Project Information : 95 North Vulcan Avenue, Encinitas, CA
Client : Schmidt Design Group
Awards : 2004 Concrete Pavement Award, Decorative and Durable Designs 1st place in specialty, 2004 Cornerstone Award, 2004 ACI Innovative Use of Concrete
Cottonwood Creek Park is a new 8.5-acre park found in the busy intersection of Encinitas Boulevard and Vulcan. Notable because what once was an unsightly storage area for sanitation district equipment, it is now as Landscape Architect Glenn Schmidt describes it: “an oasis from the urban world.” Footsteps from City Hall, Moonlight beach, the Business District and the Coaster Station, it was created as a “place to come and connect with nature.”
The park features a restored or “daylighted” creek, a gazebo, children’s playground, two tennis courts, two basketball courts, 3 circular observation decks, and a veteran’s memorial.
Another feature of the park is the pavement itself. From the parking lot, to meandering sidewalks that surround the playground and basketball courts, integrally colored porous paving is found throughout the park. T.B. Penick & Sons, Inc.’s poured-in-place STF Porous Paving was chosen for its numerous environmental benefits. Porous concrete paving has been accepted by the EPA as an alternative to other storm water pollution prevention BMPs such as grassy swales and drain invert filtration systems and is eligible for LEED credits from the U.S. Green Building Council.
Porous concrete’s lower density of material reduces heat storage capacity while the open void structure allows cooler earth temperatures from below to cool the pavement. These factors allow the porous pavement systems to approach ground cover in heat absorbing and storage capacity. And because porous pavements allow storm water to seep into the ground through the pavement, surface ponding is eliminated, vegetation is watered, reducing the need for irrigation; the ground water is recharged, water resources are preserved, storm water run-off is reduced, and overall store water run-off quality is improved. With all the aforementioned benefits, STF Porous Paving also provides the durability of a concrete surface and minimizes the need for storm water infrastructures.
STF’s ability to retain storm water, while improving water quality and enhancing tree and vegetation growth, makes this material and the new park a very exciting example of green and sustainable building practice, or as the City of Encinitas Mayor, Maggie Houlihan, calls it “smart growth.”