The Australian Institute of Landscape Architects (AILA) has revealed the winners of the 2020 National Landscape  architecture Awards in its first ever virtual awards program.

AILA recognised 46 winners across 15 categories for exceptional practice, validating talent, commitment, and design  excellence. Among the total winners, 13 Awards of Excellence were delivered, acknowledging the most significant of work for advancement in landscape architecture.

AILA CEO Ben Stockwin says, “The pandemic brings many challenges but also presents an abundance of opportunities for landscape architects, so it was important that we were able to hold the Awards this year, to encourage innovation and excellence in built and natural environments, as we do each year. We were thrilled with the submissions that we’re received this year, and despite the global pandemic, the State and National Awards saw record-number submissions, which just highlights the importance of our public spaces in a time such as now.”

Mr Stockwin said the Jury was pleased to see diversity and equity were consistent themes throughout the Awards this year. “We were particularly delighted in the strong presence of work that involved true indigenous involvement and outcomes, work that catered for the disadvantaged or less able in society, and the strong representation of small space and gardens. The Jury has recognised a handful of true standout projects in this space.”

A hero in its category which recognises significant and in-depth inclusion of cultural values and knowledge, North Gardens Sculpture Park Landscape Master Plan received the Cultural Heritage Award of Excellence. The collaborative force of Mandy Nicholson of Tharangalk Art, Glenn Romanis and Isobel Paton of BASALT Art Landscape Sculpture, and David S. Jones of Deakin University produced a strong and genuine consultation process with traditional custodians with Wadawurrung concepts of nurturing, healing, learning, sharing and cultural relationship building.

“Collectively, this year’s recipients continued to demonstrate and advocate the demand for excellence in landscape architecture, in both built and natural environments, that is essential to Australia and its people,” said Mr Stockwin.

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