Starting Off the Week at Columbia Tech

This morning, Ben Johnson and Flora Yeh (pictured left) visited the Columbia Tech Nature Play Area now under construction in Vancouver, Washington. Great progress has been made since we last blogged about the project in August. Photos really don’t do it justice; the scale of this play area will surely make this a popular destination once complete. We’re thrilled to be working on this exciting project for PacTrust!

Khunamokwst Park

Cully’s newest park is scheduled to open early spring of 2015. The park’s diverse play areas have a distinctive blend of traditional and nature-based play with swings, prefabricated climbing boulders, a low flow water feature, and a universally accessible play structure. The playground structure was conceptualized to feel like a tree fort next to the signature Douglas Fir tree in the heart of the park. The park also includes a picnic shelter with an eco roof, 3000 square foot skatedot, and a large open lawn.


Basalt columns are integrated around the play structure stabilize the slopes and provide discoverable routes for scrambling. Rubber tiles will be installed on the embankment.



Mauricio Saldana carved a couple pieces of stone that were incorporated into the seat wall including these fiddleheads.


The stone wall will provide seating looking out towards the park and protect the roots around the signature Douglas Fir tree.


Large timbers were salvaged from the structure that was previously on the site and are being placed around the play area for seating.


The low flow water feature has small stone waterfalls, colored concrete channel, and basalt columns that match the other stone in the play area.


Roger Tilbury Memorial Park – Phase 1

After several years of planning and design, Phase-1 of Roger Tilbury Memorial Park has just received Substantial Completion. This neighborhood park in the Tualatin Hills Park and Recreation District (THPRD) is unique due to its large size, topography, and natural features. With neighborhood outreach and support, GreenWorks designed a plan for the entire site that provides much needed neighborhood access and connectivity through the park while protecting the wildlife habitat and a stream corridor. Phase-1 includes neighborhood access along the north side of the property, an accessible trail system, a small open lawn, traditional play area, nature play areas, and places to sit and enjoy the natural area. The nature play areas are inspired by the sites remnant Christmas tree farm and wildlife found on the site (Bobcats). Douglas Firs were felled from the remnant tree farm in order to create a healthier, diverse habitat, the accessible trail network, and places for nature play. A future Phase-2 will include an extension of the trail system and a 100’ long pedestrian bridge crossing a stream to connect to the neighborhood along the southern portion of the property.

For more coverage of the park, visit


The traditional playground and open lawn are located at the high point of the site and take advantage of the mature trees.


From the accessible trail looking up the hill prior to the log fort installation.


Logs were salvaged from the remnant Christmas tree farm and composed to make a unique fort structure for imaginative play and loose parts building area.

A shot of the fort from below courtesy of Belkor Logworks.

A shot of the fort from below courtesy of Belkor Logworks.


Kʰunamokwst Park Update

Construction at Kʰunamokwst Park is well over the half-way point and is starting to show off some the features. Much of the sidewalks are paved, and the skatedot and stonework in the water feature and play area are nearing completion. One of the main features of the park includes a stone carving of a Douglas Fir Cone which will be placed in the play area for kids to climb. Images below show progress on some of the main features.

The  Douglas Fir cone  in-progress by artist/stone carver Mauricio Saldana.

The Douglas Fir cone in-progress by artist/stone carver Mauricio Saldana.

Emerald Masonry is artfully arranged in the play area to provide a physical connection to the Columbia Gorge.

Emerald Masonry is artfully arranged in the play area to provide a physical connection to the Columbia Gorge.

Stonework in the water feature.

Stonework in the water feature.

Evergreen Skateparks has completed the perimeter walls and deck of the skatedot.

Evergreen Skateparks has completed the perimeter walls and deck of the skatedot.

