Project Description

During the Spring semester of 2017, the Planting Design class at Rutgers University had the task of designing a garden in front of the new New Jersey Institute for Food, Nutrition, and Health building on the Cook/Douglass campus. The design intent was to create a smooth transition from the entrance stairs to the new wildflower meadow; the first meadow on campus recently installed as a living laboratory. Existing conditions consisted of a strip of grass that created a disconnect between the stairs and the meadow and contributed little ecological and social value to the site. The client was Rutgers School of Environmental and Biological Sciences. Visitors of the site include users of the IFNH building and students of the Landscape Architecture, Entomology, Horticulture, Ecology, and Food Science departments. The strip of grass was approximately a 1,265 acres site (11’ wide by 115’ long). The goals were to design a space that encourages users to interact with the living lab and produce a cohesive planting design to create a seamless edge to the meadow. Our role as landscape architecture students was to complete a design for this site within a pre-set budget. As a two-person team, we presented our design, along with other student designs, to a committee that included Dean Rick Ludescher, members of Rutgers Maintenance, and members of the Center for Turfgrass Science.