Landscape Architect & Specifier News

JUL 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 Our design was presented to the commission, along with 14 other landscape architect and artist teams. Out of all the submissions, ours was chosen and we were hired to install our work. As project manager I supervised the installation of the work. Preserving the longstanding water oak tree in front of the library was important for us. Our design made sure that any construction that took place occurred away from the irrigation drip line for the tree. To ensure safety of the tree, a large area around the base of the tree was mulched and left alone; excluding any additions of hardscaping or plantings. For the hardscape portion of the project, a cobblestone-like paver that is 1-5/8" thick was used. These were installed over a 3" base of screenings and aggregate base covering (ABC) gravel. Under the ABC, we used 2" of permatill, which is a crushed, natural rock that provides permanent aeration for clay or compacted soils. Fabric was not installed since we wanted to encourage the tree roots to re-populate the permatill. Our development incorporated colorful, precast concrete benches that swirl and sweep through the space. Behind the benches are new landscapes that soften the surrounding hardscape with the inclusion of ground covering plants and a Sieryo Japanese Maple. A cobblestone pathway defines the outdoor room and intersecting pathways. Three colorful sculptures celebrate the intersection of these pathways, allowing visitors to experience the sculptures, not just as a static body of work but interactively by walking around and through them. Lush plantings populate the planters. Sieryu Japanese Maples create a lower level tree canopy under the oak, adding definition and intimacy to the space. Grasses, conifers flowering plants and ground covers add texture and color and break up the starkness of the hardscaping done in the area. What was once a small leftover parcel along Main Street has become a lively and colorful urban garden with an elegant hardscape. In the end, the project added to the finely woven fabric of this beautiful small college town by enhancing the public library for years to come. Above: To break up the amount of hardscaping that was done, a few mulched planters were incorporated into the design. The planter in the foreground holds eight Korean boxwoods (wintergreen). Two Yellow Ribbon Arborvitaes are in the raised planter on the left, backed by two Sieryu Japanese Maples in the corner. Top, Right: Lydia Musco, an artist and instructor at Davidoson College, designed these concrete sculptures that resemble stacks of colorful books. The overall design goal of the project was to reflect the theme of a children's book garden. Bottom, Right: Under the bench cap a stainless steel 'ribbon' includes quotes from famous children's books. Recently a benefactor paid for lighting the quotes, adding a nice dimension to the public space at night.

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