Going for Green: Creekside Sports Park Awards
The realization of this park is a testament to the vision of staff at the Town of Los Gatos. In 2009 the site was an abandoned telecommunications corporation yard. Today, a beautiful green park sits in its place. The Town of Los Gatos purchased the parcel in 2009 to address active, unmet recreational needs of the community. That was just the beginning. Selecting a consultant, soliciting input from the community and developing plans that met stringent regulatory requirements followed. Today, a fabulous park lies nestled at the base of the Vasona Reservoir dam in what was a commercial wasteland. This award winning park includes: a synthetic turf soccer field, a restroom/concession building, picnic space, a 41-space parking lot and a small play area.
Creekside Sports Park’s creative and effective design solutions for storm water treatment were recognized when it received two awards! This project received the SCVURPPP (Santa Clara Valley Urban Runoff Pollution Prevention Program) award, as well as the APWA (American Public Works Association) Silicon Valley Project of the Year award.
Unlike other facilities where acreage is set aside to meet storm water treatment requirements, at Creekside these requirements were integrated into the overall design. The elegance of the design comes from its simplicity and the notion of treating the water where it falls on the site. This technique had the added benefit of making the project easily implementable. Surprisingly, in many instances, the stormwater treatment requirements were satisfied before structural requirements, proving that stormwater treatment did not significantly contribute to overall project costs.
Other ‘green’ measures included provisions for a future Electric Vehicle (EV) charging station and the use of recycled tire rubber for synthetic turf infill. By incorporation of synthetic turf the need for fertilizers and pesticides was eliminated and water and energy consumption were greatly reduced as compared to a conventional park.
With the elimination of the impervious (asphalt) pavement that previously covered the site and the introduction of infiltration and biofiltration treatment techniques, the quality of storm water leaving the site is vastly improved and the quantity reduced. Ten year storm water discharge estimates show a net reduction during a 10 year event from 4.0 to 1.3 cfs. There was no surprise here, given that after project completion the amount of impervious surface decreased by 90%! What was once unavailable and of no value to the community or the environment has now been transformed into one of the Towns most highly coveted facilities, benefiting both residents and the environment.
Dave Rubin, Project Manager & Mark Slichter, Principal