Create a Sustainability Framework for Your University Landscape

Campus landscapes are advancing higher education’s sustainability mission.  As universities adopt and improve on energy efficiency, green infrastructure and water conservation initiatives, landscape performance is becoming essential to generate best-in-class environmental metrics.

ELM is working with colleges and universities across Connecticut and New York metro to address both landscape construction and maintenance objectives, as well as innovative water and resource conservation, watershed and stormwater management, responsible approaches to pest and disease management, meeting zero waste to landfill, and reducing carbon footprints in the following ways:

  • Modifying our production processes to meet resource reduction targets.
  • Using less toxic or non-toxic substances.
  • Implementing conservation techniques through water management and smart water technology.
  • Improving water governance.
  • Providing solutions in stormwater management, flood control and drainage systems, bioswales and rain gardens to enhance water quality, filter runoff, and recharge local aquifers.
  • Reducing heat island effect by replacing surface space, and implementing and maintaining green roofs and vertical gardens and outdoor spaces to address heat absorption and filter water.
  • Using strategic planting and plant health care and maintenance strategies to improve air quality, and provide attractive, cohesive park-like settings that serve as both healthy respite and multi-purpose outdoor learning space.
  • Protecting wildlife corridors and habitats, watersheds, and riparian zones by reducing pollutants.
  • Reusing and recycling materials rather than putting them into the waste/landfill stream.
  • Using renewable energy, flexible fuel or low emissions vehicles, and autonomous equipment.
  • Upgrading equipment and approaches to better deliver on goals for safety, efficiency, service and innovation.
  • Training our team for sustainability engagement and greener mindsets.
  • Using lean approaches to minimize waste without sacrificing productivity.
  • Embracing responsible consumption by minimizing fuel consumption, mapping routes, production and logistics for optimum efficiency.
  • Supporting LEED and green building goals to reduce environmental impacts and overall exposure to water, waste, and weather events.
  • Including SMART goals in our planning to take landscape planning and higher education green objectives to the next level.
  • Investing in continuous green improvements.
  • Receiving the ChangeMakers Award from Fairfield County for sustainable water conservation program.

About Us

ELM is recognized as a leader in campus landscape sustainability planning and implementation and offers five ways in which our specialists can customize a working relationship with campus facility managers to improve sustainability:

  1. Full service outsource partner – landscape construction and renovation; green infrastructure; site improvements; landscape maintenance; plant health care; water management; and snow and ice/winter management.
  2. Specialty landscape contractor for grounds maintenance and management, snow and ice, irrigation and water management, performance turf and athletic fields.
  3. Specialty landscape contractor for broad site improvements and green infrastructure, stormwater and drainage systems, and site amenities.
  4. Full-service landscape maintenance.
  5. Team partner with general contractors, design-build teams, or onsite horticultural and/or grounds professionals.

Whether refreshing iconic campus footprints, innovating for a next generation of students and  faculty, or to lead capital improvement for conservation and development, ELM is shaping campus green spaces to connect people to nature, to each other and to the future they serve.

Improving Quality of Life by Planting for Health

Gardens and plants are growing in popularity in hospitals and other health care settings for one simple reason: they improve the quality of life and the quality of healing.

While every health care property is unique, there is one overarching goal each property’s landscape supports: “First, do no harm.” To this extent, there is a growing awareness that landscapes and plants can increase care quality, significantly improve patient health and satisfaction, measurably reduce infection risk and exposure, lower stress, and serve a greater purpose.

Our top six recommendations:

• Make nature, by way of strategic landscape planning, essential to your brand and credibility, and commitment to sustainability.

• Create multi-function therapeutic landscape space. Horticultural therapy sessions, interactive gardens, garden terraces and healing courtyard gardens, and green walls, with an emphasis on sensory perception.

• Integrate green building features with thoughtful elements that are patient-centered and accommodate limited mobility: handrails, grade-sensitive walkways that promote exercise, accessible ramps, and seating areas that promote rest.

• Create indoor atriums and enclosed all-weather landscape pavilions that provide high value impact and make nature available year-round.

• Choose seasonal plant and ornamental tree palettes that highlight rotating foliage color and texture, with plants that are non-toxic and non-thorny, with an emphasis on high contrast plantings to help patients with low vision; plant shade trees and lush perennial shrub and herb borders to create a sense of serenity.

