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Announcing the Retirement of Kurt Carlson, Senior Principal Landscape Architect and the Next Generation of Principal Leadership

After nearly 40 years as part of the KTUA family, Kurt Carlson, Senior Principal of the Landscape Architecture Department, has announced his retirement. Kurt has had the privilege of working with many clients and consultants since 1979, as well as very hardworking, talented and devoted staff. He is proud of the team that he managed, trained and mentored throughout the years, watching them grow into creative designers, effective project managers and highly motivated leaders. He is confident that under the new principal leadership, Landscape Architects Brooke Whalen and Chris Langdon will continue the KTUA legacy of success for the next generation.

Kurt will miss coming to work every day, seeing smiling faces and being a part of the KTUA family and culture. He will cherish the memories forever and is looking forward to starting a new chapter in his life. Kurt wants to “personally thank each and every one of you for your support, friendship, many opportunities and experiences you have given me over the years.”

View some of the many successful projects Kurt was involved in over the years.

He plans to spend more time with his wife, daughter and granddaughter, travel more, enjoy life and stress less (maybe a few more rounds of golf too).


The Next Generation of Principal Leadership: Brooke Whalen, Chris Langdon, and Joe Punsalan Named Principals

KTUA Planning and Landscape Architecture announces that studio leaders Brooke Whalen, Chris Langdon, and Joe Punsalan have joined KTUA’s senior leadership as principals. As KTUA celebrates their milestone 50th anniversary this year, Brooke, Chris, and Joe bring their passion for design, planning, and service excellence to clients while continuing to mentor the professional development of staff and playing key roles in the continued success of the firm.

Brooke Whalen, Principal

Since joining KTUA in 2002, Brooke’s passion is creating memorable places with an emphasis on sustainability, identity, pride, and opportunities for social activation.  Brooke has been an influential force in projects such as Paseo de Colachis at the University of San Diego, The Fairmont Grand Del Mar, and several projects currently in progress at Southwestern College. On the weekends, Brooke can be found in the local mountains hiking long distances, skiing, biking, or traveling with her husband Matt.

With the help of the KTUA Team: Brooke has been an influential force in projects such as Paseo de Colachis at the University of San Diego, The Fairmont Grand Del Mar, and several projects currently in progress at Southwestern College.

Chris Langdon, Principal

Chris’ leadership is grounded with 27 years of experience in Southern California. His experience on park and recreation projects is fueled by his love for creating public spaces that support active living and connect people with their environment. Chris has been instrumental in the mentorship and professional development of junior staff. Chris is active in his community of La Mesa, sitting on the Design Review Board, and enjoys adventuring in his free time with his two daughters, Camryn and Macie.

With the help of the KTUA Team: Chris has played a significant role in the success of the Chula Vista Bayfront Parks Improvement Plans and Chula Vista Bayfront Design Guidelines. Additionally, Chris lead the design effort for the Manchester Pacific Gateway Navy Administration Building and continues to lead multiple park design efforts for KTUA.

Joe Punsalan, Principal

Joe is leading KTUA’s transportation planning services. His career has been evolving at KTUA since 1998 and his passion lies in developing collaborative planning and design solutions that provide communities with activated, safe, and engaging active transportation infrastructure. In addition to his project leadership, Joe has been committed to advancing KTUA’s community engagement and GIS processes, which have been instrumental to KTUA’s success. Joe has also been involved in the Mira Mesa community by serving on the Planning Group and volunteering at Mira Mesa High School where his son is a member of the marching band. Joe is an avid cyclist and backpacker and enjoys traveling with his family.

With the help of the KTUA Team: Joe has been responsible for the success of dozens of active transportation and complete streets projects across Central and Southern California from Atascadero’s Downtown Traffic Calming Plan to three Santa Ana Complete Streets and Active Transportation projects.