The Canadian Society of Landscape Architects was founded in 1934. The founding members of the Society were:

  • Carl Borgstrom
  • Humphrey Carver
  • Gordon Culham
  • Howard B. Dunington-Grubb
  • Lorrie A. Dunington-Grubb
  • Edwin Kay
  • Helen M. Kippax
  • Frances C. Steinhoff
  • J. Vilhelm Stensson

By that time, landscape architects were active in all major centres across Canada in the design and planning of parks, open spaces, public institutions, roadways, neighbourhoods and communities. Landscape architect Frederick Todd, for example, was instrumental in the early 1900s in the design of Mount Royal Park in Montreal and the design of Ottawa's scenic driveways and urban green spaces. Later he designed the neighbourhood of Mount Royal in Montreal.

Following World War II, landscape architects became involved in the design and planning of new communities, national and provincial parks, tourism facilities, institutions and corporate sites. Landscape architects played lead roles in the design of Expo 67 in Montreal.

In the mid-1960's, professional programs in landscape architecture were initiated at the Universities of Guelph, Manitoba, and Toronto. A few years later, programs were established at the University of British Columbia and the University of Montreal, and a program in landscape architectural technology was initiated at Ryerson Polytechnical University.

Demand for the services of landscape architects has grown steadily in Canada, particularly over the past two decades. Landscape architects today are engaged in the design, planning and management of urban, rural and natural environments in all Canadian provinces and territories and in many countries worldwide. Canadian landscape architects are well-regarded for their creativity, their sensitivity and their practicality in all aspects of professional practice.

A Pocket History

Doug Clark compiled this 180-year journey through time for CSLA's professional journal  Landscapes / Paysages. Download a PDF of A Pocket History

Timeline of the CSLA


In March, at the Royal York Hotel in Toronto, the Canadian Society of Landscape Architects and Town Planners is formed with Gordon Culham (President), Howard Dunnington-Grubb (Vicepresident), Frances Steinhoff (Secretary-Treasurer) and Carl Borgstron and Edwin Kay (Councilors). Also present: Laurie Dunnington-Grubb, Humphrey Carver, J.V. Stensson, Helen Kipax and Frances Blue.


CSLA introduces its first national landscape architectural publication, The Canadian Landscape Architect

Three CSLA chapters are created: Montreal/Ottawa, Central Canada and the Prairie/Pacific Coast

CSLA introduces its first newsletter, entitled Land Design.

First class of Fellows are invested to the College of Fellows

CSLA is restructured into a federation of provincial and regional component associations. Edwin Skapsts, Jack
Walker and Clive Justice lead the restructuring.

First CSLA annual Congress is held in Vancouver

In March, the CSLA creates a quarterly, bilingual publication entitled Landscape Architecture in Canada, edited by Moura Quayle

CSLA governance structure of regional representatives led by a nationally elected president is established

In April, the last issue of Landscape Architecture in Canada is published

In November, the CSLA publishes the Landscape Architectural Review (LA Review) “to provide a forum for the presentation and promotion of landscape architecture” under the CSLA aegis and every CSLA member receives a copy.

The Professional Awards Program is launched and awarded in 1984, under the leadership of Arnis Budrevics, based on the OALA's awards. Categories include design, planning and research. The design category includes recreational, residential, commercial, industrial, institutional, and historical divisions as well as
urban design and transport.

CSLA introduces a bilingual news bulletin and Lombard North Group develops the first computerized CSLA membership roster

In January, LA Review becomes a bilingual publication and is renamed Landscape Architecture Review/Revue d’architecture de paysage. It will be published until 1993.

Ron Williams and others build on the work of Peter Jacobs, Jack Milliken and John Consolati to create a CSLA accreditation system for Canadian universities. University of Guelph is the first school accredited (1986)

In July, Pierre Vachon becomes the first employee of the CSLA as Executive Director

Landscape Architecture Canada Foundation (LACF) is established

In the Fall, the first Issue of LANDSCAPES|PAYSAGES, magazine, edited by Cecilia Paine, is published, with the help of funds from the LACF

Fran Pauzé joins the CSLA as Executive Director.

Paulette Vinette appointed CSLA Executive Director

Elizabeth Sharpe appointed CSLA Executive Director

Michelle Legault appointed CSLA Executive Director

CSLA adopts a proactive congress planning model working in partnership with component associations

CSLA brokers a Reciprocity Agreement which is signed by 8 or 9 component associations; that agreement is renewed in 2020 with all component associations as signatories

Established the CSLA Climate Change Task Force, which became the Committee on Climate Adaptation

CSLA certificate of continuance approved by the Government of Canada under the Not for Profit Act

Ron Williams pubishes Landscape Architecture in Canada and, with the LACF, the CSLA organizes and funds a cross-Canada book tour

Launched a compensation and benefits study of the profession, which was renewed in 2019

CSLA and component associations sign a terms of reference which guides the roles and responsibilities of the organizations

CSLA establishes the Canadian Landscape Charter

In cooperation with the Canadian Nursery Landscape Association, published the Canadian Landscape Standard, and published a second edition in 2020

Governor General's Medal in Landscape Architecture, approved in 2014, is awarded to Cornelia Hahn Oberlander

Indigenous Issues Task Force is established, which became the Reconciliation Advisory Committee

Associates (interns) and students admitted as CSLA members

Katherine Velluso joins the CSLA team as Communications Coordinator

Service agreement with LACF is concluded whereby the CSLA Executive Director becomes LACF Executive Director

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