Carrie Coyne, SWT Design Senior Associate and Grow Native! Chair, was recently featured in an educational video released by the Missouri Prairie Foundation, titled “Why Prairie Matters.” As landscape architects, in close collaboration with other professionals, we play an increased role in prairie conservation, restoration, and outreach in order to protect and create more wildlife and pollinator habitat, clean more water, and sequester more carbon.
Check it out – “Splash Cove,” the new Humboldt penguin exhibit at Scovill Zoo in Decatur, IL, was featured on local area news this week! This follows the recent grand opening of the exhibit back in August. Video
by David Hunn, St. Louis Post Dispatch, September 26, 2013 Article
by Casey Nolan, KSDK, May 1, 2013, Article and Video
SWT Design, along with its design team, and the Saint Louis Zoo will host a second public open house on the Expansion Framework Plan Wednesday, formal presentations will be held at 4:30pm and 6:00pm on May 1 at the Zoo’s “The Living World,” located at the North Entrance on Government Drive in Forest Park. Our team is looking forward to yet another opportunity to discuss this project with the community and get their feedback on the framework plan.
By Shay Alderman, Southeast Missourian, March 1, 2013, Article
The City of Cape Girardeau, Horner & Shifrin Inc. of St. Louis, SWT Design of St. Louis and Fronabarger Concreters Inc. of Oak Ridge were awarded certificates for Excellence in Revitalization through Placemaking for improvements made as part of the Broadway Corridor Enhancement Project. The project was completed in a six-month period for a cost of approximately $4.5 million. “In true spirit of placemaking, the Broadway streetscape improvements have made it a destination worth visiting and not just a thruway to and from the Mississippi River,” said Mills by news release.
by David Macaulay, Landscape Architecture Magazine, February 2013, Article
On Tuesday, December 11, the Saint Louis Zoo, SWT Design and its team of consultants hosted its first of several public open houses to garner community input on what to make of the old 13 acre Forest Park Hospital site. More than 200 excited and intrigued community members came out to share their ideas and concerns with the design team.
The message – “this is a once-in-lifetime opportunity for the Zoo, and we want to make sure that we do it right.”
After more than seven months, the Decatur Park District Board of Commissioners has approved a $1.4 million bid for construction of the penguin exhibit at Scovill Zoo. SWT Design is leading a team of local zoo consultants for the design and construction of the exhibit. The Decatur Park District expects to have a contractor chosen within the next few weeks.
On Wednesday, Nov. 28, SWT Design was recognized along with the City of Webster Groves for its design of two of the city’s most beloved parks. Margaret Park, located at the corner of Margaret and Atalanta Avenues, was awarded an Honorable Mention in the Category of Landscape Architecture and an Excellence Award in the Category of Craftsmanship. Southwest Park, located on South Rock Hill Road, earned an Excellence Award in the Category of Landscape Architecture.
The design team for Margaret Park included Jim, Ted, Jay and Zach.
The design team for Southwest Park included Jim, Ted, Jay and Derek.
This project and the opportunity to expand is a result of the Saint Louis Zoo Association’s recent purchase of a 13.5-acre site (formerly Forest Park Hospital) at 6150 Oakland Avenue in the City of St. Louis. SWT Design was selected to lead the planning process. Read more about the open house here:
SWT Design’s Co-Founding Principal, Jim Wolterman, was featured this week in the St. Louis Business Journal. The regularly-occuring feature – “St. Louis Character” – highights Jim’s 34-year career, as well as some of the most iconic spaces in the St. Louis region he has helped create.
Read the full article:
SWT Design is now set to do an overlay to its 2010 parks master plan for the City of Clayton after the Board of Alderman authorized a contract to expand on the Shaw Park Master Plan. This will be an extension of our previous work for the city, and will include data collection and analysis, concept design, fundraising graphics, design narratives and policy development
After closing Friday, October 5th on its purchase of the 13.5 acre Forest Park Hospital Site, the Saint Louis Zoo Association announces that SWT Design will lead a team of local firms to create a framework plan for the property. SWT Design will also work closely with Chicago-based architect, Edward Uhlir, who was involved in developing Millennium Park in Chicago.
