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Connecting the Pulaski Park Corridor Implementing success Winter 2011

Karen Dunn

Malena Maiz

Kate Tompkins

C o n way S c h o o l o f L a n d s c a p e D e s i g n


Acknowledgements We are grateful for the contributions of the many professionals, organizations, and citizens of Holyoke who provided their time and expertise. Without their effort, completion of the project would not have been possible. Maggie Bergin, Friends of Pulaski Park Joshua Berk Knox, The Trustees of Reservations John Aubin, Open Square Sonia Gonzalez, Lyman Terrace Tenant Association Sister Corinne Gurka, Mater Dolorosa School Rita Maccini, Holyoke Housing Authority Marco Maina, Nuestras Raices Terry Shepard, City of Holyoke Parks and Recreation Department Tina Serrazina, Holyoke Housing Authority Andrew Smith, Holyoke Conservation Commission Matt Sokop, City of Holyoke Department of Public Works John Sugrue, City of Holyoke Department of Public Works Joann Wauczinski, Mater Dolorosa School Don Welch, Holyoke City Council, Ward 1 Elaine Williamson, Conway School of Landscape Design All citizens and individuals who participated in the public process City of Holyoke Planning and Development City of Holyoke Police Department Pioneer Valley Planning Commission We are especially indebted to Supervisor Charlie Lotspeich, of Holyoke Heritage State Park, for unveiling Holyoke’s past in the present-day surroundings of Center City and for contributing his extensive library of historical images. Special appreciation goes to the Conway School of Landscape Design formal presentation critics who shared their feedback and expertise: Anne Capra Peter Flinker Daniel Smith Finally, we would like to thank the Conway School of Landscape Design faculty and staff for their critical analysis, support, and guidance: Mollie Babize Ken Byrne Elizabeth Farnsworth Paul Cawood Hellmund Bill Lattrell Glen Motzkin Keith Zaltzberg


Contents Executive Summary...................................................................... iv Resumen Ejecutivo....................................................................... v Introduction................................................................................. 1

ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE, 1 PROJECT GOALS, 2 PLANNING AND REVITALIZATION EFFORTS, 2 PUBLIC PROCESS, 3

Context. ...................................................................................... 5

REGION, 5 HISTORY, 6 INVENTORY OF CORRIDOR PARKS, 9

Analysis...................................................................................... 11

SLOPES, 12 DRAINAGE AND STORMWATER, 14 RIPARIAN HABITAT, 17 VEGETATION, 18 VIEWS, 20 ACCESS AND CIRCULATION, 22 FACILITIES, 27 CURRENT AND FUTURE USERS, 28 SUMMARY ANALYSIS, 30

Vision: Beyond the Gateway.......................................................... 31 Design Concepts.......................................................................... 33

DEMOCRATIC PARKS, 33 COMMUNITY EXCHANGE, 33 CASE STUDIES, 34

Design Alternatives....................................................................... 39

GATEWAYS, 40 IMPROVING LYMAN AND BEECH STREETS INTERSECTION, 41 A NEW TRAIL, 42 LYMAN STREET CROSSWALK, 43 CANALWALK CONTINUES, 44 CLOSE THE ROTARY, 45 ENHANCE TRAFFIC CALMING, 46 STORMWATER MANAGEMENT, 47 MOVABLE FEAST, 48 BE A GOOD SPORT, 49 ARTS IN THE PARK, 50

Toolkit......................................................................................... 51

KEY PARTNERSHIPS, 51 COMPLETE STREETS, 52 RESOURCES, 54 BANK STABILIZATION, 57 CONTACT INFORMATION FOR DESIGN ALTERNATIVES, 58

References............................................................................................... 61


Executive Summary “Our nation’s public parks and recreation areas are the roots of local communities. They are our green space, our trails, our ball fields, our playgrounds, our gardens, our beaches, our waterways, our imaginations and our cultural heritage. They are our legacy.” Barbara Tulipane, CEO of National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) Once a bustling and thriving city of industry, decades of disinvestment have stripped the City of Holyoke of population, resources, jobs, and quality housing stock. In the broader region of rural western Massachusetts, perceptions about the high crime rate and dangerous streets overshadow assets like compact development, green power production, and comparatively inexpensive real estate. Recently, the City has focused its efforts on revitalizing the historical areas of downtown Holyoke. Restoring walkability, attracting new jobs and businesses, and promoting city districts with unique architecture and resources are top priorities in the Center City Vision Plan (CCVP), adopted in 2009. The CCVP will also guide the forthcoming Urban Renewal Plan, a blueprint for concrete projects and partnerships that will direct Holyoke’s redevelopment and revitalization over the next 20 years.

