General Design Category

Recognizes: site-specific works of landscape architecture or urban design. Professional entries in this category must be built; student entries are not required to be built.

Typical entries include: public, institutional, or private landscapes of all kinds (except residential—see residential category); historic preservation, reclamation, conservation; green roofs, stormwater management, sustainable design; design for transportation or infrastructure; landscape art or installation; interior landscape design; and more.

Criteria: The jury will consider the quality of design and execution (for professional entries); design context; environmental sensitivity and sustainability; and design value to the client and to other designers.

Recognition: The Professional Awards Jury and the Student Awards Jury may each select one Award of Excellence and any number of Honor Awards in this category.

Entry Instructions

Entrants in this category will submit:

Official Entry Binder

Upon receipt of the entry form and payment, ASLA will issue an official, numbered entry binder for each project to be submitted. Each entry kit contains a submission binder, forms, and instructions. All submission materials must fit into this binder, which contains 24 page views in an 8.5” x 11” format. The jury will not consider any material that is oversized, behind other items, or submitted outside the binder, and will not remove any materials from the sleeves (such as pamphlets or brochures).

Materials in the binder must not reveal the names of the entrant and/or landscape architects, firms, other designers, students, schools, or photographers. Entrants must use an easily readable typeface, such as Times Roman, Garamond, or Arial, no smaller than 10-point size, for all text. Binder covers may not be altered in any manner.

Entry binders in the General Design Category must contain the following items:

  1. Descriptive Data Summary: The first two (2) views of the entry binder must include a descriptive data summary of up to two (2) typed pages. Briefly describe how sustainability applies to your submission. In particular, identify aspects of the project that address environmental, social, and/or economic sustainability, highlighting attributes of the project directed toward regenerative design or planning. Please use the appropriate form provided for Professionals and for Students.
  2. Site Plan: The third view of the entry binder should be a simple site plan to give the jurors context of the entire project. It should be in 8.5” x 11” format, landscape or portrait orientation.
  3. Drawings and Photographs*: Include at least five (5) but no more than fifteen (15) total drawings and/or photographs of the project. Drawings and photographs must be 8.5” x 11” format, portrait or landscape orientation. Brief captions of no more than 40 words each are to be placed at the bottom of each image or opposite the image in the book.
  4. Plant List: Include a simple list of plants (Latin names are not required) featured in the project.

Concealed Identification and Credit Form

Please list all project credits on the Concealed Identification and Credit Form.


The CD-ROM must contain the contents of the official entry binder and the Concealed Identification and Credit Form as submitted to the awards program. Text documents must be in a word processing application (such as rich text format, MS Word, WordPerfect, WordPad), not a portable document format (.PDF) file. Photographs and drawings must be in .jpg format at a minimum of 300 ppi (pixels per inch). Label each image with the entry number and the number of the image. For example, if the entry number is “123,” label the .jpg files as 123-01, 123-02, 123-03, and so on. Please label the CD-ROM jewel case with the entry number.

*Entrants are responsible for clearing photographs with photographers for publication and reproduction by ASLA. ASLA will provide proper photography and other project credits when using photos, but will not assume responsibility for any copyrights or photography fees. ASLA retains the right to publish photos submitted in winning entries in Landscape Architecture magazine, on the ASLA website, in promoting the awards program, and in other products in conjunction with promoting landscape architecture.