Jim Wolterman, Co-Founding Principal of SWT Design, has been elevated to the ASLA Council of Fellows for 2012. Jim’s fellowship recognizes his career-long contribution to the profession of Landscape Architecture and to the community based on outstanding leadership and management. Jim has dedicated nearly 35 years to the profession, enriching our built environment and challenging our established perception of sustainable design. Throughout much of his career, Jim’s passion for both design and entrepreneurial exchange has cultivated SWT Design into one of the most sought-after landscape architecture, planning and urban design firms in the Midwest.
Trained as a landscape architect at Iowa State University, Jim began his career in St. Louis working for Hellmuth, Obata & Kassabaum (HOK), one of the largest architecture and planning firms in the world. His work took him throughout the United States, Europe and the Middle East where he spent time in Riyadh Saudi Arabia as on-site landscape architect for the King Suad University project – the world’s largest architectural project of the time. His role as leader, manager and supervisor brought Jim to Webster University in 1990 where he earned a Master of Business Administration – a unique degree combination that enhanced Jim’s business management leadership and led to the creation of two of St. Louis’ most impactful small businesses.
In 1996, after briefly operating his own landscape architecture firm Wolterman Design Collaborative, Jim partnered with Ted Spaid to form St. Louis-based landscape architecture firm SWT Design, Inc. From a modest beginning of three employees to a current staff of more than 20, the firm has created some of St. Louis’ most iconic open spaces, including the St. Louis Art Museum, several projects at the Saint Louis Zoo, and The Muny. SWT Design now leads the world in sustainable design by incorporating innovative techniques with evidence-based design solutions. In 2012, the global headquarters of Novus International, located in St. Charles, Mo., became the highest-rated landscape project in the world under the Sustainable SITES Initiative (SITES) for its sustainable site design, construction and maintenance. SWT Design led the design and construction of the three-star rated project.
In September 2012, SWT Design became the only firm in the world to earn a two-star certification for its campus through SITES. Both Jim and his business partner Ted made a philosophical and financial commitment to design an office that showcases environmental practices such as roof gardens, rain gardens, pervious pavers, solar energy and native, regional planting. By keeping in mind the triple-bottom-line of people, planet and profit, the SWT Design office created a working environment that is respectful to people of the company, the site’s affect on the planet, and the profit opportunities the office presents.
In addition to their efforts to create a more sustainable office campus, Jim and the SWT Design team collaborated with the St. Louis Regional Commerce and Growth Association (RCGA) to become more sustainable as outlined in the RCGA Green Business program. “Jim’s leadership in the business community and the Green Business Challenge was diligent and comprehensive,” said Eric Schneider, Senior Director – Energy and Environment, RCGA. “His coaching and managing of the SWT Design team resulted in an extraordinary effort. Jim’s commitment to the environment is – and will continue to be – a strong contribution to the overall greening of the St. Louis business community.” Last year, SWT Design was recognized for earning the highest point total on the St. Louis Green Business Challenge scorecard.
Jim’s impact on environmental stewardship and the regional economy extends far beyond the drawing board at SWT Design. As Jim was developing Wolterman Design Collaborative in 1993, he simultaneously created one of St. Louis’ largest organic material producers and recyclers, Organic Resource Management, Inc. (ORMI), which he owned and managed until 2010 when the company was sold. Under Jim’s leadership, this state-of-the-art composting facility grew into a multi-million dollar company. ORMI diverted more than two million cubic yards of material from landfills and created a standard of quality for how products are created. During Jim’s time with ORMI, the company was one of the region’s largest recycling centers producing 100,000 cubic yards of organic products annually.
Just as crucial to his success is Jim’s commitment to the community in which he lives. He utilizes both his personal expertise and his resources as a business owner to support design, art, sustainability and financial projects throughout the community. Jim has served on both the City of Webster Groves Community Development Committee and the Webster Groves School District Finance Advisory Committee. As a founding member of the Webster Groves Community Development Committee, Jim helped create an environment that welcomes businesses into the community for a mutually beneficial relationship and economic growth in the area. Just last year, Webster Groves prospered with an economic boom encompassing more than $150 million of housing, retail and infrastructure construction and development – almost unheard of during times of recession. Jim’s seven years of work with the Webster Groves School District Finance Advisory Committee resulted in two bonds, proffering financial stability for the district. These bonds provided millions of dollars for long-delayed updates to the school’s facilities.
For more than 30 years, Jim has continuously challenged himself and those around him to bring landscape architecture and sustainable design to the forefront of public awareness. His entrepreneurial spirit and staunch advocacy of environmental stewardship has earned him a much deserved place in the ASLA Council of Fellows.