Fragmented connections between these public greenspaces can be mended and expanded, enhancing quality of life for area residents and supporting CCVP goals of a more walkable downtown. These greenspaces, linked and reinvigorated, can connect people back to overlooked natural and industrial assets. A democratic vision of public parks, open and welcoming to the entire City of Holyoke, can become a vehicle for reinstating the community’s capacity to make its own decisions about additional programming that may be appropriate for each park and athletic field. Continued partnerships with Holyoke’s citizen activists and non-profit organizations can become a bridge to knit these diverse populations together again.

Holyoke’s physical environment drives social fragmentation, isolating members of the Center City neighborhoods. Topography concentrates development and housing in the urban center, making public parks a vital resource for many who lack means to visit the larger natural landscapes of west Holyoke and the Mt. Tom Range. Expansive views that once connected urban people to these scenic areas are blocked by overgrown, invasive vegetation. Absent gateways, private development that conceals Pulaski Park, and traffic patterns that compromise safe access to the parks conspire to keep people divided from each other and from their open space resources.

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Google.com Maps

Pulaski Park is perfectly positioned to become the centerpiece of one of these revitalized neighborhoods, Downtown/Prospect Heights. Its location overlooking the natural beauty of the Connecticut River and Mt. Tom and the industrial heritage of the city at the Holyoke Dam is unique in a city with significant parks and open spaces. Together with Mitchell Field and Avery Field, located only a few blocks from Pulaski Park, these public greenspaces form a potential corridor along the eastern edge of Prospect Heights.

Overlooking the Connecticut River and the Holyoke Dam, Pulaski Park connects Holyoke residents to natural beauty and industrial heritage.


Resumen Ejecutivo “Los parques públicos y áreas recreacionales de nuestra nación son las raices de las comunidades locales. Son nuestros espacios verdes, nuestros caminos, nuestras canchas deportivas, nuestros patios de juegos, nuestras bancas, nuestros arroyos, nuestra imaginación y nuestro patrimonio cultural. Son nuestro legado.” Barbara Tulipane, CEO of National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) La población de la ciudad de Holyoke (alguna vez prospera comunidad industrial) ha sido victima del naufragio económico causado por la falta de inversiones y empleo que han desencadenado una caída en la plusvalía del lugar y el abandono de parques y edificios. La perspectiva general de la comunidad rural del 0este de Massachusetts, es la de un lugar con alto índice de violencia e inseguridad, estereotipos que hacen olvidar una variedad de aspectos positivos como su desarrollo urbano compacto, con producción de energía sustentable , así como el bajo costo de la propiedad. Recientemente el gobierno de la ciudad se ha enfocado en revitalizar las áreas históricas del centro de Holyoke. Las prioridades principales han quedado plasmadas en el Center City Vision Plan, desarrollado en el año 2009, y en donde a través de la arquitectura se proyecta la promoción de los distritos ciudadanos por medio de la restauración de áreas físicas para los peatones, así como la atracción de nuevos negocios y oportunidades de trabajo .

otra vez. Pensamos que promoviendo una visión democrática de los parques públicos, incluyendo a todos los miembros de la ciudad de Holyoke, es posible restaurar la capacidad de la comunidad para tomar sus propias decisiones en otras áreas del parque y las campos deportivos. Este reporte incluye una selección de alternativas probables que fueron identificadas durante el proceso de consulta pública y describe como su implantación, cuando va de la mano del dialogo constante, aumenta el sentido de comunidad y alivia la alienación de los habitantes del vecindario de Downtown-Prospect Heights.

Este reporte intenta mostrar si en efecto las conexiones físicas entre estos espacios verdes son posibles, y como estas conexiones apoyan las metas del CCVP hacia un centro de la ciudad mas afecto a sus peatones. Este reporte también tomara en cuenta las formas en como el ambiente físico conlleva hacia una fragmentación social que aísla a los residentes de los vecindarios del centro de la ciudad, y como las relaciones constantes entre los ciudadanos activistas de Holyoke y las organizaciones no gubernamentales pueden ser el puente que reintegre a la diversidad de su habitantes,

Google.com Maps

El Parque Pulaski esta destinado en convertirse en uno de los protagonistas de esta revitalización en el vecindario de Downtown-Prospect Heights. El parque ubicado a la orilla del Río Connecticut con vista hacia Monte Tom, conserva la herencia industrial de la Presa Holyoke y lo vuelve un lugar único, entre los múltiples parques y espacios abiertos que tiene la ciudad. En conjunto con los pequeños parques de Mitchell Field y Avery Field, localizados solo a varias cuadras del Parque Pulaski, estos tres espacios forman un corredor de áreas verdes en el borde Este de Prospect Heights.

