Compliance with building and safety codes, duty to maintenance and repairs, and minimizing risk and liability are among the top five responsibilities of commercial landlords, property managers, and facility engineers.
Upgrades in landscape budgets that address these objectives may often seem daunting, but hardscape projects – structural elements in the landscape such as pavements, pathways, retaining walls, drainage systems, and other architectural features – are important safety and outdoor infrastructure priorities.
For institutions and commercial properties seeking LEED® certification or working to be greener, repairs and renovation to landscape enhancements that add to the site’s sustainability, and enhance functionality and curb appeal can also contribute to the site as a more profitable and environmentally-responsible asset value.
For its part, ELM considers landscape budgeting to be a collaborative process and works with property and facility managers to plan for contingencies, like winter, extreme weather and drought.
ELM recommends looking several years ahead to address capital investment goals for long-term and long-overdue projects, such as environmental compliance, addressing site-specific continuity, and optimizing functionality.
Shorter-term priorities should address improving the look and feel of the landscape, creating a safer property environment that benefits tenants, implementing conservation-based upgrades to optimize water and eliminate waste, addressing standards of care and environmental safety, and updating outdated structural elements.
A strategic option to offset drought concerns would be to substitute rock slabs, stepping stones, decorative gravel, or porous alternatives on pathways to direct rainfall and irrigation water back into the ground, constructing bioswales and drainage systems, and converting underutilized turf to perennial alternatives.
All ELM landscape projects incorporate sustainable practices, low impact development strategies and opportunities for utilization of green practices.
To learn more about making profitable landscape improvements, managing soil erosion, increasing storm water efficiency, and improving the long-term health and viability of your site, contact Bruce Moore, Jr., Vice President, Operations at 203-316-5433.
Photo: ELM’s hardscape solution for a storm water retention basin at Stamford Hospital, Stamford, CN combined quality materials and design-driven construction with careful consideration of technical and sustainable requirements. The drainage improvement project will carry runoff and improve water quality by infiltrating storm flow. The project was completed end of June, 2017. ©ELM2017