Westmoreland Construction in Full Swing

Construction of the Westmoreland Nature Play Area is in full swing and will be completed next month. Cascadian Landscapers is the General Contractor and have done a wonderful job crafting the organically shaped water mound, creek channel, and sand play area.  The water mound is comprised of concrete cubes salvaged from the Crystal Springs Creek Restoration project. Adam Kuby, the project’s artist, along with Star Masonry recently installed log and boulder climbing features that are quite spectacular in their scale and composition. Oregon Log Homes fabricated the logs including cutting them to lengths and installing metal brackets for structural support.

The Westmoreland Nature Play Area is a pilot project for Portland Parks & Recreation’s Nature-Based Play Initiative. GreenWorks worked with PP&R, the public, and design team to create a unique setting that encourages creative play with the use of natural elements such as sand, water, boulders, and logs. GreenWorks developed a master plan and construction documents that will serve as a model for the region for developing a large scale nature playground targeting all ages and abilities.

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Kʰunamokwst Park Has Begun Construction

The next park in NE Portland has begun construction and has been officially named. Formerly known as the Werbin Property, the site will be called Kʰunamokwst Park (pronounced KAHN-ah-mockst). Kʰunamokwst is Chinook  wawa for “together”.  Chinook wawa is the language commonly used by the original people of this area. The groundbreaking ceremony took place on August 7th with Portland Parks Commissioner Amanda Fritz and Director Mike Abbate, joined by neighbors and project partners, to unveil the name and officially celebrate the beginning of construction of the first developed park in the Cully neighborhood. GreenWorks was the prime designer for the park starting from the Master Plan through construction. Features of the park include a combination of traditional and nature-based play, skatedot, public art, a modest picnic shelter with an eco-roof, walking paths, sustainable stormwater facilities, half-street improvements, native plantings, and an open lawn for neighborhood events and passive recreation.

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Cascade Avenue Under Construction in Sisters, Oregon

Construction of the Sisters Cascade Avenue (US 20) streetscape project is making progress. This project will increase walkability downtown while expressing the identity of Sisters.

Masonry work is moving forward on light pole pilasters and seat walls.

Masonry work is moving forward on light pole pilasters and seat walls.

New pedestrian poles yet to be installed will add vertical interest to the street.

Wes Shoger (GreenWorks, left) and Matt Arnold (SERA Architects, right) check out new pedestrian light poles 

Columns of aspens lining the street will provide shade and invoke the regional landscape.

Columnar aspens lining the street will provide shade and invoke the regional landscape character.

Crews lay out shrubs in the streets' expanded planters.

Crews lay out shrubs in the streets’ expanded planters.

Notches in curbs will allow stormwater to infiltrate vegetated facilities. Stormwater planters will infiltrate street runoff.

Notches in curbs will allow street runoff to infiltrate vegetated stormwater facilities. 

New awnings enhance building facades and provide protection from elements in the pedestrian environment.

New awnings enhance building facades and provide protection from elements in the pedestrian environment.

How many ice cream eaters can sit on these seatwalls once they're complete?

How many ice cream eaters can sit on these seatwalls once they’re complete?

SE Clay Green Street Project

Construction has begun on the SE Clay Street Green Street project! The Green Street spans from SE 2nd Avenue to SE 12th Avenue in Portland’s Central East-Side Industrial District. When completed, it will better connect pedestrians and bicyclists from east-side neighborhoods with the RiverEast Center Plaza (also a GreenWorks project) all the way to Portland’s popular Eastbank Esplanade. The redone renovated? revitalized? street will include storm water curb extensions, storm water planters with railroad rail check dams, and installations from local artist Linda Wysong. Custom seating will be incorporated into the storm water planter walls along the sidewalk edge, giving the corridor a more inviting, pedestrian-oriented feel.

From the beginning, this project posed planning challenges to all parties involved. Integrating stormwater management as well as pedestrian, bicycling and car travel with the project’s industrial freight access requirements resulted in unique designs for storm water curb extensions that respond to the larger turning radii required by some trucks that use the industrial district.

If you’d like to learn more about the SE Clay St Green Street project, click here!