• Mitigate environmental risk with less-toxic plant health care applications, advance human health and safety, with landscape lighting, green technologies, remote-controlled irrigation to avoid water waste and puddling; mitigate winter risk with storm and snow/ice management and safety plan.

ELM is a leader in health care, and institutional and commercial landscaping services. To learn more about healing gardens, plant therapy, and the role landscaping can play as an integrated strategy for health and well-being, contact Bruce Moore Jr., president, at 203-316-5433.

Nature is Transforming Outdoor Work and Conference Space

If Covid-19 accelerated an interest in healthier buildings, then landscaping, and its ability to leverage the health benefits of nature, will be front and center in any master plan that defines how we bring people back to work.

Landscaping opportunities that lead to stronger returns are those that respond to sustainability concerns, including automation, green technology, operational and energy efficiency, climate resiliency, resource conservation, and safety.

At ELM, we’re not only on top of these trends, we’re driving them. Here are our top 7:

• Bring nature to work. Incorporate outdoor conference space, green terraces, green roofs and walls, indoor atriums, water features, container plantings, natural light, texture and foliage, for improved air quality and ventilation.

• Create wow factors. Add seasonal color, flowering perennials, foliage texture for curb appeal, and native and adaptive plants to save water and maintenance.

• Dress it up. Prepare beds with fresh mulch, prune trees and shrubs, cull diseased and infested plants, power wash outdoor surfaces, eliminate weeds and unwanted plants.

• Invest in smart technologies. Upgrade irrigation infrastructure to offset water as the fastest growing utility expense. Invest in smart water technology to support and encourage conservation, and improved groundwater and stormwater filtration and management systems to support water quality.

• Renovate hardscape, pathways, paved surfaces, terraces, decks, and outdoor built elements to repair winter wear and tear, improve safety and manage risk.

• Add tenant amenities such as outdoor Wi-Fi, green roofs, LED lighting, outdoor television, dining areas, bocce ball, putting greens or jogging and bike paths.

• Replace underperforming turf with drought tolerant native plants and meadow-style perennials to improve aesthetics; invest in tree cover, rain gardens and bioswales, and permeable surfaces to improve environmental health and water and air quality.

Commercial properties with well-engineered landscapes and green site systems reap savings, financial incentives (tax credits, rebates and stormwater/irrigation credits where applicable), reduced life-cycle and maintenance costs, reduced flood damage, and reduced water bills, while also creating measurable value for property owners and tenants both.

If you’re looking to innovate, meet sustainability and LEED credits, or transform your building’s underperforming outdoor areas into functional conference space, contact Bruce Moore, Jr., president, at ‭(203) 316-5433‬.

When There’s No Margin for Error, a Quality Audit Can Be Your Best Return on Investment.

ELM’s landscape quality audit program is the gold standard in plant performance management. Because you can’t manage what you can’t measure – in business or in landscaping – we believe that a real-time assessment of plant issues and discrepancies is the best way to measure quality and improve the way your landscape looks, and the way its systems function.

When assessing quality, we consider intangible benefits like green systems efficiency, sustainability metrics, and ways to make the care of your plants, trees and soil structure more environmentally-responsible.

The first step in our program is to estimate total cost and benefits, count everything that is directly associated with your landscape, including hardscape and infrastructure elements, and factor in qualitative benefits such as: does this landscape add asset value, how can we make this site more productive and efficient, and where are missed opportunities for continuous improvement?

When key business objectives are driven by quality, we know that there is no margin for error.

If you’d like to learn more about our landscape quality audit and how we can improve your landscape’s ROI, contact President, Bruce Moore Jr. at 203-316-5433.

ELM is Driving the “E” in ESG. Here’s Why That Matters.

Environmental. Social. Governance. In the community of businesses across our portfolio – giants in commercial real estate, banking, the consumer services sector or institutions of higher learning, growth is increasingly contingent on how well captains of industry capitalize on ways to improve the world we all live, work and play in. And that includes us.

In a nutshell, ESG is a set of standards, reporting and benchmarking around issues seen by shareholders as drivers of the future.  And where ELM is placing its future is in the hands of how our business can drive your business through sustainable and environmentally-responsible practices.  That’s the “E” in ESG.

Here’s how E works to drive value.

A wide spectrum of ELM’s landscaping business practices, such as how good we are with water management, how well we protect against accidents and manage risk (especially in winter), how well we treat our workers, and how our corporate culture builds and fosters trust and innovation is key.

