12:00 - 1:00 PM
About the Presentation:
In this webinar, Emily Manderson and John Hart Asher of Blackland Collaborative Inc. will provide an overview of Low Impact Development and Native Prairie Green Roof practices based upon their firm’s research, design, and installation projects that they have been involved with in Texas. They will talk about their research background, design process, plant selections, implementation practices, maintenance requirements, and associated costs of these types of green infrastructure systems.
Innovative green infrastructure solutions are increasingly needed in the urban environment especially in light of the dramatic swings in temperatures that central Texas and the US have experienced in the past few years alone. Texas’ diverse landscapes and ecotypes have provided us with an ecological toolset that we can utilize within our cities to form hybrid components that incorporate built and natural elements. System based design strategies, such as LID and native prairie green roofs, are successful because they acknowledge and emphasize the complex relationships and functional process of ecosystems rather than trying to solve challenges through static reactionary responses that are too often focused on a singular outcome.
Emily and John Hart will speak to the benefits of such an approach through the lens of their projects and answer questions that attendees might have about helping modify degraded urban conditions for a better and biodiverse future.
About the Speakers:
John Hart Asher (full bio) has more than 15 years’ experience designing and building functional ecosystems within urban conditions. He has conducted basic research in ecological engineering, ecological restoration, and land management, offered workshops to professionals and the general public, and provided fee-supported ecological consulting expertise to clients across Texas.
As part of the consulting team, John Hart works with integrated design teams composed of engineers, architects, landscape architects, and developers to integrate sustainable design, practices, and philosophies into projects. He specializes in translating sustainable design into successful projects that provide varying layers of ecosystem services. His main interest is the application of ecological design, resulting in functional sustainable landscapes within urban ecologies. A few of his current projects include: Tall grass prairie restoration in an urban riparian corridor, green roof research and implementation, water conservation, soil remediation, sustainable roadsides, and green infrastructure.
Emily Manderson (full bio)works to provide ecological expertise to a variety of project types such as developing Best Management Practices for the Houston Parks Board to working on Master Plans and facilitating visioning sessions. From 2014-2020, Emily was the Conservation Director at the Houston Arboretum and Nature Center; a 155 acre nature sanctuary in the heart of central Houston. She oversaw the restoration and management of the site’s ecosystems and the landscape implementation of an ASLA awarded master plan to increase biodiversity and ecosystem resilience in the face of future climatic events.
In 2021 The Arboretum was awarded the Development of Distinction award from the Urban Land Institute (ULI) Houston. Before working at the Arboretum, Emily worked as a Senior Environmental Designer and Consulting Manager at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center in Austin, TX for many years on numerous high-level ecological projects such as the George Bush Presidential Center. She also co-taught UT Architecture graduate students on the practices and principles of Sustainable Sites Initiative (SITES).