AM Kennedy Park Construction Update

The weather is finally dry and AM Kennedy Park improvements are making progress. The Bridge and street improvements were installed during the winter/spring and now the park elements including the playground, picnic area, and sports field are taking shape. The park is located off of Beaverton Hillsdale HWY in Beaverton in the Tualatin Hills Parks and Recreation District (THPRD).

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Birdseye View of Oregon City’s “Jughandle Project” at Highway 213

This birdseye view of Oregon City’s Jughandle Project at Highway 213 shows the scale and context of this significant infrastructure project, which is currently under construction. GreenWorks prepared this graphic to illustrate our role in helping design a new landscape gateway into downtown Oregon City, a new roundabout with planting medians, green streets with stormwater facilities, street trees, bicycle lanes and a 6+ acre floodplain mitigation site.


Hosford Middle School Stormwater Project

Construction of a swale at Hosford Middle School began during the school’s winter break. It was designed by GreenWorks, PC and constructed by DeSantis Landscapes for the Lower Columbia Estuary Partnership’s stormwater and schools efforts. The design includes a curved concrete wall and other features that reduce the maintenance efforts needed by Portland Public Schools. The swale infiltrates runoff from approximately 4,600 square feet of the school’s roof and reduces the amount of runoff to the combined sewer system. The rerouted downspout creates a runoff powered water feature by directing water through a series of basalt columns before spilling into the swale. The project provides schoolyard learning opportunities for students, beautifies the school grounds, and supports local and regional efforts to improve the health of our rivers through onsite stormwater management. Students and Estuary Partnership educators will plant several hundred native plants in the swale in the next few weeks. Project partners include Hosford Middle School, the Estuary Partnership and Portland Public Schools. We would like to thank the City of Portland, East Multnomah Soil and Water Conservation District, and New Seasons Market for their generous support.



Nature Play Emerging at Silver Falls State Park


Last week construction was in full force at Silver Falls State Park with a crew working on the natural play area. The Bear, Cougar, and Bird themed discovery areas are being developed with unique large log components. The North Falls Nature Play Area was designed around a 1/4 mile loop trail with 15 animal themed areas. The setting and access to natural materials will make this a fantastic project!

A four foot diameter fir tree was felled, portioned into pieces, peeled and placed in the natural play area. Half of the tree will become a crawl through ‘cub den’. The other half will be hollowed out and become the ‘bear cave’. Tons of rocks were arranged into a scramble so kids can climb the rocks like a Cougar would. A group of volunteers braved the rain last weekend and planted hundreds of native trees and shrubs. The play areas instantly felt more alive. The bird blind was also set and the project is one step closer to completion. Look for a grand opening announcement in June 2013.


Engelman Park Nearing Completion

Wilsonville’s next Neighborhood Park, Engelman Park, is nearing completion. Site amenities include paths, native plantings, seating areas, and nature based playgrounds which are nestled amongst a framework of large specimen trees that include Douglas Fir, Engelmann Spruce, and a lone Red Oak.  JP Contractors will be completing the construction next month for the park which will provide a central open space for the Montebello neighborhood.

Construction Nearly Complete on the Lewis and Clark Festival Park

Kirby Nagelhout is wrapping up construction at The Lewis and Clark Festival Park in The Dalles. Construction of the $2.9 million park began in November 2011, and on Friday, July 13th, Mike Faha and Alex Perove performed a final walk-through, inspecting the irrigation and planting design. Cedar Landscape, Inc. is the licensed landscape contractor that installed the entire site’s irrigation, planting, and the concrete unit pavers in the main plaza.

Strong roof lines from the building, the trees, and expansive green lawn are some of the park elements that are visible from the freeway. These elements create an attractive buffer between I-84 and the railroad, and establish a green identity for the city of The Dalles. The grand opening of the park is tentatively scheduled for Thursday, September 6, 2012.

We would love for you to join us at the opening of the city’s newest community park!

