Meramec State Park Playgrounds

DG2 Design collaborated closely with Missouri State Parks staff to design two new playgrounds at Meramec State Park: the Day Use Playground and a more intimate campground playground. Over the course of a year, the design process involved coordination with cultural resources to protect sensitive areas known for historical artifacts. The Day Use Playground features a bay of swings, a disk swing, a long seat wall for relaxation and observation, and a large play structure with multiple climbing points and a slide. Additionally, the park now offers extra parking, a wheelchair-accessible walkway, and an updated basketball court. The campground playground includes a smaller climbing structure with multiple slides, a viewing scope, and swings.

Atlas Public Schools Playground

St. Louis, MO

DG2 Design was tasked with designing a playground for Atlas Elementary, a new school in downtown St. Louis, as part of their commitment to preparing students for a lifetime of exploration. Atlas Public Schools aims to educate the whole child through rigorous academics and real-world experiences. The playground is designed to encourage imagination, physical challenges, and free play.

Unlike traditional playground concepts, the playground features Berliner spatial nets, which stimulate cognitive processes in children and encourage decision-making in a playful way. The design balances safety with opportunities for children to push their boundaries and learn through play.

Located under the cover of a previously covered parking lot, the playground offers various play options, including two DNA Towers with climbing features and a slide, a Tri climbing tower with a tube slide, and a three-dimensional chess board, all on an accessible artificial turf surface.

This playground, along with the renovation project to adaptively reuse a previously vacant building, will meet the evolving needs of the school as it grows over the next five years. The growth strategy includes adding a new grade each year until the school reaches 600 students in kindergarten through fifth grade.

Mitchell Park Master Plan

Kirkwood, MO

DG2 Design worked with the City of Kirkwood to update the Mitchell Park master plan.  Following the St. Louis County Municipal Parks Grant requirements and based on the community outreach efforts and stakeholder input, DG2 developed the following key goals and objectives for Mitchell Park improvements.

ADA Compliance: Proposed improvements and amenities will be designed to meet ADA requirements, ensuring equal access to recreational activities for all park users.

Park Drainage: Addressing drainage issues is a primary concern that must be resolved in coordination with other park improvements. Sculpting the natural grade and installing rain gardens will help redirect water flow away from active areas, preventing waterlogging.

Preserving Park Character: Community members express a strong desire to maintain the park’s overall character, including its central open lawn, lush canopy, and intimate atmosphere. A balance between active and passive engagement opportunities will be maintained.

Enhancing Play Opportunities: Parents and children want more opportunities for both formal and informal play. Integrating swings and landscape elements for climbing and skipping into the park design will cater to these desires. Additionally, a small-footprint mist element will be added to provide a fun way to cool off on warm days.

Landscape Improvements & Tree Canopy Preservation: Plantings that attract pollinators, showcase seasonality, and offer educational opportunities will be integrated into the park’s landscape design. A careful assessment of tree health will be conducted to ensure the long-term vitality of the park’s tree canopy. Declining trees will be replaced, while healthy ones will be preserved.

Preserving Central Open Space: The central open lawn, a popular area among park visitors, will be preserved and enhanced through improvements to grading and drainage, resulting in a more usable space throughout the year.

By addressing these goals and objectives, Mitchell Park will be transformed into a more inclusive, sustainable, and enjoyable recreational space for the community to enjoy.

4210 Duncan – Cortex Innovation Community

St. Louis, MO

The design of the nine-story, 316,000-sq.-ft office and lab building at 4210 Duncan was inspired by the site’s legacy
as a former metal manufacturer. It features a linear, metal facade and will become the largest building on the Cortex
campus upon completion. The flexible floor plan is designed to accommodate various space configurations and is techand
lab-ready. A hospitality lobby connects to the new Cortex Gateway Plaza, offering outdoor restaurant terraces,
event spaces, and work areas.

The building will be constructed on a surface parking lot, with significant street-level changes planned, including the
removal of a large concrete wall that kept the site level. Retail spaces will be included to enhance the district’s
development into a true neighborhood over time. All four sides of the building engage with the streetscape
and pedestrian level, activating the Cortex Community experience. An interior plaza will provide circulation as
well as spaces for art, games, movies, and socializing. The building’s design will be striking and visible from Interstate
64, Forest Park Avenue, and Vandeventer, making it the tallest in the neighborhood. Additionally, 4210 Duncan will
be close to Sarah Street, which is undergoing significant changes to improve the streetscape and pedestrian
connection to the Grove.

