The initial pilot project has been selected to take place at Rabanus Park, which is located next to the YMCA at 4315 18th Avenue SW. Rabanus Park currently consists of park facilities adjacent to an 18-acre grassy area used for water retention.
History of Rabanus Park
Rabanus Park has existed as public land owned and managed by The Fargo Park District for about 18 years. In 1994 plans went underway to develop the park, which included the resettling of Rabanus Barn from its original location on 13th Avenue and 45th Street to a new foundation on 18th Ave S. Carl Rabanus, for whom the park is named, owned all of this land at one time. He wanted something to remain from the farm as the rest of it was being developed into parts of the City of Fargo. The barn was moved to this site as a reminder of its heritage.
Rabanus Park in Context
Rabanus Park is nestled in between both residential and commercial property. One challenge of this design process will be to create a space that will address a wide variety of needs. From individuals looking to take a five minute walk during a break at work to families and large groups looking for an entire evening of recreation, this new space will be developed from the ideas that the community holds in common.
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A large majority of Rabanus Park has been set aside for use during times of heavy rainfall and flooding. A water detention basin, which is basically a large “dip” in the ground, provides a place for water to rest before it enters the storm water drainage system. This protects the system from overflowing by allowing water to enter only when the system is stable.
The detention basin at Rabanus park is used as a temporary water storage site after heavy rainfalls.
Rabanus Park, just like any other place, is filled with sights, sounds, textures, and even smells that are unique to its location. All of these perceptions need to be taken into account when designing the new space. For example, the noise from cars passing by on 42nd Street may affect the calm of a contemplative space. Other factors such as wind, direct sunlight, or even the texture and movement of grass, leaves, and water may inspire new design ideas for the project.
As the water within the basin rises and then lowers, it leaves behind a string of debris. Could this natural process be a source of inspiration for the design?
Site analysis diagrams help to bring many of the factors affecting a site together. This diagram shows traffic flow, wind direction, areas filled with water during heavy rainfall, and significant landmarks on the site.
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