Landscape Architecture is of paramount importance to this project, creating an integrated identity for the development. The landscape provides the necessary components of livability, human scale and sustainability, while aligning with the architectural features, and echoing its colors and materials. Throughout, the landscape enhances the pedestrians and resident experience, providing shade, seasonal color, and places to sit, relax and mingle for commuters, residents and neighbors alike.
The midblock pedestrian plaza is one such place. It gracefully navigates the transition from street level, up 15+ feet to transit level with stepped planters, seat walls, over-arching Flowering Japanese cherries, striations of colored plantings, and pedestrian lighting. It creates a serene place between the bustle of street retail and transit while providing a measure of privacy and an outlook to adjacent resident units.
The Gateway Plaza, by contrast, is in the middle of all the activity. Surrounded by retail and facing the entrance to the transit mall, this plaza includes benches, tables, chairs and seat walls that ring this circular shaped area. A large signature Elm tree anchors the center; while a circular row of pillar-like columnar trees formally mark both sides of the Park & Ride entrance.
At the mixed-use building, an internal courtyard of private and semi-private patios, sunning areas, gardens, outdoor hearths and communal gathering areas is provided, as is a roof terrace with BBQ, seasonal plantings and a green roof. This green roof contributes both to heat island effect reduction as well as stormwater attenuation.
The parking lot is planted as an orchard with large, shade trees that also work to reduce the heat island effect. These trees, along with other street trees, are contained within small planters that help mitigate and slow stormwater runoff. The pedestrian pathway along the parking structure is lined by trees and shrubs to soften the structure.
Which Green Certification Program is Right for You?
Daily Journal of Commerce
February 23, 2012