Many city residents do not have an opportunity to experience nature first-hand. In 2009, SWT Design partnered with Operation Brightside to change that for some St. Louis residents. Located adjacent to the Brightside offices, the Demonstration Garden and Learning Center serves to connect urban residents with nature and to cultivate environmental stewardship among city residents. Twenty Marines volunteered their time this summer to turn that plan into a reality, and the project was featured in this month’s edition of Missouri Conservationist.
Several months ago, professional gardener and TV host P. Allen Smith invited backyard chicken enthusiasts (and their favorite chicken) to a local Kirkwood residence to share their stories on the benefits of raising chickens. Mindy Tobias of SWT Design and her hen “Tobiko” were featured in the discussion.
Site Specific: A New Sustainable Rating System Aims to Protect and Regenerate the Ecological Capacity of Landscapes By Nancy B. Solomon, AIA, Architectural Record and Greensource, July 2012, Article
by Linda Jarrett, St. Louis Commerce Magazine, July/August 2012, Article
by Diane Keaggy, St. Louis Post Dispatch, June 30, 2012
SWT Design’s Co-Founding Principal Jim Wolterman has received one of the highest honors in our profession – The American Society of Landscape Architecture has elevated Jim to the Council of Fellows, recognizing him for his contribution to landscape architecture and the community in leadership and management. Over the years, Jim’s knowledge and dedication has cultivated SWT Design into a world leader in sustainability and high design, making it one of the most sought-after landscape architecture firms in the Midwest. Jim’s leadership philosophy focuses on the triple bottom line: people, planet and profit – three pillars that measure economic sustainability to include social, environmental and financial measures for sustainable growth.
The designation of Fellow is conferred on individuals in recognition of exceptional accomplishments over a sustained period of time. Jim and 32 other Fellows-elect will be formally recognized this year at the 2012 ASLA Annual Meeting & Expo in Phoenix. Congratulations Jim!
LANDonline, June 12, 2012, Article
Richmond Heights’ outdoor classroom at the Heights complex has earned the national designation of a certified Nature Explore Classroom from the Arbor Day Foundation and Dimensions Educational Research Foundation.
Developed to address a growing disconnect between children and nature, Nature Explore Classrooms are designed to educate young children by integrating nature into daily learning. The classrooms offer interactive elements such as musical instruments made of natural materials, climbing structures, wooden blocks, garden areas, and natural materials for building and creating art.
SWT Design, a planning and landscape architecture firm, led the design of the half-acre outdoor classroom in Richmond Heights. The classroom is part of a larger master plan and connects to an existing playground adjacent to the community’s recreation center.
Suburban Journal, June 2, 2012, Article
by Scott Moyers, Southeast Missourian, June 7, 2012, Article
by Allison Petty, Herald Review, June 6, 2012, Article
LEEDdaily.com, May 21, 2012 Article
Novus Leads the Nation in Building and Landscape Sustainability; Encourages Developers to Adapt to LEED and SITES Concepts
Market Watch – Wallstreet Journal, May 18, 2012, Article
Richmond City Website, May 4, 2012, Article
by Joseph Kenny, St. Louis Review, May 3, 2012, Article
by Sylvia Forbs, St. Louis Homes and Lifestyles, May 2012, Article
Novus International, with its headquarters in St. Louis, was featured on KSDK in an effort to shed light on the new Sustainable Sites Initiative (SITES) rating system. SWT Design led the master plan and construction of this 3-star rated certified project, making it the highest rated landscape project in the world. The project is certified by SITES for its sustainable site design, construction and maintenance.
by Nate Birt, Maplewood-Richmond Heights Patch, April 6, 2012, Article
Landscape Architect and Specifier News, March 2012, Article
- St. Louis Business Journal, February 17-23, 2012, Article
By Marty Ross, The Kansas City Star, February 5, 2012, Article
by Scott Moyers, Southeast Missourian, January 24, 2012, Article
Department of Natural Resources-Partnerships – Essential to Department Goals – Dashboard 2012 Article, Page 8
by Wally Kennedy, The Joplin Globe, January 30, 2012, Article
by Sarah Laskow, Good Environment, January 27, 2012, Article
SWT Design is excited to announce the groundbreaking for the New Mercy Hospital Joplin project. Ceremonies will be held in Joplin, MO on Sunday, January 29, 2012. Groundbreaking will be preceded by ceremonies of recognition and gratitude in preparation for demolition of the tornado destroyed Mercy hospital. Please see the public program for more details.
