Tanya Kelley is a designer with thirty years of experience, including projects that have been recognized for design excellence from professional organizations and civic agencies. Her projects and articles have been featured in professional, local and national publications, including the New York Times.

She received a Bachelor of Science in Landscape Architecture from the City College of the City of New York and a Masters in Landscape Architecture from The Rhode Island School of Design and currently teaches in the Landscape Architecture Department at the University of Rhode Island.

She is active in planning and policy in Newport, Rhode Island where she is currently a member of the Washington Square Advisory Commission, The Newport Planning Board and Critical Area Review.

Tanya is the founder and Principal of PLACEstudio Landscape Design in Newport, RI where she is currently working on the Opera House Roof Garden, Mabel's Garden at The Norman Bird Sanctuary, and numerous residential projects. 

She frequently collaborates with Ron Henderson, FASLA of L+A Landscape Architecture where she has been project manager for planning and design projects in the United States and China - including the award-winning Master Plan for XiHaizi Model Ecological Park in Beijing, Anthracite Garden in Cambridge MA, Pawtucket Downtown Design Plan, Pawtucket, RI, City Walk and the Elmwood Avenue Enhancement Report in Providence, RI as well as the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston, MA. She is currently the Senior Project Manager for The Newport Spring Project which is designing the site of Newport's original town spring formerly Coffey's gas station.

Tanya was recently invited to lecture on 'Strategies for a Diverse and Vibrant Newport Harbor', at The University of Connecticut Sea Grant and she spoke about her work during Designxri, RI Design Week at the Newport Art Museum. In April 2016 Tanya was a guest lecturer at Roger Williams University, Art, Architecture and Historic Preservation School where she presented two lectures on planting strategies for architects; Native Plant Ecosystems and Trees. In January of 2015 she presented her research, Newport's Historic Beech Trees, Collection and Stewardship, to the Poetics of Plant Design Colloquium at the Harvard Graduate School of Design. 

Tanya lives in Newport with her dog Pepper and enjoys spending time with her three step-children Travis, Marcy, and Elliot. When not working, she likes to travel, write, and observe nature.



Kate Dana joined PLACEstudio in 2008 with a background in Landscape Design, Industrial Design and Graphic Design.  

Kate was previously affiliated with The Brooklyn Botanical Garden in New York where she developed graphic branding and marketing materials as well as outdoor signage systems for their 52 acre institution.

She received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Industrial Design from The Rhode Island School of Design and a Masters in Landscape Design from The Conway School of Landscape Design.

At PLACEstudio, Kate produces computer renderings, drawing sets and specifications for all our projects. She produced the Cultural Landscape Reports for the Norman Bird Sanctuary and Eisenhower Park among many other projects.

Kate has been an invited Critic and held workshops on computer graphics for Landscape Architecture students at the Boston Architectural College and the University of Rhode Island. She also helped coordinate Project One: Viewport, an outdoor sculpture exhibit in Newport, RI in 2010.

Kate lives in Newport with her boyfriend Sandy Nesbitt and their cat Shadrach III. She enjoys travel, growing food, and riding her bike around Newport.


“…….. Tanya's workplace in historic Newport, it is indeed a place of inspiration and imagination coupled with confidence and competence.” Peter K.


“My husband and I have worked with Tanya Kelley for over 20 years doing both interior and exterior design for our home. Tanya is very easy to work with as she has the ability to hear what the client wants and needs and respond accordingly. She has a beautiful aesthetic and we have always been extremely happy with the results of her wonderful designs.” Valerie M.


"I found Tanya creative, inspirational and able to envision what a mature garden might look like. She incorporated plants that I like, along with others I might not have considered. She was super to work with and very talented."  Barbara C.