National President's Message - 30 March 2015

Over the past few weeks I have discovered how advanced the planning for the 2015 Festival of Landscape Architecture is. The official launch of the event is on 16 April with the Festival at Federation Square in Melbourne from 15 – 17 October. The creative directors have been busy assembling an impressive list of speakers who will explore the theme of “this public life”. Stay tuned for more details over the coming weeks and if you missed the Festival last year make sure you start you don’t miss out this year.

It is a terrific time to be exploring of the contribution landscape architects make to public life. Landscape architects are increasingly involved in the development of city shaping strategies and projects and at the same time increasingly being employed within government including more senior roles. I was in Canberra last week and as I travelled between meetings I was reminded of the level of contribution the profession has made to the city. Canberra is the perfect place for landscape architects from across Australia and overseas to come together in celebration of 50 years of achievement in 2016.

Whilst in Canberra I attended a breakfast meeting with local members. It was great to hear how the profession is progressing locally as well as member thoughts on significant local projects such as the Canberra light rail and the connection of city centre to Lake Burley Griffin. It is exciting to see the how Canberra is being revitalised by new investment from both government and the private sector.

Last week we also had over 45 people gather in Newcastle to attend the Regional Connect event. We done to David Toovy and the NSW for organising the successful event which explored issues associated with regional practice. The discussion with regionally based members helps AILA to understand the areas of need as well as the best way to provide information and support. A lot of progress on regional issues has been made in recent times and we look forward to further member advice from the regional working group.

Mark Frisby

AILA National President

Australian Institute of Landscape Architects

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