David Gjertson

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"Be cheerful, enjoy life and take nothing for granted."

David Gjertson
Architect & Planner

According to the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA), “Landscape architecture encompasses the analysis, planning, design, management and stewardship of the natural and built environment.” My practice as a landscape architect has spanned more than thirty years. Areas of specialization include; design of public spaces for urban redevelopment, neighborhood revitalization, and implementation of park and recreation facilities. This experience has given me recognition as an expert in philosophies of Smart Growth and New Urbanism and I have applied this knowledge to hundreds of projects. That includes extensive project management and team building experience in all manner of urban planning and landscape architecture projects.

I earned a BS in Landscape Architecture from the University of Wisconsin and convinced a stern Dean of Architecture at the University of Minnesota that I was suited for a masters degree in architecture. I left the program unfinished after I had missed the land stewardship aspects of landscape architecture. Much later earned a planners certification through American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP) and have tested the notion that landscape architects can become excellent planners.

An interesting aspect of a long career is seeing your projects designed, built and age gracefully. I designed a small urban plaza in Tampa, Florida at the age of 28 and diligently photographed it about every two to four years. Watching the plaza age over thirty years has been altogether fascinating and educational. By size and complexity, this space is a microcosm of the landscape architecture design. It has living tissue in the form of trees and landscaping and hardscape designed for heavy and protracted use. Its volume and spatial relationships have evolved making for an interesting study. I have photos to share on this web site.

I now enjoy mentoring young professionals and giving back the knowledge I have acquired over four decades. My focus is now on sharing design notes and anecdotes with inclusion of project images past and present.

My son Eric is a gifted artist and through a father’s eyes far exceeds my abilities. The reader will decide the truth of that statement through examples of his sketch work included in these pages.

Be cheerful, enjoy life and take nothing for granted.