The Lewis and Clark Festival Park is Under Construction!

Lewis and Clark Festival Park rendering by Craig Holmes

Located in The Dalles, Oregon, the festival area is positioned on a swath of land in between I-84 and the Union Pacific Railroad. Comparable in size to approximately three Portland city blocks, this design incorporates a parking lot, and a covered picnic pavilion, buttressed by restroom and picnic facilities. This focal point forms a strong presence to Union Street as well as a stage to the “great” lawn in which events could be held. A public art feature is proposed to be located on axis with Court Street. All of these elements combined, help to establish a strong connection with the historic downtown to the Columbia River, enhancing community identity, and encouraging economic development.

Preparing the site for the rough grading of the parking lot

Forming the walls for the restroom/ picnic pavilion

Wyeth Columbia River Treaty Fishing Access Site – Planting after 1 Year

Plants have been in the ground at the Wyeth site for nearly one year now and are thriving, as the comparison photos showing the condition at time of planting and a year later attest to. The Wyeth project is now complete having met requirements for a one year plant establishment period. To find out more about this project, please use the links provided below for past articles about this project.


Photo taken January 2011, after plant and seed installation

Photo taken end of October 2011

Cape Horn Trail Pedestrian Tunnels

Stone work construction is nearly complete on the facades of two pedestrian tunnels currently under construction on Highway 14 in the Columbia Gorge. For additional information about this project, please go to



Pictured in photo are Nels Homola, the project stone mason with Rotschy Construction and Danae Davison with GreenWorks.


Construction of Cape Horn Trail Pedestrian Tunnel Improvements

Construction is underway on two pedestrian tunnels to improve safety for users of the eight mile Cape Horn Trail, which currently crosses heavily traveled State Route 14 twenty-six miles east of Vancouver, WA(Mile post 24.8 and 26.5). The Cape Horn Trail is a popular trail for its spectacular views of the Columbia River Gorge. GreenWorks, working with Wallis Engineering, provided the design for the stone facing of the tunnel facades. The tunnel facades use local quarried basalt stone and have been designed to fit with other historic examples of stone masonry within the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area. To quote the Washington Trails Association, ‘The Cape Horn Trail is about to become one of the prized jewels of the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area.’

Nels Homola of Custom Masonry, Inc.

This WSDOT project was made possible by funding provided by Western Federal Lands Highway Division. Other construction related to the project will improve safety on SR14 in this area by straightening curves and adding turning lanes. The General contractor for the project is Rotschy, Inc and stone masonry work is being provided by Custom Masonry, Inc.

To learn more about the project, please visit the following websites:

Chambers Creek WWTP Site Perimeter Improvements Under Construction

Construction has begun on the first phase of a 30-year, five-phase expansion of the Chambers Creek Regional Wastewater Treatment Plant (WWTP), located in University Place, WA on a former quarry site on the Puget Sound. The WWTP expansion is necessary to protect the health of the Sound and surrounding environment by upgrading treatment facilities and providing additional capacity that will meet the needs associated with future economic growth in the region.

The first phase consists of 33 acres of site perimeter improvements, and includes a 200′-wide vegetated landscape buffer that extends around the majority of the plant perimeter. This buffer will provide a visual and physical screen to the plant as well as valuable habitat for a variety of native fawna. The north perimeter buffer will also accommodate approximately 6 acres of stormwater infiltration basins and swales that will treat all impervious surfaces throughout existing and future expansion areas of the WWTP.  Additionally, new pedestrian trails will be constructed along the east perimeter buffer to connect existing trail networks adjacent to the WWTP site.

The photo below is a panorama of the site grading for the north perimeter buffer, which includes the stormwater infiltration basins as well as a new reclaimed water basin.  This basin will hold post-process water that will be used to irrigate the entire Chambers Bay Properties, which also include public parks adjacent to the WWTP as well as the award-winning Chambers Bay Golf Course to the north.

Click the image to enlarge.