Green Building Perspectives: John C. Carter & Company

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When we were evaluating landscape architects for the Green life Smart Life project, we were thrilled to find a highly qualified and conscientious firm almost quite literally in our back yard. John C. Carter & Company has built a solid local reputation in site analysis and master planning, landscape design, construction management and environmental permitting. They know all of the ins and outs of local laws and zoning regulations, and are particularly skilled in working in coastal areas. In short, they brought everything we needed to the table.

When we asked John if he anticipates that green and eco-conscious designs will ever dominate his business, he replied, “Absolutely! They already do!” Yep, John’s our kinda guy.

We recently asked John to take a few minutes out of his day and give his green thumbs and fingers a brief rest to answer a few questions.

What do you think of the Green Life Smart Life Project? What interested you in it?

I think it is fantastic because all of the discussions revolving around the word “green” are beginning to sound transparent. Green banks, green grocery stores…everyone is using the phrase, but this project is actually putting the concept to use in construction so that people can see and understand what it means. The public relations on the GLSL project has been great. Bringing all of this to the public is very positive.   

As a landscape architect, you could say you’ve been part of the “green” ecosystem for quite some time. What do you bring to the “green” table? And how are you evolving to meet developing “green” practices?

For many years, the landscape and nursery business has been called the “green industry”. Landscape architects are trained to be stewards of the land. The recent awareness of the need to incorporate environmentally friendly practices into building projects is an affirmation of the stewardship principals in which we are trained.

Where do you see green building/living going in the next five years, and how will it impact your business?

Our business practices are always evolving to meet the needs of our clients, the changes in regulations and the available technologies. In the future, I think there will be a shift in that our clients will come to us requesting that we incorporate green building techniques into our designs. Historically, it was our role to try and bring green building concepts to the project. 

What challenges does “green” present your business?

A landscape architect can bring some very real contributions to a building project that will result in a more sustainable and environmentally sound project. Our main challenge will be to maintain integrity and not get caught up in a lot of meaningless rhetoric.

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