From the Fairfield County Business Journal, September 17, 2022
by Edward Arriaza
Eastern Land Management (ELM) has recently been awarded the Silver Award of Excellence by the National Association of Landscape Professionals (NALP) for its renovation of Kiwanis Park, a placemaking and urban renewal project of Downtown Stamford’s Special Services District. In addition to Kiwanis Park, ELM was honored for developing a streetscape design in the heart of the downtown business district that included 250 hanging baskets, foliage containers and refurbished annual beds.
Founded in 1976 by Bruce Moore Sr., the Stamford-based company provides full-service landscaping and snow removal services and has 120 seasonal employees who work as landscape gardeners, landscape crew leaders, heavy equipment mechanics and plant health care technicians. According to Bruce Moore Jr., the son of the founder and ELM’s president, the company began “with a vision to maintain commercial properties in Westchester and Fairfield County” and later added New Haven County to its service area.
Moore knew he wanted to join the business when he was young, and immediately went to work for the company in 2005 upon graduating college.
“Growing up in the business, I really grew a liking to working with all the different people and working with horticulture and seeing what goes into the maintenance and snow removal of all these properties,” Moore said. “It was something that I always was passionate about.”
As a full-service land management company, ELM is able to act as a single-source provider for its clients, offering landscape management, water management and snow removal all in one.
“All those services are provided by our own personnel,” Moore said. “The customer has a single point of contact to use for pretty much the entire exterior of their facility.”
Among the services ELM provides for landscape management are turf fertilization, lawn mowing, tree and shrub pruning and integrated pest management. For water management, ELM provides troubleshooting and repairs, scheduled maintenance programs and system design and installation, among other services.
Moore believed that ELM’s award-winning work brought life to the underutilized Kiwanis Park, making it a “more welcoming, cleaner space.”
“What was originally just a cut through from lower Summer Street to Atlantic Street now is more of a place for people to sit, relax, hang out or have a conversation with friends, have a bite to eat and just in general socialize and mingle with people,” Moore said.
Though ELM has received accolades for its quality of work, it has still experienced its share of difficulties — the sharp increase in fuel and wages due to inflation has been felt acutely by Moore and the daily price fluctuations of material has required ELM to reach out to its vendors constantly in order to have up-to-date prices.
“We are working pretty hard every day to try our best to not pass off a lot of those increased costs to our customers,” Moore said. “We’re trying to manage it to the best of our ability, but we have had to make some adjustments over the last year to accommodate for all of the inflation on material prices.”
ELM has also dealt with labor shortages, facing some difficulties in recruiting people for its production teams. However, it had no issues in maintaining its workers the past couple of years and has even brought on board an employee relations coordinator to amplify employees’ voices. As a result, ELM has increased wages and implemented recruiting bonuses.
“We’ve made a big adjustment to ensure that we’re working really hard to become an employer of choice, and to make sure that we’re retaining our people,” Moore said.
Moore added that ELM will continue to keep its eyes on the changing weather and preparing for the first storm of the season.
“Right now, we’re working to allocate equipment and ensure that we have everything in place and prepared to go for the upcoming winter season,” he said.
Original can be found at Westfaironline.com: https://westfaironline.com/real-estate/eastern-land-management-wins-an-award-for-its-urban-renewal-work/
Photo: © PJ Kennedy