Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 70.90
Liaison Steve Mital
Submission Date Aug. 1, 2023

STARS v2.2

University of Oregon
OP-9: Landscape Management

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.29 / 2.00 Rosalee Clanton
Landscape Maintenance Supervisor
Facilities Services
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Total campus area:
615 Acres

Figures required to calculate the total area of managed grounds:
Area (double-counting is not allowed)
Area managed organically, without the use of inorganic fertilizers and chemical pesticides, fungicides and herbicides 33 Acres
Area managed in accordance with an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) program that uses selected chemicals only when needed 80 Acres
Area managed using conventional, chemical-based landscape management practices 0 Acres
Total area of managed grounds 113 Acres

A brief description of any land excluded from the area of managed grounds:
615 acres reflects the total campus acreage, including satellite campuses. The UO maintains 113 acres of landscape on the main campus in Eugene. The other University spaces use local best practices as follows: The Oregon Institute of Marine Biology (OIMB) maintains an estuary space in partnership with other institutions. The Shire on the Columbia River is maintained with minimal grass mowing; no additional treatments are applied.

Percentage of grounds managed organically:

A brief description of the organic landscape management program:
29% of the landscape is managed organically a portion of this landscape is a natural area. The children centers are included in this percentage along with one residence hall and one parking garage landscape. The groundskeeper in these areas uses organic fertilizers and no herbicides, rather they manually and mechanically remove weeds. Large part of the organic program is prevention, we use mulch to suppress the weed seeds.


"The University of Oregon will issue a central contract for pest control. Both the university Business Affairs Office (BAO) and Environmental Health & Safety (EHS) must sign a variance before any vendor other than the contracted vendor may provide pest control services. Contractors will comply with the program or receive a written exception from EHS prior to treatment if there is any deviation from the program."

Percentage of grounds managed in accordance with an IPM program:

A copy of the IPM plan or program:
A brief description of the IPM program:
The University of Oregon's Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Program is required by ORS 634.650-670. The objective of this program is to maintain pest populations below action threshold levels while insuring minimal human exposure to health risks, inflicting minimal hazards on the environment, providing for effective monitoring through inspections and standardized record-keeping, and evaluating the effect of the IPM practices.

A brief description of the institution's approach to plant stewardship:
The UO Eugene uses native plant species or their analogs that are adapted to climate zone whenever possible, while also paying attention to climate change by shifting toward drought-tolerant species in current and future plantings. The campus is characterized as an arboretum-like environment containing approximately 4,000 trees (according to the Campus Tree Plan http://map.uoregon.edu/campusmaps/treeatlas.pdf), with approximately two dozen native species of trees. This plan outlines tree protection and preservation measures that go back historically. A plant-rich environment, there is ample habitat for wildlife, especially birds.

There are many existing buildings that meet LEED Gold or even Platinum standards, while all new buildings are required to do so. Many projects meet LEED requirements for ecologically appropriate plantings. Example: Lewis Integrative Science Building is the first LEED Platinum Higher Education Laboratory Building in Oregon and earned points for using climate-appropriate landscaping that requires minimal maintenance in addition to preserving two existing Oaks by raising pathways to protect new and existing roots.

Regarding satellite locations: OIMB is zoned for forest and all plants are replaced by native plants that are low maintenance including shore pines, ground cover of kinnikinnick, salal, huckleberries and others. There are some legacy trees on the OIMB campus, including fruit trees.

The Shire protects and restores meadow and woodland habitat for the cultural and ecological benefits, including the restoration of a salmon oxbow stream in partnership with the Cowlitz Tribe. They have a full time horticulturalist that prevents the spread of invasive species mostly through mowing and limited spraying.

UO Portland is mostly composed of concrete with some city-managed trees out by the street. The Pine Mountain Observatory is situated in the Oregon Coast Range in the Deschutes Forest at 6,300 feet and indirectly protects and preserves this leased property in a collaborative way.

A brief description of the institution's approach to hydrology and water use:
UO Maintains a comprehensive environmental Policy including stormwater management, available here: https://cpfm.uoregon.edu/Policy-Sustainability

A summary of this document includes the following: "The University of Oregon owns and maintains a significant stormwater management system across campus. The system includes over 49 miles of stormwater pipe and over 4400 stormwater structures. This document describes the university’s stormwater facilities, records management, and maintenance practices."

For UO Eugene, all development must meet standards for minimizing impervious surfaces and providing natural infiltration for rainwater (for example we have bioswales, rain gardens, flow through planters, and green roofs). Landscape practices prioritize water retention over drainage in piped systems.

