Sean O’Malley Managing Principal
Sean O’Malley has over 30 years of experience in all aspects of the profession—including large-scale planning and construction. As an urban designer, planner, and landscape architect, he has implemented a unique approach to the design of cities, drawing upon the strength of site and utilizing natural structures as a framework for development. He is interested in what connects us—the places we have in common in our cities, streets, infrastructures, plazas and parks. He has created environments primarily in the U.S., Europe, and Asia.
Mr. O’Malley’s design interests are rooted in environmental infrastructure, and in the integration of the natural structures of a site with its development potential, blurring the distinction between landscape and architecture.
Highlights with SWA include leading the planning and design of Shunde New City, in China, a project which has involved numerous waterfront development plans incorporating transportation, land use, and urban design strategies; multiple phased residential and commercial mixed-use development projects for the Irvine Community Development and Mission Viejo Companies in Southern California; and numerous parks and open-space planning and design concepts highlighting topography and recreation in dense urban environments.
EducationMaster of Landscape Architecture in Urban Design from Harvard University Graduate School of Design, with distinction; Bachelor of Science in Landscape Architecture, California State Polytechnic University Pomona, with distinction. Recipient - Urban Design Award, Harvard University.
Design philosophy“The city is the ultimate expression of man; we must understand what the land can tell us, so that we can ensure the survival of our natural systems and civilization itself.”
AffiliationsFull Member, American Society of Landscape Architects
Member, Partnership for Sustainable Communities
Full Member, Urban Land Institute
ULI Global Exchange Council Member
BIA Member, Building Industry Association of Southern California, Inc.
Recognition2016, December - A Community of Ecosystem Services (ACES 2016) Panel Speaker, in Florida
2016, October - Waterfront Center 29th Annual Conference, Award Recipient - River Forest Island, in Washington DC
2016, September – 9 International Biennial of Landscape Architecture, Presenter, in Spain
2016, February - Norwegian University of Life Sciences, Lecturer, in Norway
2016 - Caltrans Excellence in Transportation Award, ARTIC
2016 ASLA Southern California Chapter Merit Award, Changsha Tongxi Waterway
2016 ASLA Southern California Chapter Honor Award, Greening Plan for Inglewood & Lennox
2016 - ASLA Southern California Chapter Honor Award, Changsha Lianjiang Park
2015, October – The Global Association for Corporate Real Estate (CoreNet Global), Speaker, in Los Angeles
2015, October - ULI Global Exchange Council (GEC) Presenter, in San Francisco
2015, August - Sustainable Cities Design Academy (SCDA), Presenter, in Washington DC
2015, May - LID Sponge City Symposium, Speaker, in China
2015 - ULI Urban Open Space Award, Finalist, Nanhai Citizen's Plaza and Thousand Lantern Park
2015 - China 2015 Real Estate Design Awards (READesign), Finalist, Changsha Baxizhou Island
2014 - ASLA Southern California Chapter Merit Award, Changsha Baxizhou Island
2015 - APA-LA Award of Merit for Best Planning Practices, West Hollywood Design Guidelines
2014 – U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) Eco City Award, ARTIC
2014 - ASLA Southern California Chapter Merit Award, Shunde Guipan Waterfront
2013, October - Solar Decathlon Power Ideas Seminar, Keynote Lecture “Sustainable Urban Futures”, Irvine
2013 - ASLA Honor Award, Changsha Liuyang River Waterfront
2012, October - ULI Fall Meeting and Urban Land Expo – Speaker “Engaging Mixed-Use Development through Open Space”, Denver
2012 - Conde Nast Traveler #1 Spa in Mexico and Central America, Capella Ixtapa Resort
2011 – National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) Gold Award for On-the-Boards Community of the Year, Bishops Bay
2010 - Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) Recognition Award for Sustained Leadership, ARTIC