Three Projects Receive ASLA Design Awards

Landscape architecture applies art and science to the design of public spaces. Whether we’re creating a regional park or re-imagining a city street we strive to create places for people.

RDG recently received design recognition at the Nebraska/Dakotas Chapter American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) Conference in Sioux Falls, SD. for the following projects: The Thompson Park Master Plan, the Grand Forks Downtown Action Plan, and the Educare Flint.

Honor Award – Design Unbuilt:
Developing a master plan for Thompson Park, a 3.8-acre park in the heart of downtown Overland Park, Kansas was a collaborated effort led by RDG including City Staff, City Council, the Steering Committee, and citizens of Overland Park. Guiding principles were to appreciate the greenspace, become a definitive park destination, anticipate the future, and support the downtown. The selected design concept, includes restrooms and shelters, a central plaza and water feature, modern play equipment, an outdoor office space, open recreation space beneath a beautiful canopy of existing trees, and a performance stage with a signature canopy designed to emulate a paper airplane! Thompson Park is currently under construction.

Merit Award – Planning & Analysis:

The City of Grand Forks initiated the Downtown Action Plan following the Mayor’s Vibrancy Initiative, which focused on making downtown a greater destination for people to visit, work, and live.  The plan and process took a unique approach, which is still being realized, by focusing on creating a compendium of action plans that are tailored to specific audiences.  These compendiums include: (1) development strategies, which focuses on targeted redevelopment of certain sites and design guidelines; (2) streetscape, which focuses on designing and rebuilding Demers Avenue, and (3) parks, which focuses on completely redesigning the city’s signature downtown gathering space.  The streetscape is being implemented before the plan’s completion.

Honor Award – Design Built:

EDUCARE FLINT – Flint, Michigan
Educare Flint is the first early childhood education school built by the Educare network in Michigan. Highly skilled teaching staff and family support specialists connect children, parents, and community residents with needed services. Using integrated site design and architecture to support the concurrent delivery of both childcare and education, the center is a promising model for optimizing learning during the vital early years.

During the project’s visioning and programming phase, members of the Flint community challenged the school’s design to celebrate Flint’s accomplishments in innovation, technology, entrepreneurship, self-determination, and industry. There was a desire to celebrate the racial, economic, and cultural diversity of Flint while remaining sensitive to the neighborhood’s context and the City’s past.

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