Con vistas hacia la presa y Mt. Tom, el Parque Pulaski conecta a los residentes de Holyoke con la belleza de la naturaleza y el patrimonio de la industria.

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

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Introduction E N V I R O N M E N TA L J U S T I C E

by the Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EOEEA).

Today a triad of typical northern New England mill cities —including Holyoke, Chicopee, and Springfield—cluster along both shores of the Connecticut River to form a thickly settled urban waterfront. Home to a rich history of industrialization and diverse ethnic communities, the challenges and opportunities facing this region are unique within the context of more rural western Massachusetts.

The Environmental Justice (EJ) Policy of the EOEEA is a new tool in the Commonwealth’s effort to protect the environment and public health. Environmental justice is based on the principle that all people have a right to be protected from environmental pollution and to live in and enjoy a clean and healthful environment. The Policy focuses EOEEA resources to service the highminority/low-income neighborhoods in Massachusetts by promoting community involvement in planning and environmental decisions, and by investing in urban parks and greenspace.

Holyoke’s Center City neighborhoods are some of the most disadvantaged in Massachusetts, designated as Environmental Justice communities

Population statistics of Holyoke in contrast with the Commonwealth of Massachusetts (Census data)


 Average
number
of
persons/square
mile
(2000):
 Median
household
income
(1999):
 Persons
below
poverty
level
(1999):
 High
school
graduates,
percentage
of
persons
25+
(2000)
 Language
other
than
English
spoken
at
home,
percentage
of
 age
5+
(2000):
 Persons
of
Hispanic
or
Latino
origin,
percentage
(in
2000):
 White
persons,
percentage
(in
2000):
 


Massachusetts
 809.6
 $50,502
 9.3%
 84.8%
 18.7%


Holyoke
 1871.2
 $30,441
 26.4%
 70.0%
 42.8%


6.8%
 84.5%


41.4%
 65.8%


Massachusetts Environmental Justice Criteria: Environmental Justice (EJ) populations, as defined below, dominate the historical city center in which Pulaski Park is located: Income Minority population Foreign-born English proficiency

Households earn 65% or less of statewide median household income 25% or more of residents belong to a minority group 25% or more of residents are foreign-born 25% or more of residents lack English language proficiency

Pulaski Park Corridor LEGEND Meets one criteria: minority Meets two criteria: income and minority Meets three criteria: income, minority, and English Lakes and Rivers Parks and Open Space

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

Data Source: Mass GIS , Mass DOT, PVTA, Google Earth, Public Input

ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE ANALYSIS CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR INTRODUCTION 0

CORRIDOR MAP

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Karen Dunn I Kate Tompkins I Malena Maiz

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PROJECT GOALS One of the first planned industrial cities in the country, Holyoke has suffered disinvestment and blight over the last several decades, like so many old New England mill towns. Recently, the City of Holyoke created the Holyoke Redevelopment Authority (HRA) to address the decline of the historical core of the city and prioritize revitalization efforts for the district. The Center City area consists of four neighborhoods enveloped to the north and east by the Connecticut River, bordered by Interstate 391 to the south and Route 202 to the west.

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR GOALS:

Connecting the Pulaski Park Corridor was initiated by the non-profit Friends of Pulaski Park and EOEEA through the Gateways City Parks program. Holyoke is one of twenty-two Massachusetts cities eligible for the program, which targets communities with populations greater than 35,000 and median household incomes, per capita incomes, and educational attainment levels below the state average. Preference is given to park projects located close to urban centers and public transportation, or serving environmental justice populations. The initiative expands outdoor recreational opportunities in places where residents often have few other options. Redeveloping neighborhood parks can also trigger further urban revitalization.

