The Phil Hardberger Park design team orchestrated a drawing exercise as part of an on-going dialogue with the community about the site’s capacity for potential park uses.
Participants were organized into groups of six to eight and were provided with basemaps of the existing site. The basemaps delineated a set of baseline conditions intended to guide the exercise and provoke conversation between community members. Each group was asked to organize the site based on their newly acquired knowledge gained from the presentations of site analysis and potential park uses, as well as the three programmatic themes of renew, recreate and educate.
The multiple venues of community input, including city-wide meetings and comments posted on the website added up to informed criteria for the Master Plan proposal. Discussion points with the Parks and Recreation Department, the Mayor’s and City Manager’s offices, were based upon a careful inventory of all of the many forms of feedback from citizens across the City. All of these hopes and desires for the precious parcel of land became an integral part of the design team’s vision for Phil Hardberger Park.
In formulating the design responses that structure the Master Plan, every effort has been made to synthesize community input and integrate with the insight provided by the experienced staff at the Parks and Recreation Department, along with the continued support and the challenge by the Mayor to create a 21st century park for San Antonio. The goals of the Master Plan are outlined in the following design responses, organized by the categories of park elements and issues. Each program element has been considered in relation to the objective to establish the ratio of a predominantly native landscape with a balance of active park use areas.
Many of the components included in the design responses comprise the landscape framework of the Master Plan. An essential aspect of the design strategies that follow is the ability for compatible park elements to be tested for their fit within this framework. The selection criteria for park uses emphasizes the need for minimal impact on the preserved and restored native landscape. As part of the future phases of design development, the specifics of those program elements will continue to be studied and discussed with the community. Together with more knowledge about the site and the practicalities of constructing and maintaining a large park the more specific program components will evolve as Phil Hardberger Park becomes a reality.
| ‘NATURAL’ PARK || 75% OF PARK PRESERVED + RESTORED TO NATIVE TEXAS LANDSCAPE |
| EDUCATION / ENVIRONMENTAL CENTER || URBAN ECOLOGY CENTER, SALADO CREEK CLASSROOM + TRAILHEAD, HERITAGE HOMESTEAD |
| SUSTAINABLE PRACTICES || INNOVATIVE ‘GREEN’ TECHNOLOGIES INTEGRATED THROUGHOUT THE PARK |
| PASSIVE RECREATION || WOVEN THROUGHOUT THE PARK |
| ACTIVE RECREATION || LARGE AND SMALL OPEN AREAS FOR LOW IMPACT ACTIVITIES |
| ACCESS || CITY-WIDE CONNECTIONS TO NEIGHBORHOODS + PARK SYSTEM |
| SAFETY/MANAGEMENT || SECURITY AT PARK EDGES + INTERIOR |