Meet Curtis Riley, PLA, LEED AP, Project Landscape Architect and Planner

Author: Kristi Boon, PE Published: November 18, 2020

Where are you from and where do you live now?

I spent my youth in southern California, but I have lived in the beautiful Pacific Northwest for 20 years now, and I call Portland my home.

What do you do at MFA?

From conceptual site plan renderings to construction documentation, I work on a variety of large- and small-scale public and private projects, including urban planning and design, parks and trails, transportation, low-impact design, industrial development, and environmental restoration.

What’s rewarding about your job?

Much of the work we do at MFA positively impacts the people that live and work in the vibrant communities we serve. It is gratifying to be a part of the transformation process that helps establish the best use of available land while strengthening the relationship between people and the environment.

Why is what you do important?

Landscape architecture seeks to help preserve and enhance our natural surroundings. As our cities continue to grow and the world’s population increases, it is imperative to protect our natural environment while creating spaces that inspire healthy living and wellbeing.

What skills do you bring to your work?

At MFA, I combine my technical skills and knowledge in landscape and site design, planning, natural resource systems, landscape restoration, water quality, and project management to develop cost-effective and creative plans. From concept to completion, I rely on my understanding of the relationship between regulation, physical site characteristics, and development feasibility to generate sustainable solutions.

What do you like to do off the clock?

I enjoy spending time with my family, sea kayaking, paddle boarding, hiking, getting my hands dirty in the garden, listening to records, and traveling when I can.

If you were not a Landscape Architect, what would you be?

Water taxi driver in the Greek Islands, a kayak guide, or a taste tester at a tapas restaurant.

What’s on your bucket list?

  • Kayak from Portland to Astoria
  • See a concert at Red Rocks Amphitheatre in Colorado
  • Have a beer at Oktoberfest in Munich, Germany
  • Attend the Samba Parade in the Brazilian Carnival
  • Scuba dive in the Great Barrier Reef
  • Hike the Inca trail in Peru
  • Learn to sail

Learn more about Curtis