The Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure awarded Envision Silver to the Virginia Beach Parks and Recreation’s Marshview Park Phase 1 project. The park is the second project in Virginia to earn an Envision sustainable infrastructure award.
The project will provide a 17.9-acre park with recreational amenities open to the public during the day in Virginia Beach. The park will include an 8-foot-wide paved trail, fenced-in dog parks, a multipurpose playing field, and two new parking lots. Future development plans within the park call for picnic shelters, benches, a playground, and a restroom facility. Additionally, the project scope plans for associated landscaping, aesthetics, stormwater management, and other infrastructure improvements.
There are almost six acres of wetlands on the property, which will remain largely undisturbed, allowing park users to enjoy the natural features of the land. The project will replace the current dirt path with an 8-foot-wide asphalt trail, which will meet American Disability Act standards and facilitate safe navigation for runners, walkers, cyclists, and others. The trail will also connect entrances on either side of the project so users can travel between neighborhoods safely and more efficiently. In addition, the separated, fenced-in dog parks will provide an area for canines without affecting the safety or comfort of other park users.
The project team specified that all materials required for this project, such as plants, aggregates, and soils, be locally sourced. The team also designed the site with minimal changes to grading, thus helping to balance the cut-and-fill ratio, which reduces the transportation and environmental impacts associated with taking excavated materials off-site.
The design team has implemented a range of measures to minimize impacts to existing and potential habitats on the site. Time-of-year tree clearing restrictions were initiated to protect the habitat of the endangered Northern Long-Eared Bat. Impacts to existing wetlands and forested areas on the site have also been minimized, and signage will be used to help protect wetland areas from park users’ disturbance and educate them about the important functions of wetlands.
Virginia Beach Parks and Recreation worked in close collaboration with Clark Nexsen, a national architecture and engineering firm, to design the Marshview Park Phase 1 project.
The ISI Envision rating system measures sustainable infrastructure projects in five categories: quality of life, leadership, natural world, resource allocation, and climate and risk. Learn more about Envision and ISI at sustainableinfrastructure.org.