Strict city ordinances guide most of our practices including two relevant goals related to this credit:

“(1) Reduce runoff pollution from development by reducing impervious surfaces and capturing and treating approximately 80% of the average annual rainfall and

(2) Except as otherwise allowed by this land use code, allow disturbances or development within drainage ways only when all of the following conditions exist:

(a) The disturbance or development will not impede or reduce flows within the drainage way;
(b) The disturbance or development will not increase erosion downstream;
(c) The constructed pipe system is sized to convey all of the runoff from the upstream watershed when the upstream watershed is completely developed."

(Section 9.6790 added by Ordinance No. 20369).

Regarding the satellite locations: OIMB has wetlands that run through the campus, which started as an underground ditch that drained the forest. In 1980, it was turned into an open stream that runs into the bay that is now salmon bearing as the ODFW now uses it as an area to release smolt and there is a salmon ladder. Wastewater runoff goes into county sewer drain. The streams and ditches are left alone. The roofs are drained to the gutter systems that also go out to the harbor. Only about 5% of campus water (besides the roof) goes into storm drains because of the sand, runs off into the grass and soaks in. The water way is not prone to flooding, even when hit by a big storm. Only when high winds hit does water temporarily flow in with puddles here and there.

The Shire is on Columbia River so has US Army Corps of Engineers hydrologic restrictions on the riverfront. The Cowlitz tribe is involved currently with a water quality study as the geologic formations have shifted and made the water rusty so they are concerned about water quality and permeability. The goal is to create ideal salmon habitat by reestablishing and restoring the oxbow creek as a salmon habitat. Because it is on the north side of the Columbia River, the land slopes gradually to the river but floods infrequently. They do not and cannot change the flood plain. There is one stream on the property that drains directly into the Columbia River. Water temperatures is 55 degrees, much colder (and therefore better for salmon) than the Columbia, which can be 10-15 degrees warmer in the summer months.

A brief description of the institution's approach to landscape materials management and waste minimization:
The UO Eugene Campus composts 100 percent of its yard waste at the Facility Services complex and then returns the compost to campus when it is ready. It also mills the wood from fallen trees on campus to be used as finished lumber around campus. For example, Milled wood has been used in Ford Alumni Center, Allan Hall, Tykeson Hall, for paneling, artwork, and cabinetry. Grass trimmings are not usually collected and are returned or left on the lawn. During the Fall, Grounds Maintenance uses the collection system to pick up leaves for composting (also at the Facilities Services complex).

Regarding the satellite locations: The OIMB buildings are on sand and surrounded by native plants. Most of the landscaping work involves leaf blowing and mowing where material is left in place or put in brush piles.

The Shire minimizes its impact as much as possible, letting nature take its course to maintain the historically-altered landscape by mowing and brush cutting and composting waste. This way of having minimal contact requires their horticulturist to work full time through all of the seasons.

A brief description of the institution's approach to energy-efficient landscape design:
The UO maintains a Campus Outdoor Lighting Plan which is part of the Campus Plan and has a guideline to maximize energy conservation. See Principle 2, of the UO Campus Plan: https://cpfm.uoregon.edu/campus-plan.

"All building projects must include an appropriate budget to install a landscape plan that meets the Plan patterns and principles.
(a) Landscape materials are assets to the
campus and are to be carefully selected
and properly maintained. The university
campus is in fact an arboretum. The plant
materials on the campus have an aesthetic
significance and constitute a valuable
teaching resource.
(b) Vegetation should be planted and managed
to avoid excessive damage to buildings,
reduce susceptibility to pest infestation,
minimize reliance upon the use of
pesticides, and contribute to the aesthetic
quality and enjoyment of the campus as a
whole. Refer to the Campus Construction
(c) Landscaping quickly loses its value if it is
not well maintained. Materials likely to
require excessive maintenance should be
avoided or judiciously located.
(d) Appropriate Facilities Services personnel
shall be consulted before planting any new
plant materials on the campus.
(e) Whenever possible and appropriate, plant
materials are to be used to screen such
uses as parking lots and service areas and
to soften the visual impact of fences and
similar barricades.
(f) In approving a schematic design that
requires the removal of trees or significant
plant materials, the Campus Planning
Committee shall be satisfied that
alternative designs not involving the
removal have been prepared and carefully
explored and that the Tree Replacement
Requirements have been met. Refer to the
Campus Tree Plan.
(g) Trees that help form or reinforce the
identity of Designated Open Spaces and
Pathways are significant trees and are to
be afforded extra care. Refer to “Principle
12: Design Area Special Conditions” (page
78) and the Campus Tree Plan.
(h) When proposed development may
negatively impact trees, it is important to
define the significance of the affected
trees. Every effort should be made to
preserve significant trees. Significant
trees include those that have historical
association, have educational value, are
an excellent species example, or are
designated in memory or in honor of an
individual. Refer to the Campus Tree Plan
for a complete description of the required
34 UNIVERSITY OF OREGON - Fourth Edition, 2019
(i) Select and position landscape materials to
aid in achieving energy efficiency. Take
advantage of trees to reduce cooling loads
and use hedgerows or shrubbery to help
channel cool summer breezes into the
(j) Protect wetlands, wildlife habitats, and
watersheds to the greatest extent possible.
(k) Consider how the landscaped areas are
linked to one another and create natural
corridors for plants and birds. Integrate
bird food sources and shelter. Tie these
corridors in with the established openspace
(l) Use native or well-adapted species for
landscaping when appropriate while
recognizing the importance of a variety of
plant materials necessary for instructional
(m) Maintain an Integrated Pest Management
approach, which carefully considers plant
selection and design and minimizes use of
herbicides, pesticides, fertilizers, and
(n) Work to preserve the integrity of the site,
in particular trees, significant plant
materials, and topsoil. First consider
development on previously disturbed areas."