Old Post Office Plaza

St. Louis, MO

As the landscape architect, Kristy assisted Baird Sampson Neuert Architects (BSN) of Toronto with the award-winning design and preparation of landscape architecture design and drawings for the Old Post Office Plaza in downtown St. Louis. The Plaza, which sits immediately north of the recently renovated Old Post Office, is home to a famous sculpture representing the mythical character of Icarus.

The overall design intent of the plaza is to create a multi-functional downtown urban park. It can accommodate relaxation, lunch crowds, outdoor movies, and art enthusiasts. In assisting BSN, Kristy used landscape solutions and sustainability strategies to interpret the “Journey of Icarus” to complement the master plan vision. In doing so, low maintenance planting solutions were developed that matched the vision desired by the owners of the city block, the Downtown St. Louis Partnership.

The Old Post Office Plaza is located on a brownfield site created by urban demolition and framed on three sides by public streets lined with heritage buildings. While intended to feature the most important, the Old Post Office, the creation of the Plaza, in combination with adaptive reuse and restoration of the nineteenth-century landmark, also serves as an urban catalyst for revitalization and re-inhabitation of the historic city core.

One of the key elements in the success of the urban opera was the harmony between design disciplines. In addition to the composition of the planting palette that portrays the visual and tactile qualities of key settings in our story, the landscape architect served as the eyes and ears of an international team of designers. Keeping a constant open dialogue and a stream of updates and photography, the design team could interact with each other, and the site, as the structures and plantings were fine-tuned. Ongoing tuning has been required as the space and its impact on the urban fabric continue to evolve.

2010 Toronto Design Exchange, Urban Design,

Silver Award 2010 American Society of Landscape Architects,

Honor Award, St. Louis Chapter 2009

Midwest Construction’s Small Project of the Year

See additional photos here.

Fifth Street, St. Charles, MO

Saint Charles, MO

DG2 Design worked with the engineers at CMT and the City of St. Charles to design the streetscape improvements for Fifth Street, from I-70 to First Capitol Drive. The goals of the streetscape project were to create a gateway to the City of Saint Charles while enhancing the aesthetics of Fifth Street, improving traffic flow and safety and promoting pedestrian activity.

This was accomplished by creating wide pedestrian facilities to invite walking, improving the pavement on the heavily trafficked roadway, and improving wayfinding for major destinations in Saint Charles by implementing standard signage. The aesthetics of the corridor were improved with a 200-foot-long stone wall, native landscape and place-making improvements designed to be inviting to the public and representative of the historic and cultural environments of the City of Saint Charles.

With the vision in mind of the project corridor as a gateway to the city, the design team’s primary goal was to make sure the proposed improvements were respectful to, and representative of the rich historic and cultural environments of St. Charles. Through inventory and analysis of the surrounding streets as well as public meetings in which residents were able to give input into design decisions, the design team developed a framework for the new streetscape that lived up to this goal. Design elements such as improved wayfinding signage, widening of sidewalks and improvements of the roadway, new plantings, and pedestrian gathering points were all proposed using materials and an overall aesthetic feel that was appropriate to the corridor. Moreover, a multi-tiered feature wall was designed to be reminiscent of the flow of water in a river and act as the primary focal point of the gateway.

CITYPARK – St. Louis CITY SC MLS Stadium & District

St. Louis, Missouri

The ownership group for St. Louis CITY FC, the new Major League Soccer (MLS) franchise in St. Louis, had a vision for creating a vibrant mixed-use stadium district in the city’s Downtown West neighborhood. DG2 teamed with architects HOK and Snow Kreilich to design this reality.  The stadium is located within, Downtown West, a resurgent neighborhood and at the western end of the Gateway Mall, which is a corridor of public open space that connects to the Gateway Arch and Mississippi River.

 

The stadium site and adjacent parking garage lie across the street from historic Union Station and at the end of the Gateway Mall, along The Brickline Greenway linking the stadium to the Gateway Arch and Mississippi River.

 

The stadium’s scale and form emerge from the surrounding urban context.   The 22,500-seat stadium is open and transparent, with views into the field from the neighborhood and views out to the city from the seating bowl.