Whether we are helping you meet LEED or WELL criteria, enhance your environmental stewardship, be more energy efficient or streamline your carbon footprint, our end game is exactly like yours: to advance smarter, safer and better ways to be better at who we are and what we do.

Embracing a culture of sustainability delivers opportunities for everyone. We look forward to furthering our commitment to be a greener practice, take action on alternate fuels, and simply be better stewards to ensure that our growth – your growth – and our shared future is strategic, impactful and aligned with purpose.

For more information on ELM’s green goals, contact President Bruce Moore Jr. at 203-315-5433.

 

 

Communicating Smarter, Faster & Better

Communication means everything. Especially when it comes to client service.

But is there such a thing as too much information? 

There are many ways information overload can make things worse. Mostly when we try to do too many things at once, roll out too many ideas or action plans, or there’s just too many layers between the critical and the fluff.

Because last year’s Covid-crisis had us feeling like we were building the plane as we were trying to fly it, this year, we’re taking a targeted approach to make sure you get what you need, what you want and what you expect without a lot of time wasted on the ancillary.

Whether you need real-time emergency information, help on technical issues or assurance that something’s either done or on its way to completion, we know that for you to have confidence in us and feel better about working with our team, we need to empower and deliver the smartest way to do that. And it starts by our commitment to be better listeners. 

Moving forward, we are as eager as you are to personalize our interactions with you and demonstrate our team’s commitment to being reliable, relatable and ready to hit the ground running. And understand the ins and out of your businesses as well as you do. 

Our area managers will continue to be your go-to for solutions and opportunities to get stuff done faster and better than ever before. And when you need extra muscle, we have some really smart folks skilled at untangling the toughest knots.

At ELM, we believe that client service is embedded in our action as well as our voice, but only through seamless communications can we build a professional connection between you and our service teams, save you time and frustration, and ultimately win your loyalty.

Let’s talk. Contact President Bruce Moore Jr., at 203-316-5433.

 

Super Cool Technologies Reduce Winter Risk

While this winter’s snow forecast is expected to vary across our greater NYC Metro and Connecticut service area, seasonal hazard risk remains high.

From frost and freeze to high winds, our team knows that regardless of conditions, commercial property owners and managers can expect proactive, first-class service, and the expertise to proactively manage every type of winter weather event.

This year, ELM conducted our second annual snow rodeo, a high-impact winter leadership event that brings our company snow pros together with experts, ideas and resources to improve results and efficiency of our program, learn the latest in innovative brine technologies, and fine-tune our ability to maintain readiness at all levels.

From understanding the hazards of winter driving to winterizing vehicles and high-performance equipment to cold stress prevention on landscapes, our primary concern is making sure safety is never compromised.

ELM’s snow and ice program has been continually upgraded since our company’s founding in 1976, and our crews have more than 100 years combined professional experience dealing with northeastern weather, no matter how severe.

Why Choose ELM for Winter Services?

  • Unrivaled commitment to safety and proactive planning
  • Cost savings, thanks to consolidated, integrated services platform
  • Customized snow and ice removal programs
  • 24/7 Weather tracking and snow and ice monitoring system
  • Eco-friendly snow removal and de-icing solutions
  • Our own brining facility, passing on cost savings to clients
  • Compliance and certification in technical fields
  • Reduced risk exposure and liability
  • Follow-up reports
  • Full-service team of experts trained in equipment and safety
  • No disruption to client site operations
  • Readiness response and 24/7 communications hotline
  • Advance Snow Managers and SIMA trained technicians
  • Membership in SIMA and ASCA

To learn more about ELMs approach to winter safety, contact Bruce Moore Jr. at 203-316-5433.

ELM Celebrates the Light at The End of The Tunnel

There’s an art to approaching the holidays and one of our favorite ways to bring a sense of pause, especially after a challenging year, is to create a little magic with lights.  Lots of them.

“Across Connecticut and Greater NYC Metro, lighting installations are a fun and easy way to boost morale,” said Bruce Moore, Jr., ELM president, who reports an increase in lighting demand as technology has made lighting a safe, and more energy- and cost-efficient way to spark joy.

With limits on public gatherings and traditional festivities dialed back, brightly lit streets and plazas are one tradition that allows people to celebrate safely and from a distance.

