Lessons from a Landscape Architect Infiltrator

Lessons from a Landscape Architect Infiltrator


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The education received as a landscape architect extends beyond what is needed to work at a design firm. Greg will share some of the insights learned of how the education of a landscape architect can be applied to other disciplines in shaping the built environment.

Greg Montgomery (BLA 1980) is the present Planning Division Manager for Ogden, Utah. After graduating from Utah State, he worked for Ogden City for a year under a federal grant program called UPARR (urban park and recreation recovery). This opportunity of assessing the city parks and infrastructure allowed him to work with the city’s planning office. Greg took advantage of this opportunity to do as Ian McHarg, encouraged students to do a year earlier when he was a guest lecturer in the LAEP department. McHarg’s challenge was for “students trained in Landscape Architecture to infiltrate into all disciplines and public realms.” Greg shared with the two planners assigned to the city, design principles that could help them as the city was going into a transition phase with the opening a new downtown mall.

In the fall of 1981, Ogden City created its own planning department, separate from Weber County and Greg was offered a position with that transition. He has spent forty years working in the planning division. The first challenge began with helping the city see the need or requiring landscaping for commercial development. The challenges only became larger over the years. Greg received his American Institute of Certified Planners certificate in 1991. Over time, the planning division’s influence grew to encouraging the development of the Ogden River Trail system, the protection of the foothills and the development of Ogden’s Bonneville Shore line trail and the connecting trail system, the development of the Municipal Gardens into a connected open green space in the center of the city, the preservation of Ogden’s historic resources, especial Historic 25th Street which was named in 2014 by the American Planning Association as one of the “Great American Streets.” The most recent city development came from the LAEP 2018 fall urban design studio which produced the “Reinventing the Rails Merging East and West”. That project became the impetus for the “Make Ogden” downtown redevelopment plan which was approved in the fall of 2020.


Utah State University

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Landscape Architect, Built Environment, Design Firm


Environmental Design | Landscape Architecture | Urban, Community and Regional Planning

Lessons from a Landscape Architect Infiltrator