Matthew and Sandra have over 20 years of combined experience in landscape architectural and planning practice. While both have deep Atlantic Canadian roots, they have each lived and worked in other cities across Canada and the North-eastern United States. Their project experience spans Toronto, Boston, New England, and more recently Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, and Newfoundland and Labrador. Their body of work includes a diverse cross-section of project types encompassing public parks, trails, campus master plans, community master plans, institutional and residential landscapes.
Through their experience, Matthew and Sandra have learned the importance of partnering with the right clients on the right kinds of projects to ensure that projects respect local natural and cultural ecologies. They value communication as being key to successful project delivery, and have a proven track record of leading large multi-disciplinary teams to see projects to fruition. Matthew and Sandra carry distinct but complementary skillsets, and collaborate closely as a team on all projects within the office in order to take full advantage of their collective range of expertise.
Matthew Austin John Brown
Matthew is a proud Newfoundlander with an unwavering attachment to the Atlantic Coast. His connection to the east coast is evident through his academic research and focus on the capacity of landscape and ecology to act as a catalyst in economic diversification and rural regeneration. Matthew holds degrees in Urban Planning from the University of Waterloo, a Master of Landscape Architecture from the University of Toronto, and a Master of Design Studies in Urbanism, Landscape, and Ecology from the Harvard Graduate School of Design with distinction. Professionally, Matthew spent the first seven years of practice in Boston working as an Associate with the award-winning landscape firm, Stimson Associates, before returning to Atlantic Canada to practice Landscape Architecture with Ekistics in 2017. Matthew is a designer with the unique ability to develop a comprehensive understanding of a project both in site and situation, and to create a thoughtful design concept and narrative that guides a projects evolution through to implementation. He has managed a variety of high-profile projects around New England and in Atlantic Canada that include large institutional master plans, campus landscapes, urban parks, and private residential estates and gardens. As a highly outgoing individual, Matthew’s passion for design is complimented by his ability to communicate ideas and concepts to clients, stakeholders, and community groups, and effectively build consensus.
Sandra Anne Cooke
Though born and raised in Ontario, Sandra’s earliest memories and experiences of the Atlantic coastal landscape were shaped by regular childhood pilgrimages to Nova Scotia, the place of her family’s heritage. After studying business at the University of Western Ontario, Sandra earned an Honours Bachelor of Arts in Architectural Studies at the University of Toronto, followed by a Master of Landscape Architecture at the University of Toronto. Upon graduating, Sandra practiced as a landscape architect at the award-winning Toronto firm, Janet Rosenberg & Studio, followed by a role as Project Manager at Downsview Park, overseeing the transformation of the 300+ acre brownfield site into a public park in north Toronto. After ten years of practice in Ontario, Sandra relocated to Atlantic Canada in 2016 to work at Ekistics. As demonstrated through her portfolio of built projects, Sandra’s project management skills are paired with a refined and contemporary design sensibility, and she strives to provide the highest standard of service to her clients. While she has worked on projects of all scales, Sandra's past work has been focused on mid- to large-scaled public parks and urban spaces, which have included diverse programs ranging from trails, urban agriculture, and stormwater management strategies, to cultural heritage experiences and event spaces. Sandra is interested in the performative aspects of both public and private landscapes; enabling their contribution to the sustainability of the built environment as elements of green infrastructure in their own right.