Located within walking distance of the Forest Hills T-station, MetroMark at Forest Hills is a Transit Oriented Development (TOD) of approximately 280 new residential units. Offshoots completed the schematic landscape design for a full complement of resident landscape amenities includes shared roof gardens, a sun deck, a retail café space and a redesigned pedestrian streetscape. The landscape at MetroMark was designed to minimize garden maintenance and water requirements. This results in a direct reduction of CO2 emissions from mowing and landscape maintenance equipment and less demand on potable water supplies. The landscape is designed to return more resources (such as habitat enhancement, stormwater cleansing and passive cooling) than it consumes.
Landscape strategies to minimize maintenance and water requirements include the following:
- Roof deck landscapes planted with xeriscape (low water use) hardy plants. This modified green roof system helps evaporate storm water and insulates the parking garage below. By covering the garage with planting area, it also mitigates potential heat generated from roof tops.
- Lawn areas were kept to a minimum. The only lawn that will require regular mowing and irrigation is a small 2,000 square foot area in the rear northwest corner of the property used as an amenity by residents.
- All other plantings on the site, including the trees and shrubs along the street-side of the building are low-water use plant materials, and are hardy to this area. Flowering perennial plants, which tend to require more maintenance than trees and shrubs, are minimally used in the planting design.
- The project connects to neighborhood recreation paths and has more bike parking spaces than automobile parking spots.
Forest Hills, Jamaica Plain, Boston, MA
Client: John M. Corcoran and Co.
Architect: Utile, Inc. (Architecture and Renderings Created by Utile, Inc.)
Development Consultant: Fort Point Associates, Inc.
Traffic Consultant: Howard/Stein-Hudson, Inc.
Engineer: W. Moore Associates
Landscape Architecture Construction Documents: The Cecil Group