Landscape Architect & Specifier News

SEP 2017

LASN is a photographically oriented, professional journal featuring topics of concern and state-of-the-art projects designed or influenced by registered Landscape Architects.

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Right: Engineers installed a 20' span x 10.25' rise x 16' long precast modular bridge for the train in just one day. The bridge had to support the small train loading and accommodate the lighting conduits. The precast wing walls extended above the headwall to facilitate custom railing highlighting the park entrance and railroad crossing. Cultured stone for the wing walls and 'Torch' light fixtures were the finishing touches. A mural was painted on the ceiling with decorative artwork mounted to the interior of the arch and adjacent retaining walls. Top, Right: The twists and turns of the 12-panel Mobius (Landscape Structures) are a definite climbing challenge for kids. Right, Middle & Inset: The park offers a quarter scale wheel chair accessible C.P. Huntington train manufactured by Chance Rides ( www.chancerides.com ). The company, based in Wichita, also makes roller coasters and all manner of amusement rides. The train is modeled after one at the golden spike ceremony in Promontory Summit in 1869. The train runs along a 2,700-foot rail loop and passes through several tunnels. The sandstone tunnel behind the upper level of the waterfall exposes riders to a cooler microclimate of water, mist and shade. Right, Bottom: The Thunder Junction custom train depot is the 'Mesa' model from Classic Recreation Systems, Inc. It incorporates a ticket booth, loading platform and tower. The design is by architect Mark Goble. If you just missed the train, the corrugated roof offers a shady spot to wait and relax. 46 Landscape Architect and Specifier News The Thunder Junction project took approximately 3 and one half years to design and build and cost $5.5 million. The theme is "Dinosaurs in a Desert Oasis" and features a variety of universally accessible play equipment, a rumbling and erupting volcano with a Jurassic fort and slides, iconic dinosaur sculptures, an interactive water feature with a sculpted cave experience, climbing wall, sensory garden with musical instruments, wheelchair accessible train that travels along a looped rail line from a train depot, shade structures, restrooms and beautifully landscaped surroundings. The St. George city manager and leisure services director, both of whom have grandchildren with special needs, originally initiated the project. They spent many years working with special needs groups and recognized this was an underserved demographic in their community. This ambitious park was designed in-house by landscape architect's Jeff Peay and Mark Goble, along with park planner Van Phetsomphou, all of whom work for the St. George Park Planning Division. The city also worked with local engineers Phil Giles and Taylor Ricks and architect Bill Western to complete specific design plans. The city park planning staff met with the community and several special needs groups to introduce the design concept and get feedback to further develop the park and playground. The city landscape architects took the lead with project The Thunder Junction project took approximately 3 and one half years to design and build at a cost of $5.5 million.

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