By Mercy’s Nancy Hughson, January 26, 2012, Article
by Sarah Laskow, Good Environment, January 30 2012, Article
2nd Annual Green Business Challenge Awards- Growing Green Pays Dividends for These Firms & Organizations
by Lisabeth A. Tanz, St. Louis Commerce Magazine – The Green Issue, January-February 2012, Article
The SWT design process is a complex series of steps by which development of initial “Big Ideas” are further distilled and refined in the resolution of multi-faceted design problems using tools and methodologies within an interdisciplinary context. The goal being to arrive at the best possible solution meeting both present and future needs of a client and the built environment as a whole. The design process is not static but transforms to the demands and dimensions of the project’s program which in turn is defined by the client’s needs, desires, site acquisition and / or site opportunities and constraints and finally budget. The client’s project program is typically brief and initially not well defined, demanding it to evolve and determine it’s boundaries in the design process.
In the initial design discourse with the client SWT will formulate a basic foundation and framework upon which the design team will build. A project kick-off session is held where the design principal(s) with a design team engage in a collaborative brain storming workshop of information exchange and incubation of the project’s “Big Ideas” from which design direction and potential alternatives will evolve. The “Big Ideas” come quickly in bold simple graphic plans and sketches, with known site conditions and environmental factors beginning to shape the design direction. From this workshop one “Big Idea” and 1or 2 alternatives will be taken to the next level of design development. In Schematic Design plans showing design intent layout are developed from the “Big Idea” concepts. Scaled plans are produced showing existing and proposed architectural massing; vehicular and pedestrian circulation paths; parking and service; existing and proposed site features; existing and proposed landscape schematics, with proposed topographic changes to the site. These schematic drawings are either hand drawn, or computer generated, or a combination of the two.
Each schematic design is reinforced with plan vignettes, elevations, sections and sketches. To further the client’s understanding of SWT’s design intent, images of built projects and environments from the SWT library that best represents the proposed project are presented. All to engage the client in the decision making and moving the design process forward in its development.
The Schematic Presentation is critical with the volume of material and clear and concise communication of design ideas needed to present and validate multiple design schemes with the goal of culminating with a decision on what scheme, or a combination of schemes to be taken into final design.
Taking client approved schematics into final design the team refines, clarifies and makes whole a design solution best fitting the client’s needs, desires and budget. With hand drawn and computer generated drawings the client has been engaged in the SWT process of resolving their design needs, hopefully exceeding their expectations.
In the summer of 2010, SWT Design was privileged to be a vital member of the Weiss/Manfredi Team for the international competition, “The City + River + Arch: Framing a Modern Masterpiece”. Working directly with Marion Weiss and Michael Manfredi, and their architectural and urban design firm located in New York City, was an amazing experience. Building the right team for such an endeavor is complex. Recognizing the unique nature of the project, the goals set forth by the competition committee, and accurately interpreting local society’s position, required a team that could be integrated quickly and shared common design values.
The core team consisted of SWT Design, Mangnusson Klemencic Associates, D.I.R.T. Studio, Mark Dion and was led by Weiss/Manfredi. This core design team was kept small in order to quickly understand the scope of the 150-acre project and develop a design that would honor the Arch and transform the St. Louis riverfront. Many other team members were identified and engaged to provide pinpoint critique of the concepts as they took shape. The Transpo Group helped formulate complex transportation strategies and Green Shied Ecology provided guidance for the river ecologies.
Though our team placed second for this historic competition, SWT Design is proud to have played such a key role. Teaming with such talented firms help us to continuously hone our skills and view projects from many points of view. Smart team building with diverse expertise can help us be better stewards of our financial and physical resources while enriching our client’s projects.
Each new project creates an opportunity to tailor a unique team to meet specific client values and desired deliverables. We have enjoyed working with many architects, engineers, horticulturalists, planners, economists, artists, ecologists and other specialists to guide our collaborative designs. This not only strengthens our understanding of the built environment, it enriches the final product to better serve our clients.