Campus Tree Plan (available here: https://cpfm.uoregon.edu/trees) recognizes the benefit of using "Select tree species and locations that provide maximum southwest and west-side shade for buildings, cool air temperatures through evapotranspiration."

A brief description of other sustainable landscape management practices employed by the institution:
Landscape practices, including maintaining or developing open landscapes.

Available in Principle 2 of the Campus Plan (available here: https://cpfm.uoregon.edu/campus-plan )
All new construction development projects must enhance or establish Designated Open Spaces within their Design Areas as part of the project scope. This requirement is in addition to enhancing or establishing landscaping within the immediate building site (entrances, foundation plantings, small courtyards, etc.). When a project’s schematic design is reviewed by the Campus Planning Committee, the committee will determine that the following minimum standards for enhancing Designated Open Spaces are being met. The committee may take the additional step of recommending to the president that sufficient funding be established within the project budget to accomplish these improvements and that this funding be protected should the project face budget reductions during subsequent design or construction phases.

PRINCIPLE 2 UNIVERSITY OF OREGON - Fourth Edition, 2019 33
Building Size Minimum Required
(gsf) Designated Open Space (sf)
0 - 24,999 10% of gsf
25,000 - 49,999 12% of gsf
50,000 - 99,999 14% of gsf
100,000 and up 16% of gsf
Requirements for open-space enhancement and development in the East Campus Area are elaborated in the 2003 Development Policy for the East Campus Area. (a) As a general rule (subject to Campus Planning Committee interpretation), each project (or complex of buildings) must include the enhancement or construction of adjacent Designated Open Space in the project scope of the new construction size listed below (this may be part of a larger open space):


(b) This standard is intended to provide guidance for the minimum Designated Open Space to be enhanced or constructed. It is not intended to limit the amount of additional quality open spaces that will occur during the course of development. At the discretion of the Campus Planning Committee, required construction or enhancements may occur in adjacent Design Areas.

(c) Additionally, in Design Areas where 25 percent of the available uncovered land is already established as a Designated Open Space and improvements are not required, the Campus Planning Committee shall recommend where additional open space should be built or enhanced in an adjacent Design Area.

Policy regarding snow and ice: The UO's strategy for ice is to use sand whenever possible and only use environmentally friendly ice-melt as a last resort. Snow removal is done with utility vehicles brushes and blades to clear walks for people to get into buildings.

Website URL where information about the institution’s sustainable landscape management program is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:
Data source(s) and notes about the submission:
The website URL where information about the institution’s sustainable landscape management programs and practices is available, see campus plan principle 2 which deals with outdoor planning, frequently quoted above: https://cpfm.uoregon.edu/campus-plan

Please also see the campus plan principle 11, patters, frequently quoted above.

The 615 acres includes all satellite campuses such as OIMB, Pine Mountain, White Stag and the Shire. These satellite campuses have very little grounds management and are primarily wilderness spaces (with the exception of White Stag, which accounts for the smallest portion of the overall extra acreage).

The website URL where information about the institution’s sustainable landscape management programs and practices is available, see campus plan principle 2 which deals with outdoor planning, frequently quoted above: https://cpfm.uoregon.edu/campus-plan

Please also see the campus plan principle 11, patters, frequently quoted above.

The 615 acres includes all satellite campuses such as OIMB, Pine Mountain, White Stag and the Shire. These satellite campuses have very little grounds management and are primarily wilderness spaces (with the exception of White Stag, which accounts for the smallest portion of the overall extra acreage).

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution or simply email your inquiry to stars@aashe.org.