The Lloyd Street schoolyard, like many urban playgrounds, was largely covered with asphalt pavement. Conservation Design Forum helped heal the broken bond between students and nature through creation of an environmental learning laboratory. The pavement was removed in an area measuring 1/3 acre - about 15% of the paved schoolyard - and replaced with a rain garden. An outdoor classroom rises out of the rain garden with a small dry stack edge wall using blocks of reclaimed concrete pavement. Two access paths flanked with the recycled concrete include poured in place concrete pavement. All students had the opportunity to participate in the installation process by leaving a hand imprint in the freshly poured concrete. This simple exercise fostered a level of ownership amongst the pupils, which contributes to the longevity and success of the rain garden.
location: Milwaukee, Wisconsin
client: Milwaukee Economic Dev. Corp., Milwaukee Public School District
completion: November 2008
Native Landscape Systems
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