Landscape Architect & Specifier News

JAN 2018

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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Continued from page 14 h a rd s c a p e s 16 Landscape Architect and Specifier News dictated by the load bearing capacity of the structure below. The shape of the raised planting beds was defined by pathways representing the desire lines for pedestrians crisscrossing the plaza. The paved surface is a pattern of 4" by 8" gray and white precast concrete pavers by Unilock. The pavers are set with a neoprene tack coat on top of a rolled bituminous setting bed, below which is a 2 ½" coarse aggregate bituminous layer above compacted graded gravel. Under that is a system of filter fabric, light filler, drainage stone, drainage board and waterproofing that was specified by the architect and sits directly on the roof of the underground parking garage. The largest areas of pavement are concentrated around the two head houses that connect the plaza to the parking garage. The city wanted plenty of unobstructed paving for future programmed activities, including farmer markets, musical entertainment and street performers. In response to vandalism in the downtown that had damaged site furniture, the seat walls around the raised planting areas feature a series of beveled and stepped granite blocks. The ups, downs and angles were created to discourage skateboarders who have damaged other amenities throughout the city where skate blocks had proven ineffective. Stepped blocks were also placed in front of the larger head house, where the roof supports angle out low to keep pedestrians from walking into the low overhang of the roof. Construction of the surrounding buildings is ongoing. When they are complete, Garage Park will be a focal point for the surrounding new development, providing space for programmed activities and informal gatherings. The new CitySquare area will be the heart of a revitalized vibrant downtown Worcester. Above: Precast concrete pavers (Unilock) in shades of gray and white make up the majority of the plaza, with the darker bands becoming denser towards the center of the area. Layered on top of the roof of the parking garage, from the bottom up, are waterproofing, drainage board and stone, light filler, filter fabric, compacted graded gravel, coarse aggregate, a rolled bituminous setting bed, and a neoprene tack coat, upon which the pavers sit. Top, Right: The planted areas were raised slightly to allow for an increased soil depth, which was limited by the underground parking garage. Though drought tolerant plants including bristleleaf sedge and sheep fescue were specified, an irrigation system was installed to assuage concerns that the shallow soil might dry out the growing environment. Bottom, Right: In an effort to deter skateboarders and vandals, the granite seatwalls were designed with ups, downs, angles, and a beveled edge. Dumor 93 series benches (visible in the leftmost photo) provide additional seating areas.

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