Landscape & Hardscape Design-Build, October 26, 2011, Article
by April M. Fronick, The People’s Tribune, October 18, 2011, Article
by Marlon Walker, St. Louis Post Dispatch, October 2, 2011, Article
Lawn and Landscape, October 2011, Article
Proposed sculpture park would be at Gore and Kirkham by James Monahan, Webster-Kirkwood Time, September 23, 2011, Article
St. Louis landscape architecture firm, SWT Design, has promoted Carrie Coyne and Klaus-Dieter Rausch to senior associates. SWT Design has experienced continual growth and development over the past 16 years in environmental design excellence working on projects locally, nationally and internationally. The announcement of the senior associate promotions follows the naming of three new principals in March of this year. Lawn and Landscape, August 2011, Article
Environmental Design + Construction, Jim Wolterman, September 2011, Article
Suburban Journal, Steve Pokin, August 26, 2011 Article
Hunter Beckham, RLA, ASLA and principal at St. Louis landscape architecture firm SWT Design, Inc. has been appointed to the University of Arkansas Fay Jones School of Architecture Professional Advisory Board. Construction News and Review, 08-23-2011, Article
Webster Kirkwood Times, August 19, 2011, Article
by Laurie Burstein, St. Louis Commerce Magazine, July 2011, Article
Bowling Green Times, July 13, 2011, Article
Webster to Webster, Summer 2011, Article
Southeastern Missourian, July 13, 2011, Article
SWT Design Takes Home Three Awards, Lawn and Landscape Magazine, June 2011, Article
St Louis Construction News and Review, May 26, 2011, Article
Operation Brightside is a nonprofit that is known for creating colorful gardens around town and removing graffiti. The garden and learning center was designed by the local landscape architectural firm, SWT Design, which includes principals Ted Spaid and Jim Wolterman. Hunter Beckham was lead on the garden.
Garden Pros Tackle an Imaginary Yard, with Real Results, By Shaila Wunderlich, St. Louis At Home Magazine, May/June 2011, Article
St. Louis, Post Dispatch, April 12, 2011, Article
St. Louis Post Dispatch, Tim Bryant, February 4, 2011, Article
Kelsey Volkmann, St. Louis Business Journal, April 2010, Article
edited by Stephen Kelly, Landscape Architect and Specifier News, April 2009, Article
edited by Stephen Kelly, Landscape Architect and Specifier News, October 2008, Article
edited by Stephen Kelly, Landscape Architect and Specifier News, June 2008, Article
By Rachel Kurowski, Special to the Beacon, July 3, 2008, Article
by Kelli Anderson, Recreation Management Magazine, February 2008, Article
by Jami Cale and Elizabeth Perry, St. Louis Suburban Journal, December 2007 Article
St. Louis Magazine, July 2007, Article
by Tim Bryant, St. Louis Post Dispatch, May 2007, Article
by Patrick Thimangu, St. Louis Business Journal, November 17-23, 2006, Article
by Jeannette Batz Cooperman, St. Louis Magazine, November 2006, Article
by Bill Beggs Jr., St. Louis Commerce Magazine, November 2006, Article
by Nina Kult, St. Louis Post Dispatch, November 1, 2006, Article
by Nina Kult, St. Louis Post Dispatch, November 1, 2006 - Article
by Scott Moyers, Southeast Missourian, October 30, 2006, Article
by Jessica Bock, St. Louis Post Dispatch, October 20, 2006, Article
by Scott Moyers, Southeast Missourian, September 26, 2006, Article
by Julia Johnson, St. Louis Business Journal, August 4, 2006, Article
by Robert Sinclair, Spring 2006 Issue, The Western- The Magazine of the Western Nursery and Landscape Association, Article
Construction News and Review, May/June 2006, Article
Healthcare Design Magazine, November 2005, Article
by Ted Spaid, Fall 2005 Issue, The Western- The Magazine of the Western Nursery and Landscape Association, Article
by Jan Niehaus, Construction News and Review, September/October 2005, Article
by Linda F Jarrett, Construction News and Review, September/October 2005, Article
by Robert W. Duffy, Post-Dispatch Architecture Critic, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, December 12, 2004, Article
by Linda Tucci, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, May, 13, 2004
by Ali Cybulski, Interior Landscape Business, April 16, 2004
by Kerry Friedman & Mike Perkowski, Water Shapes Magazine, 2004, Article
by Mark Schlinkmann, St. Louis Post Dispatch, April 13, 2004
A World Outside – Landscape architects design a detailed roof garden, providing a natural escape for patients and families at the St. Louis Children’s Hospital
by Heather Hammatt, ASLA, Landscape Architecture, May 2002
by Greg L. Bernosky, ASLA, October 2000