To learn more about ELM’s energy-efficient holiday lighting program, and ways commercial-grade lighting can boost goodwill for your business and community, contact Bruce Moore Jr. at 203-316-5433.

Rich Veenhuis Joins ELM as Area Manager

Eastern Land Management is pleased to announce Rich Veenhuis has joined its team as Area Manager. Rich will be based out of ELM’s facility in Monroe, CT.  

Rich brings a solid combination of business and snow industry experience to his new role, ranging from project management to operations.

“I am delighted to be part of the ELM team. I got the ‘landscape bug’ at a very young age and have enjoyed working in this industry my whole life. I look forward to sharing my enthusiasm for smart technologies and high performing landscape systems, and working with our regional team, customers, partners and community to deliver great and safe service, and perfect the experience people have with us,” said Rich.

“Rich is an exceptionally motivated professional, whose genuine passion will bring out the best in his team,” said ELM President, Bruce Moore, Jr. “He has a great blend of technical and people skills and will play an important role is driving consistent, year-round quality.”

A Chicago native and a lifelong Chicago Cubs fan, Rich’s professional certifications includes Six Sigma, CNLP (certified nursey and landscape professional) and a lifetime safety ranking from OSHA.

He holds a pesticide applicators license in the states of Illinois and Wisconsin, is a graduate of the New England Tractor Trailer Training School and a veteran of the Illinois Army National Guard.  He attended College of Lake Country in Grayslake, Illinois and was a member of the famed Chicago Second City improvisational theatre group.

Please join us in welcoming Rich to the ELM team.

It’s 2021 Budgeting Season… Three Landscape Trends Re-shaping CRE Outdoor Space

In early 2006, if we were to tell you that your lawn would be mowed by a robot, that the cloud was not a delivery system for rain, and that your sprinklers would be controlled by your iPhone, you would have said, ‘what’s an iPhone?’ 

Because in 2006, the device used by more people in the world than any other, did not exist.

Thirteen years ago, when Apple introduced its smartphone, even the most progressively imaginative among us failed to imagine that a pocket-sized digital tool would have the power to change the nature of our lives and create a boundary-less generation of professionals that could work from anywhere.

Big data, the internet of things, automation, video conferencing, smart technologies and collaborative platforms are, today, all part of landscaper’s tool kit.  

Here are three ways we’re using those tools to partner with commercial real estate professionals to drive continuous improvement.

Making outdoor space the new value-add.

Park-like settings, green spaces, shade tree allées and trails – the functionality of a facilities’ exterior landscaped footprint – are being re-configured to accommodate socialization, benefit health and safety, and create a new way of working and learning outside.

As schools move classrooms outdoors, restaurants expand patios, and health care promotes the therapeutic value of healing gardens, property and facility managers are also looking for opportunities to use outside space as an amenity that can contribute to the wellbeing of their workforce, as well as drive tenant retention.

Our landscape upgrade strategies deliver long term benefits in quality and flexibility, both in use and configuration, with smart technologies to enhance connectivity, and the revitalization of plant material to promote biodiversity and drought tolerance.

Optimizing pedestrian flow as the new outdoor amenity.

Pathways, border areas and buffer zones, plazas, walking corridors, sidewalks, bridge crossing, corners, lighting – landscaping is one of the best ways to control pedestrian flow and safety.  

From proper grading and drainage to hazard management, flow is more than social distancing. Having sufficiently wide, clear pedestrian paths that minimize risk and public space that’s risk free is a security priority. Especially in winter.

Prioritizing green tech as the new way forward.

Being ‘green’ gives property/facility owners and managers a number of ways to save on landscape costs due to tax breaks, incentives or others credits provided by utility companies or federal or state governments. 

And because landscaping is more about the environment than ever, building green tech into landscape’s infrastructure not only qualifies for LEED and green credits, but offer solutions that contribute significant savings to bottoms lines.

From corporate Class A to outdoor classrooms, increasingly sophisticated landscape technologies, biodegradable sanitation and smart sensors are changing the way properties become eco-friendly, energy-efficient and sustainable. These include, innovations in stormwater management, green roofs, water conservation programs, rain gardens and bioswales. 

ELM is not only leading improvements in commercial outdoor space, but building a better platform for service through enhanced communication, accelerated response and delivery, and aerial mapping for site improvements.

To learn more, contact ELM President, Bruce Moore Jr @ 203-316-5433.