The Virginia Tech Community Design Assistance Center, an outreach center of the College of Architecture and Urban Studies, was recently awarded the 2014 Gold Leaf Award for Outstanding Landscape Beautification Activities from the Mid-Atlantic Chapter of the International Society of Arboriculture.

The center received the award for assisting under-served communities throughout the state by improving the natural environment through design and planning.

The center has worked with the Virginia Department of Forestry on more than 75 projects in the past 15 years providing forestry-related planning and design assistance. The projects have focused on creating healthy environments that consider the physical and emotional well-being of users as well as the health of the environment.

“The Community Design Assistance Center serves a valuable role as an outreach center for our college, as well as providing our students an opportunity to get involved in hands-on projects and simultaneously make a positive impact through their work,” said Jack Davis, Reynolds Metals Professor of Architecture and dean of the College of Architecture and Urban Studies.

The Community Design Assistance Center has created numerous conceptual designs and master plans that have led to positive changes in communities in Virginia and beyond. Their concepts and designs can help communities raise the funding needed to make major changes a reality. 

One example is the town of Cleveland, Virginia, where the center’s plans for a redesigned ball park and river walk have helped the community raise approximately $800,000.

The International Society of Arboriculture is a nonprofit organization of arborists, urban foresters, and others involved in the caring of trees. 



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