Central States ASLA Design Awards
Two RDG projects receive Merit Awards from the Central States Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA). Those projects recognized are: Central Moore Park in Moore, Oklahoma and The Iowa Riverfront Master Plan in Iowa City/Coralville, Iowa.
The City of Coralville retained RDG to develop a Master Plan for the Iowa River Riverfront, its associated tributaries through Coralville and the connection of the Riverfront to the Coralville Town Center. Beyond this Master Plan Area, we also provided analysis and recommendations related to how the Riverfront fit into the context of the Iowa City/Coralville metropolitan area and Johnson County as a whole. This plan addresses transportation, recreation, environmental and land use redevelopment opportunities.
To be both meaningful and beneficial to a project, we believe that public engagement should go beyond simple surveys and open houses. Leading us to create a public involvement plan that included the following techniques which resulted in informed public stakeholders who took ownership of the plan:
• Fourteen Community Action Team (CAT) Meetings that began with framework planning and continued with principle and goal-based master planning
• Two public open house meetings
• Field trips with CAT members to other riverfront communities
• A pontoon ride with CAT members along the Iowa River to engage the river from another perspective and field check the draft master plan
• “Lessons Learned” interviews with representatives of other riverfront communities with results shared at CAT meetings
• Public survey
• CAT survey regarding preliminary master plan concepts
The resulting Master Plan completed in 2011 is already producing results as approximately half of the proposed trail system and a bank stabilization project are already underway and safe connections to the larger community are being constructed.
The Central Moore Park Master Plan, recognized as a Merit award winner, is a long-range master plan for a 55-acre park located within the urban core of the City of Moore, Oklahoma. Developed to meet program expectations established by citizens include a community recreation center, outdoor aquatic center, amphitheater, farmers market, trails, and associated park amenities and utility infrastructure as part of the initial implementation phase. The design focuses on integrating the active recreation program elements and facilities with appropriate natural resource stewardship – including reestablishment of native prairie areas, and reconstruction of rainwater management processes that mimic an ecologically-based rainwater system.
Both of these projects are great examples of planning that connects people with their communities.