale planting and irrigation plans. I did some residential work, too. I got to know the green industry and gained practical experience in how to keep plants alive and maintain them. You get to know plant species after specifying several hundred of them on a single site!
During my time at the DOT I reviewed thousands of landscape design proposals and grant applications for the rights-of-way. It was very interesting to see the plan graphics of so many designers. With time, I could quickly determine if the landscape plan was created by an architect, a civil engineer, a landscape architect, or an ecologist. There were distinctive strong and weak points for each professional discipline.
What do I want to tell you about roadside design?
• As long as you meet the safety and permit requirements for a public landscape proposal, your project will breeze through the plan development process for approval.
• It is easy to put together a standout landscape grant proposal.
• There are simple ways to create a roadside landscape design that works.
The devil is in the details, though!
I want to share as much as I can with you about what I’ve learned over the years, but you can find detailed information in my Advanced Guide to Roadside Design eBook. I would love to hear your comments and about your roadside enhancement stories and experiences, too.
You might also enjoy the Advanced Guide to Landscape Grants eBook, full of practical tips for applying for funding and making your beautification project a success.