Over the past two years with the Global Financial Crisis hit nearly every nation across the globe and as a result landscape architects where laid off in large numbers. This was hardest felt in the USA due to lack of work and collapse of the home building market.
Governments from USA, UK, Canada, Australia, China and many other countries kick-started their economies with Financial Stimulus packages which has given some firms more work but has created just enough work to sustain the staff they had kept on.
At World Landscape Architect, however I have noticed in recent weeks that results for tenders and competitions seems to appear on the web more and more frequently.
Will there be a shortage of landscape architect with economies picking up and more work coming into companies? Well if we go back to late 1990’s to mid 2000’s there were many reports of shortages of experience staff at landscape architecture firms in UK, Australia, New Zealand, UAE, North East Africa and some parts of Asia which was driving up salaries and as a recent article by Mark Smulian at Planning Resource raised the issue that CABE has fears that a shortage will occur again….
Like planning, landscape architecture has never really recovered from the 1990s recession. People left the profession or chose not to enter it, leaving a gap in experience. CABE fears a repeat in this recession and say a minimum of 550 new entrants a year are needed on landscape courses.
[SOURCE: Planning Resource]
Will there be a shortage remains to be seen but the outlook looks good for landscape architects currently unemployed with more work and projects appearing daily and the growth in sustainable design and trend of developments and cities incorporating ratings systems such as LEED ND and Sustainable Sites. Also there is a large amount of work that will be generated with the explosion on new cities in Asia and North Africa and the renewal of many towns and cities throughout the UK and USA. Therefore, if your unemployed there is hope yet and if your employed help push your local Universities and Professional Institutions to keep promoting the profession even more so during the current times of stagnant or slight growth to encourage more students to go into the profession and encourage those thinking of leaving to rethink their long term careers.
By Damian Holmes
SIDENOTE: The article by Mark Smulian at Planning Resource titled ‘Greening our cities‘ is a great article that looks at the role of landscape architects, our strengths and weaknesses.
Cracknell Landscape Architects based in the UAE, UK and Oman have been appointed the landscape architects for SmartCity Malta – ‘a premier ICT and media park, showcasing Malta to the world as the region’s new destination for high-tech industries…..With the Government of Malta as a partner, local, regional and international companies can be assured of the country’s long-term commitment to knowledge-based opportunities.‘.
Cracknell’s scope of work extends from the strategic and master plan level through to the detailed design and construction. Key landscape elements of SmartCity Malta include the entry gate and Main Boulevard, urban ring road, coastal promenade, lagoon, and cascading terraces. The streetscape and lighting scheme will further set the ambiance and enhance the built environment.
Read more at the [SOURCE: Malta Independent Online – SmartCity Malta appoints landscape architects]
The Abu Dhabi Urban Planning Council (UPC) recently released a new street design standards in line with the Capital 2030 plan. The Urban Street Design Manual is based on key design principles including environmental sustainability embodied by the Estidama initiative. The Design Manual incorporates multi-modal forms of transport and varying land uses.
With the introduction of the Urban Street Design Manual, the UPC aims to reduce the emirate’s reliance on personal motorised vehicles by implementing a network of public transit to include highspeed rail and rapid transit options such as trams and buses.
The innovative street designs will provide genuine choice of movement by walking, cycling and public transport modes as well as in private motor vehicles. Abu Dhabi residents and visitors will start witnessing the transformation as early as 2010 when a City Centre street will be reconstructed according to the design standards.
The Urban Street Design Manual will be showcased at Cityscape Abu Dhabi 2010 to be held from April 18 to 21.
Read more at the [SOURCE: AMEINFO.com]
The UAE’s and wider Middle East’s leading exhibition dedicated to the outdoor design and landscaping architecture industries. Gulf Landscaping is the region’s only trade event dedicated to servicing the architectural and landscaping demands of the Middle East and the capital of the UAE, Abu Dhabi. It will bring together the visions of the key drivers influencing the development of the Abu Dhabi landscape for Plan Abu Dhabi 2030.
Where: Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Center
When: 29-31 March 2010
For more information click the image above or go to
SWA group designed the 27 acres around the base of the Burj Khalifa in Dubai. The San Francisco Chronicle has a quick interview with John Wong of SWA about the project and its design.
Read the interview at the [SOURCE: San Francisco Chronicle – Sausalito group creates oasis at Burj Khalifa]
Related Article – Dubai City Guide – 11 Hectare Green Oasis Envelops the foot of Burj Dubai
As part of Burj Dubai’s ‘green’ initiative, the landscaping is irrigated using a unique condensate collection system. Water condensate from the tower’s cooling equipment is recovered, providing an estimated 15 million gallons of water a year, enough to fill 20 Olympic-sized swimming pools.
[SOURCE: Dubai City Guide – 11 Hectare Green Oasis Envelops the foot of Burj Dubai]
Construction Week (Middle East) have just published the results of a salary survey held from April to September this year. The main findings of the survey is that most people are experienced and the UAE is not a place for first-jobbers. People consistently worked longer than 40 hour per week and have salaries in construction(including Architects) on average between $4500-$6047 (USD) month across the six GCC countries. The results also outline expectations for pay rises, housing, current pressures and other interesting information.
For more information go to the two articles at the [SOURCE: Construction Week (Middle East)]
1. Survey Analysis – Construction Week (Middle East)
2. Detailed Results – Construction Week (Middle East)