Gerdo P Aquino

Co-CEO, Principal

“With urban densities on the rise, cities are poised to exemplify greatness or self-destruction. My projects in these cities seek to mediate the extremes and bring a sense of stability to the disparate communities and districts that make them livable.”

Gerdo Aquino, FASLA, is the firmwide Co-CEO of SWA, an award-winning global practice operating on the leading edge of landscape architecture, urban design and planning. Gerdo is a big thinker, designer, author, and educator based in Los Angeles and is known for his research interests in reimagining the public realm as a means to improve quality of life within the densifying urban fabric of our cities and towns. Issues of urban ecology, resiliency, mobility, air and water quality, programming and access to open space frames much of his work and serves as the foundation of public lectures around the world.

Gerdo co-authored the award-winning research publication Landscape Infrastructure: Case Studies by SWA. Recent work includes a planning study to cap over a section of freeway in downtown Los Angeles; Milton Street Park, a linear levee park in Los Angeles; design and resiliency planning for a section of the Sava River Waterfront in Belgrade, Serbia; community outreach and design for a new central park in Glendale and a main plaza in Culver City, both in Southern California.

Gerdo is a licensed landscape architect in 8 states, holds a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Florida and earned his Master’s Degree in Landscape Architecture for the Harvard University Graduate School of Design. He is also an adjunct associate professor at the University of Southern California, where he has taught graduate level design studio for over 10 years.


Master of Landscape Architecture from Harvard University Graduate School of Design

Bachelor of Science in Landscape Architecture from the University of Florida


Board Member, The Cultural Landscape Foundation (TCLF), 501(c)3 non-profit

Fellow, American Society of Landscape Architects

Associate Member, American Institute of Architects (AIA), Los Angeles Chapter

Member, Urban Land Institute

Member, CEO Roundtable

Advisor, SOMA Pilipinas, San Francisco Cultural Heritage District


Architect’s Newspaper Best of Design Award; Culver Steps (2019)

ULI Urban Open Space Award – Community Impact; Ricardo Lara Linear Park (2018)

ASLA Southern California Chapter Honor Award, Ricardo Lara Linear Park (2018)

Los Angeles Business Council (LABC) Under Construction Award, The Culver Steps (2018)

University of Florida, Distinguished Alumnus Award (2017)

AIA Los Angeles, Residential Design Award, Crest Apartments (2017)

AIA CA Council, Merit Award, Crest Apartments (2017)

AIA Los Angeles, Merit Award, Samsung American HQ (2016)

ASLA Southern California Chapter Merit Award, Milton Street Park (2016)

ASLA Southern California Chapter Merit Award, Oxnard Green Alleys Plan (2016)

APA Award of Merit for Planning Best Practices, West Hollywood West Overlay District and Design Guidelines (2015)

ASLA Southern California Chapter Merit Award, LAVC Urban Forest Master Plan (2014)

ASLA Southern California Chapter Merit Award, Landscape Infrastructure: Essays and Case Studies (2012)

ASLA Southern California Chapter Award of Excellence, Gubei Gold Street (2012)

ASLA Honor Award, Gubei Gold Street (2012)

Arbor Day Foundation – Tree Campus USA, LAVC Urban Forest Master Plan, Valley Glen, California (2012)

Westside Urban Forum, Merit Award, Milton Street Park (2011)

ULI Finalist for Award for Excellence: Gubei Gold Street (2011)

Ideal Space Book, Best Open Space in China, Gubei Gold Street (2010)

ASLA Honor Award, Zobon City Sculpture Garden (2009)