The Fundamentals of Good Commercial Landscape Design
What Is Commercial Landscape Design?
On the most basic level, we all have an appreciation of what is or isn’t good landscape design for commercial buildings. We look at the green space surrounding a commercial building and have the gut reaction that “That looks nice,” “That looks impressive,” “Meh,” or even “That looks bad.” To some degree, our opinions may vary based on individual taste, but there will be some fairly broad consensus nonetheless.
But unless we have training in the field of landscape architecture, we may not understand the reasons we react as we do. To understand, we need to grasp what the landscape designer is trying to achieve when he or she creates a landscape design for commercial buildings.
What are the Goals of Commercial Landscape Design?
When planning commercial landscape architecture, the landscape designer is seeking a fusion of form and function. The landscape should look good and enhance the appearance of your building, but there’s more to it than that. The commercial landscape installation should facilitate the way you want people to interact with your property and encourage them to think about your business in the way you want them to.
To provide a commercial landscape installation that meets your needs, the landscape designer will consider how the landscape will look at maturity with particular attention to the placement of shrubs and trees. He or she will make sure the level of maintenance required to keep the landscape looking good is one you’re comfortable with, either because you can handle it yourself or anticipate hiring someone else to do it for you. The expert can also provide guidance on how to care for the particular plants that form part of the commercial landscape installation.
To achieve these goals, the landscape designer will pay particular attention to the following concerns.
Issues in Commercial Landscape Design
- What message is the landscape sending? The landscape helps tell the story you want to tell about your business. You may believe that the nature of your business is so simple and straightforward that you don’t need to tell a story, but think a little further. Customers can think of your operation as healing, soothing, sustainable, edgy, professional, or fun. What do you wantthem to think? Whatever it is, there are landscape architecture design elements that will help to convey the feeling. For example, dancing fountains are fun, Zen elements are soothing, green roofs, native grasses, and wildflowers say, “Sustainability,” and minimalist geometric plant designs look edgy.
- Does the commercial landscape encourage people to engage with the business?Chairs, tables, benches, and low walls that people can sit on encourage people to linger and enjoy that outdoor space. Lawn games and fire pits do too, and modern commercial landscape design for the hospitality industry often incorporates these.
- Does the commercial landscape installation effectively direct the flow of traffic? Ultimately, of course, you want people to find their way into the building without difficulty. You can get them pointed in the right direction with brick or stone wall features, plants and trees that highlight entrances, and paths and walkways lined with trees or shrubs.
- Does the commercial landscape bring out the best in the architecture of the building? You want a commercial landscape installation that enhances the look of your building. The right design brings texture and color to entrances, and driveways look well lined with shrubs. You can also use plants indoors to make atriums and courtyards more attractive.
- Does the commercial landscape attract business? This is really the question that encapsulates the four previous ones. If the commercial landscape design is sending the right message, encouraging people to engage, directing traffic properly, and helping the building itself to look its best, all of that should work to bring in customers or clients. Of course, the opposite is true as well. A drab or poorly maintained commercial landscape will emphatically nothelp you attract business.
- Does the commercial landscape design help with energy and water conservation? It will if trees shade the building in summer and block cold winter winds. Green roofs also keep down cooling and heating costs while helping to control water runoff.
If you need help with commercial landscape design, we invite you to contract the pros at Country Landscape. We’ll be happy to help you in any way we can.