Chris Mertl 2Mr. Mertl is a Landscape Architect with a strong background in the design of Alaskan coastal communities and environmental solutions for the region. He is the principal of the Southeast office of Corvus Design in Juneau. The basis of his work is through the development of context sensitive designs that are appropriate for the project and the community. His creativity and understanding of our Alaskan qualities allow him to develop solutions that meet the needs of the clients and users, and creates appropriate and meaningful landscapes. Mr. Mertl’s designs are based on a thorough understanding of coastal Alaska’s environment, its people, history, and culture.

Mr. Mertl’s experience has been almost exclusively with coastal communities, their landscapes, its people and ecosystems. His work stretches from Ketchikan to Unalaska. He has assisted communities to revitalize their downtown and economy, found the balance for developing waterfront and cruiseship facilities while providing opportunities for residents, provided environmental determinations and obtained permits for difficult projects, and worked with Native artists in the development of cultural landscapes. His work includes environmental and site analysis, master planning, developing streetscapes, developing non-motorized transportation facilities, obtaining state and federal environmental permitting, design of recreation facilities, developing parks and open spaces, designing historic landscapes, and creating tourism and cruiseship facilities.

Mr. Mertl has lived in Southeast Alaska for nearly 20 years in both Juneau and Sitka and is fascinated by the coastal environment, its challenges, and the opportunities it presents. He enjoys working with ‘real working coastal’ residents and communities and finding simple and creative solutions to complex design problems. Mr. Mertl believes in encouraging and facilitating the opportunity for public involvement to ensure consensus and support of public projects. Wherever possible he tries to weave our culture and history into his designs. Mr. Mertl has served as project manager for large multi-disciplinary teams and enjoys working with other design and engineering professionals to develop cost effective, functional and meaningful landscapes.


  • Planning and design of coastal communities and their waterfronts
  • Community revitalization while enhancing the community’s heritage and culture
  • Designing pedestrian spaces including streetscapes, parks and cruiseship uplands
  • Environmental analysis, solutions, and permitting including wetlands, coastal management, and ecosystem restoration
  • >Recreation facilities including trails, shelters, recreation areas, and wilderness facilities
  • Working with local artists, historians, Native leaders, school children, and the general public during the design process


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“I am so fortunate to be a landscape architect in one of the most amazing places in Alaska. The communities, people, history, culture and landscapes in Southeast are dynamic and vibrant. Each day is a new challenge and provides constant interest and excitement for me. One day I will be working with school children in a remote community designing a park and play area; the next day I am in an executive meeting with the Governor’s staff dealing with historic landscapes; and then knee deep in mud in the wilds of the Tongass National Forest performing a wetlands delineation. My environment and the local culture and history provide a never ending source for my design inspiration. My personal time is spent with my family camping, fishing, and hiking; and when everyone has gone to bed I sneak out to play and officiate hockey in the winter.”