A Sustainable Landscape for The Paddocks

One of the things that IHCDA wanted to see in our RHTC application for The Paddocks Apartments was a Sustainable Landscape Plan. We chose to meet NGBS Silver status for this project.

To help us with this, we contacted Chris Kline, Sustainability Manager, at Cardno. I have personally worked with Chris and Cardno in the past on various projects through my association with the Lake Maxinkuckee Environmental Fund. Chris brought in Christine Dittmar as the project manager. We had several conversations regarding our goals and preferences including a couple of site visits and several plan reiterations. The current version is what you see below.

Draft Sustainable Landscape Plan as of 5-1-20

The key is a bit hard to read at this scale, so briefly: Green is standard lawn turf. Dark green is a low-mow fescue similar to what you would find in the rough of a golf course. The orange area is a prairie buffer between The Paddocks and the adjacent property. The pink is a detention pond planted as a pollinator garden with native wild flower plants that will have rotating blooms. The dark purple at the top is another detention pond which will have a variety of native plantings that can tolerate the fluctuation of water associated with the pond.

The goal was to have the best of both worlds here. Because this complex is geared towards families, we wanted adequate areas of turf where children would have the opportunity to play. These areas of turf are also used to border the native, naturalized areas, thus giving them definition. In some of the transition areas, we have included fruit trees for interest. Signage will be included to explain to residents and passersby what they are seeing.

Along with the turf recreation areas, Cardno has included a natural playground area, a fire pit and a community garden. An area for a second community garden has been set aside if a second is warranted; otherwise it will remain another area of turf.

We asked Chris to include a presentation to the Culver Town Council which was made at the May 12th meeting via Microsoft Teams. Since this was an online presentation, We also requested that it be recorded to be shared. The presentation to the Council was abbreviated in order to be cognizant of their time, but the long version was recorded here:

It will be interesting to see this come to fruition. We expect the majority of this landscape to be in place yet this year as the site work wraps up. The first units should be available for rent sometime late this summer.

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