We are proud to highlight this month’s featured project, Whitehall Road Regional Park Master Plan. Located in Centre County, near State College, this future regional park is designed with sustainability and accessibility in mind. The final master plan reflects the following project goals:
Environment – Conserve and enhance natural conditions and features.
Community – Respond to conditions and needs of adjacent and regional community.
Program – Accommodate a logical mix and quantity of park uses.
Economics – Maximize relationship between cost and benefits to community.
Identity – Create a dignified and beautiful park space that improves over time.
The 100-acre park has to meet the growing demand for sports fields, while also accommodating those more interested in passive recreation such as walking, picnicking, and gardening. The master plan includes soccer fields, softball and baseball fields, tennis courts, a football field, a lacrosse field, playgrounds, picnic shelters, walking trails, open space play, a dog park, and community gardens. The existing site is open with dramatic distant views. The park is organized to respond to these conditions by creating a rectilinear pattern of outdoor rooms that connect directly to the adjacent agricultural context. Proposed rows of trees extend the existing forest block to provide a pattern for the roads, walkways and athletic fields.
Proposed stormwater Best Management Practices (BMPs) include rain gardens, permeable paving, vegetated swales, infiltration trenches, vegetated buffer strips, green roofs, and cisterns to name a few. The key is to work with natural ecological processes instead of against them.