Elements of Commercial Landscape Architecture

Avoid bad commercial landscape architecture and losing money due to a lack of understanding of landscape design, its goals and benefits. Knowing what commercial landscape architecture is and what it consists of will help you get the right people with the right qualifications to get your commercial property correctly landscaped.
The following information outlines what comprises commercial landscape architecture and its benefits to those who utilize it.

What is a Commercial Landscape?

Commercial landscaping is an extension of horticulture incorporating the planning, design, installation, and maintenance of a landscape into a finished product reflecting a business's personality and values. This investment makes both economic and aesthetic sense to the business and its visitors by improving the overall appeal and charm.
Note: This type of landscaping is highly interactive as it conveys messages or signals of where to go and how to get there. Consider it a way to integrate wayfinding into the landscape.

Commercial Landscape Architecture

Aesthetic landscaping design incorporates five key elements: line, form, texture, color, and scale. A balance of these design features appeals to the senses and brings harmony to a space. These components are fundamental to commercial landscape architecture, which combines form and function to accomplish the following:
Direct Traffic - Businesses want to move people to entrances, and that is done with landscaping by highlighting entrances with grass, plants, and trees, by creating paths and walkways lined with shrubs or trees, or by using brick or stone features. Those elements can make bold visual statements and perform an essential function.
Clearing land, grading the property, and removing trees is often necessary to create and accomplish the intended landscape plan. Learn your local ordinances and tree removal laws in order to be compliant, and not violate your local building code or get fined.
Highlight Existing Structures - You can accentuate your building with its surrounding landscaping. Add flair to the front entrance with color and texture and accentuate the driveway with rows of trees and shrubs.
Landscape Equilibrium - Part of a landscape’s appeal is its equilibrium and how it fits into the design, appearance, and intended messaging of its components. This balance is conveyed in two primary ways:

  • Formal Balance - Formal landscape balance repeats the same heights and depths left and right, conveying a sense of stability, stateliness, and dignity.
  • Informal Balance - Informal balance differs in height, width, and depth from left to right, conveying curiosity, movement, and feels alive.

Attract Clients and Customers - If your commercial landscaping offers leisurely places to sit that look and feel inviting, you will attract more people to your business.
Note: The opposite is also true. If there is little shade or attraction to your landscaping or it is not well maintained, you can repel potential customers and clients.
Increase Engagement with Outdoor Lounging Areas - Landscape design has the potential to encourage people to stay longer and enjoy themselves, or it can encourage them to keep moving along. If you install benches, tables, chairs, fountains, and low walls for seating, people will typically stay a while and enjoy the outdoor space.
Note: Fire pits, gazebos, and lawn games are commonplace in many venues, encouraging people to stay longer with the promise of a comfortable outdoor experience.
Conserve Resources - Your landscaping can contribute to energy savings by shading your building in the summer months and blocking harsh winter storms and winds. Water features in your commercial landscaping like fountains and streams and a green roofing system on your building will help control water run-off while reducing heating and cooling expenses. Sustainable landscape design considers human enjoyment while also promoting the health of the environment.
Commercial Landscape Dominant and Subordinate Elements - The mind naturally seeks dominance and subordination in life. When you look at commercial landscape architecture from any direction, you will see domination and subordination between multiple elements.
If you do not find these elements, you naturally withdraw from that landscape. Some landscapes lack the dominant elements, while others suffer from too many dominant features screaming to be the center of attention. Emphasis can be achieved and conveyed through different sizes, shapes, groupings, and the unexpected.
Simplicity and Variety in Commercial Landscape Architecture - Simplicity and variety work together to balance each other and create a visual flow or transition from one place to another. Simplicity can be explained as a degree of repetition rather than constant change, creating a profound sense of unity. Variety is a combination of diversity and contrast in form, texture, and color intended to prevent monotony.

Principles of Commercial Landscape Architecture

In this article, you discovered essential information about the components, uses, and benefits of commercial landscape architecture.
Knowing what goes into a commercial landscape design will help you direct the flow of foot and vehicle traffic and provide areas for people to relax and admire the visuals of your landscape architecture.
Escape underwhelming landscape architecture and engage landscape design services that improve the overall appearance of your property.

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