St. Louis CITY wants this mixed-use district to catalyze downtown activity 365 days a year. Anchored by a compact stadium that fits comfortably into its urban neighborhood, the district will include spaces for hosting year-round community events, concerts, celebrations, and a variety of outdoor activities.

 

The 31 acres site includes over 300 trees of 21 different species. The site was strategically designed to keep the stadium’s corners open, we worked with the team to set the elevation of the stadium be accessible at all four corners. The design creates flexible plazas that can host non-game day events ranging from festivals to wedding receptions, including the main 2.9 acre Lou Fusz Plaza . Street-level vendors will have the opportunity to establish stands that face out to the city from the Stadium and the Pitch 314 Garage.

 

MORE THAN A STADIUM

The stadium district also includes the team’s headquarters, training and performance center, three practice fields, and a fan pavilion and team store. STL City SC will be of a few teams in all of professional sports to have all components in one downtown location. As a result of early planning and creative solutions, the stadium will have four public sides, all reaching out to the community as an inviting entry. Fans will be able to entry the stadium on all sides with a major entry plaza serving as an optimal pre-game gathering space and post-game celebrations. This area will provide better access for fans and allow for the development of a year-round urban hub surrounding the stadium. This will not only allow for the development of a world class stadium, but will transform Downtown West into an urban activity hub open year-round and easily accessible via pedestrian pathways, bicycle and public transit.

  • 31 ACRES
  • 2.9 ACRE EAST PLAZA
  • 300 URBAN TREES (21 DIFFERENT SPECIES)
  • 54 PLANT VARIETIES
  • 1,600 FEET OF NEW CITY STREETS RESTORED
  • 1,800 FEET FROM A METROLINK STATION
  • 841 LINEAR FEET OF GREENWAY

 

Dardenne Greenway At BaratHaven Park

Dardenne Prairie, MO

BaratHaven Park, an 80-acre park and the first project for the Dardenne Greenway, features a 15-acre lake with three scenic overlooks. Envisioned to beautify the surrounding neighborhood, the park offers an accessible lake, trails, and other improvements. The three-mile BaratHaven loop winds through residential areas in the BaratHaven community in St. Charles County, forming part of the larger 80-acre park. The greenway circles a 15-acre lake, enriched with wetlands to support native wildlife and plant habitats. To the east, the greenway extends into Bluebird Meadow Park, featuring a restored wetland and prairie landscape. This extension enables future connections to Busch Wildlife, protecting an oxbow and wetland while creating prairie acres.

Creating BaratHaven Park involved stabilizing and restoring scenic areas along Dardenne Creek and Old Dardenne Creek. Natural vegetation protects adjacent land, preserving the riparian corridor for wildlife and preventing soil erosion. New wetlands along the creeks further enrich habitats for native flora and fauna.

The Dardenne Greenway incorporates a sustainable plant palette with various native Missouri species. These plants are hardy, disease and insect resistant, and suitable for local soils. They provide privacy for nearby residential areas without hindering access, define special spaces, frame desirable views, offer shade along trails, and enhance wildlife habitats.

*Project completed while at another firm.

Centennial Greenway at 39 North Greenway

Olivette & Creve Coeur, MO

In 2019, Great Rivers Greenway team collaborated with the St. Louis Economic Development Partnership to engage stakeholders of the 39 North Agtech Innovation District (39 North) to create the 39N Greenway Plan. The plan refined the Centennial Greenway route through 39 North and identified new complementary greenway connections within the district. This project will extend the Centennial Greenway from Warson Park in Olivette, through 39 North, to the intersection of Lindbergh Blvd and Schuetz Rd in the City of Creve Coeur.

The project goals for the Centennial Greenway and the 39 North Greenway are:

– Extend the Centennial Greenway from Warson Park in the City of Olivette to the intersection of Lindbergh Blvd and Schuetz Rd in the City of Creve Coeur and unincorporated St. Louis County.

– Improve safety and comfort for people walking, running, bicycling, pushing a stroller, and using a wheelchair between Warson Park and the Lindbergh Blvd/ Schuetz Rd intersection and to the multiple activity centers within 39 North.

– Create safe greenway crossings at Olive Blvd, Warson Road, and Lindbergh Blvd.

The team is currently collaborating with Great Rivers Greenway to validate greenway routes within the project area and is working to develop a preliminary design for the greenway.

 

Belleview Farm Park Master Plan

Belleview Farm Park Master Plan