Landscape Architect & Specifier News

AUG 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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Page 53 of 149

Wavy walks, separated from the street by grass, replace the traditional straight sidewalks and meet pedestrian needs. The road widths were reduced to 28' wide without sacrificing safety due to the unobstructed field of view and lack of blind turns. Overall, the neighborhood was primarily designed to encourage pedestrian interaction and discourage using a car to go short distances. Additionally, the coved plan uses about 25% less pavement for streets than a conventional plan, thus lessening impervious surface area. Also, there are generous buffers between all existing wetlands and any manmade structure. In order to ensure emergency requirements were met, walkways between coves were built to width and strength standards to handle a fire engine. By doing this, these walks provide both pedestrian and emergency connections between the coves. Oversized Cul-De-Sacs The cul-de-sac at the southwest corner of the neighborhood is oversized and includes deeper-than- standard home setbacks. Oversizing in this manner increases the geometric efficiency over a standard cul-de-sac, by accommodating more premium homes along the frontage, without altering overall density. Resultantly, front yard area and distances between neighbors is increased, as lots are no longer tight pie shapes. Normally, a standard cul-de-sac forms a sea of asphalt whose only rationale is the radius of a fire engine turning radius. In contrast, the over-sized one provides storm water retention, accommodates snow removal and includes a landscaped safe recreation area for residents in the center. Thru-walks ensure pedestrian connectivity not otherwise available with the dead-end cul-de-sac concept. They are implemented where needed, in order to connect cu-de-sacs to the rest of the neighborhood for walking and biking. Pedestrian Connectivity Walks are set in public access easements as they expand outside the right-of-way. If the city allows, they can be used to provide more space for utilities. The design of these walkways allow greater space for street trees, separate pedestrian and vehicular traffic and allow crosswalks away from intersections, which permit better sight distances and add to safety. A key feature is the walkability and potential created for social interactions. All homes have a social front porch and since the openness is more in the front than rear, the actual use of the porch will be more than in a traditional design. The walk system is specifically designed to encourage neighbor- to-neighbor interaction and keep pedestrians and vehicles far apart. How the Project Maximizes Success This was the first coved neighborhood to use fourth generation coving techniques where the homes and streets form completely different patterns. The results being that views are seen through blocks without building extra streets or sacrificing density. One of the challenges was that an existing coved neighborhood in Otsego had been altered during engineering to no longer connect pedestrians well or provide a sense of scale. As a result the city did not initially support additional coving projects. However, after the city council was given a list of unaltered coved neighborhoods to visit (which they did), the city staff and their consultants fully supported the Remington Coves design. Above: Inside this cove of homes, but still visible from the street, is a 0.9 acre central park, which connects to the rest of the site via walkways. It includes two playgrounds, one for smaller children and one for bigger kids, and is surrounded by four conveniently placed benches. Right: A roundabout dissipates traffic before entering the longer cul- de-sacs. Throughout the site, three-way intersections replace 4-ways, enabling fewer stops and reducing potential conflict points. 54 Landscape Architect and Specifier News

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