Earth Day Musing



by Patrick Donnelly, AIA, LEED AP
Associate Principal, Director of Sustainable Design

Recent conversations in the office have focused on the words “community” and “belonging”, and how we might understand them in the context of architectural design. It just so happens that lately I have been revisiting A Sand County Almanac by Aldo Leopold. Published in 1949, it remains one of the greatest collections of ecologically-focused writing. I was struck by the clarity and simple truth of the following two sentences:

“We abuse land when we regard it as a commodity belonging to us. When we see land as a community to which we belong, we may begin to use it with love and respect.”

This is radical inclusivity. When we think about sites, about place, about who belongs to what, I suggest we keep Aldo Leopold in mind.