As a design & build firm, we advocate strenuously for the design function at CSG. Every project on this website began with a well-crafted design; attempting to create a functional, aesthetically pleasing urban garden without a comprehensive, thoughtful plan will end in frustration for everyone.

Our design process begins with a get-acquainted meeting between designer and client at the client’s home.  The broad parameters of the design scope are established at this meeting.  A proposal outlining our fee for developing design work is provided after this meeting; if our client wishes to proceed we pick up the design fee at a scheduled  date and work begins. Additionally, if a project budget – or range – has been identified, we want that to be part of our initial discussion as well.

The next meeting – where the design concepts are presented – takes place at our office at 1765 N. Elston Ave. in Chicago, just outside the downtown business area. Here, we provide samples and images of suggested materials, plants, structures, etc. which we’ve considered for the installation. Importantly, budget ranges are presented here in the form of line-item figures which we provide for each component of the design. The plan set goes home with our clients, who then provide us with final direction on the design and budget, and we begin the final steps to complete the plans.

The final meeting takes place at our client’s home, where we present the final design plan, specifications for all the materials, and a construction proposal covering all the components outlined in the design. This meeting concludes the design process. If our client wishes to proceed with construction, schedules and deposit payments are discussed at that time.

At CSG, we consider the designing and building of our gardens to be a collaborative effort between us and our client, and we welcome your comments and questions in that spirit.