ESA is pleased to announce that the Oregon Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) recently awarded the Minto-Brown Island Park Floodplain Restoration project with a 2013 Merit Award for Analysis and Planning. The award was presented to ESA on Friday, November 1st at the annual Design Awards Soiree held at the Multnomah Athletic Club Ballroom. The ASLA Oregon Design Awards program celebrates professional and student excellence by recognizing the firms, individuals, and agencies responsible for outstanding works of landscape architecture and environmental planning that promote an enhanced quality of life in Oregon and beyond.
In collaboration with the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) and the City of Salem, ESA was integral to the successful 166-acre floodplain habitat restoration project at Minto-Brown Island Park located along the Willamette River. ESA managed the project, led the restoration design, had a substantial role in shaping the public involvement program, led the bidding phase, and worked with the contractor throughout the construction and monitoring phases of this award-winning project.
Historically, portions of the park were leased for agricultural production including ryegrass, oats, green beans, and pumpkins. The historic agricultural use was popular with many park users for the open vistas it afforded and for attracting wildlife. Project designers solicited input from members of the community during a series of project open houses, and used their input to inform the restoration design. The final restoration design was accepted by community stakeholders and met NRCS Conservation Reserve Program standards.
The design awards jury was impressed with the scope of the project and the educational content presented in the public involvement materials prepared by the ESA team. The ESA project manager noted that “It was a challenging and deeply gratifying project in overcoming the initial misunderstandings about the proposed restoration and then seeing the success of the restoration and how well received the work has been by park users.”