Ecological Restoration Planning/Design Guidance and a Discussion of Related Global & National Issues

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ASLA online learning opportunities are open to all. ASLA members may purchase this presentation at a reduced rate.
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This online Landscape Architecture Continuing Education Session discusses ecological restoration planning/design principles and guidelines drawn from the "Successful Ecological Restoration" Landscape Architecture Technical Information Series report (ASLA 2008) and recent publications.

Lee R. Skabelund, ASLA and Associate Professor at Kansas State University, summarizes findings from interviews with landscape architects and restoration ecologists regarding the hallmarks of “successful” ecological restoration efforts. The importance of developing meaningful ecological restoration goals, objectives, and performance criteria are discussed. Particular emphasis is given to the role of in integrated ecosystem restoration and ecological design efforts in creating sustainable landscape systems. To be successful, interdisciplinary ecological restoration project teams need to understand essential physical and ecological processes, the drivers of environmental change in the region, and the site-specific dynamics in the location where restoration is being proposed.
Ecological restoration efforts likewise need to account for economic and socio-political factors. Indicators of “successful ecological restoration” include two primary outcomes: 1) the project’s effectiveness in meeting stated project goals, objectives, and performance criteria, and 2) the ability to create a system that functions in accord with desired ecosystem attributes and conditions.

Important ecological restoration issues relevant to designers throughout the world are addressed by Keith Bowers, who has led work on ecological restoration and conservation planning/design projects across the U.S. and has helped guide the Society for Ecological Restoration for many years.
Bowers, ASLA, RLA; President of Biohabitats, Inc.; and past-Chair of the Society for Ecological Restoration’s Board of Directors (SER) discusses pressing ecological restoration needs and opportunities around the world, sharing what he has learned during his work with SER and other international organizations, and as head of a firm focused on ecological restoration and regenerative design. Traditional knowledge and active community involvement in ecological restoration is seen as a vital component of successful ecological restoration project efforts. Integrating conservation planning, ecological restoration, and regenerative site design strategies into all facets of projects can be a primary component of ‘green’ development programs and landscape architecture projects.

Participants are invited to consider important issues related to ecological restoration planning, design and implementation, research, design and technical needs related to the practice of ecological restoration, and opportunities for integrating landscape architectural design that focuses on the restoration of functional human and ecological systems in projects large and small.
Distance Learning
Course Equivalency
Business Practices / Contracts / HR
Horticulture / Plants
Sustainable Development & Design
Health, Safety and Welfare
Learning Outcomes
•Helps participants appreciate the complexity of restoring ecosystems in urban settings, and enables designers to develop meaningful ecological restoration goals, objectives, and performance criteria.

•Provides guidance for working with local stakeholders on urban ecological restoration design projects and in facilitating planning/design efforts to create more sustainable urban systems.

•Provides examples of designs that seek to integrate economic, aesthetic, socio-cultural, and ecological perspectives (including water quality and ecosystem conservation) into local and regional systems.
Lee R. Skabelund (Kansas State University) and Keith Bowers (Biohabitats, Inc.)
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American Society of Landscape Architects

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