• Examine the role Pulaski Park can play in the implementation and support of the Center City Vision Plan

• Analyze the project area’s physical, ecological, and social systems • Investigate ways to connect the parks (specifically, links between Pulaski Park, Mitchell Field, and Avery Field)

PLANNING AND R E V I TA L I Z AT I O N E F F O R T S What is the Center City Vision Plan and why is it important? Nearly 160 years after Holyoke’s founding, a new vision for the city is underway, restoring and recreating connections throughout the community. In 2009 the Holyoke Redevelopment Authority and the City of Holyoke conducted a visioning study for the

Center City Vision Plan The Center City Vision Plan identifies both site-specific strategies and broad principles to guide the City of Holyoke. Key components of the Plan include improving connectivity to and throughout the Center City and making the neighborhoods and downtown amenities more accessible. (Center City Vision Plan) Plan de la Visión para el centro de la Ciudad El plan identifica estrategias y principios in situ para guiar a la cuidad de Holyoke. Los componentes claves del plan incluyen mejoras en conectividad desde y hacia el centro de la ciudad, así como facilitar la accesibilidad de los vecindarios al centro de la ciudad.

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downtown core. The six-month study, involving more than 400 residents, included the creation of a Center City Vision Plan Steering Committee. Participation and input from numerous public, private, and non-profit organizations through public forums, workshops, meetings, interviews and other activities helped to formulate a framework for the revitalization of the heart of Holyoke. The resulting Center City Vision Plan (CCVP), adopted in August, 2009, will guide redevelopment in the historical center of Holyoke; the neighborhoods of South Holyoke, the Flats, Churchill, and Downtown/ Prospect Heights. Currently in progress, the Holyoke Urban Renewal Plan will build upon the public input from the 2009 CCVP by tying actions to identified goals. The Massachusetts Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development is providing assistance to revitalize deteriorated areas in Holyoke by funding and supporting private investment to achieve a balanced mix of housing, business, and industry.

Park, lack of welcoming gateways at all of the parks, and inadequate park maintenance and programing. Among other notable responses, the community expressed interest in promoting Holyoke’s industrial history and its relationship with the river, capitalizing on green hydroelectric power through educational programs, sponsoring more festivals and cultural events, and extending the Canalwalk from the arts community to Pulaski Park. While community discourse formed the basis of this plan’s recommendations, key neighborhood populations have been absent from this process. It is essential that relationships be cultivated through continued engagement and dialogue to further refine these concepts. The neighborhood residents are not only primary users of the parks, but, with nurturing, can provide the long-term stewardship vital to the success of the parks.

Another strategic document advancing revitalization efforts in Holyoke is the 2005 Open Space and Recreation Plan (OSRP). The OSRP provides a five-year framework to protect valuable natural resources and the lands that contain unique historical, recreational, and scenic values. It also offers guiding principles for the acquisition and use of open space, conservation land, and recreation areas throughout the city. Connecting the Pulaski Park Corridor builds upon these planning efforts by augmenting the goals and objectives identified in these ongoing initiatives; specifically, prioritizing and reestablishing connections among people, the parks, and the river. Moreover, the plan seeks out tangible partnerships with private and non-profit organizations to fill the gaps of manpower and financial resources. The significance of these relationships cannot be overstated, along with the importance of growing the list of project partners.

PUBLIC PROCESS In two highly interactive public meetings facilitated by the Connecting the Pulaski Park Corridor team, participants were charged with evaluating and providing feedback about community assets, issues and obstacles, environmental concerns, and park amenities and improvements. Top priorities identified by the public include poor visibility and impaired security around the parks, high speed traffic compromising pedestrian safety, invasive vegetation blocking the views at Pulaski

Public Meetings Community members worked together at two public meetings. Participants provided information about the community and identified desirable connections between the parks of the study area.

Juntas para la comunidad Miembros de la comunidad trabajaron en conjunto en dos juntas. Los participantes aportaron información de la comunidad y demostraron su interes con aportaciones que conectaban parques en el área de estudio.

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR INTRODUCTION

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Context REGION Holyoke is located in western Massachusetts along the western bank of the Connecticut River. Flowing south from its headwaters in Canada and through four states from Vermont to the Long Island Sound, the river drains the largest watershed in New England and has been designated an American Heritage River, highlighting its regional importance and directing regional resources toward its protection, revitalization, and preservation. A long, agriculturally rich valley cradles the river through much of western Massachusetts. Annual spring flooding recharged these lands before dams along the river’s length controlled the water volume. Holyoke sits at the southern end of the Pioneer Valley with twelve miles of riverfront on its eastern border. A spine of sharp hills divides Holyoke from north to south. Mt. Tom, the highest peak of the Mt. Tom Range, which in turn sits within the larger Metacomet Range, reaches an elevation of 1202’. The Connecticut River sits at an elevation of only about 120’. The sharp difference

between the river’s elevation and the nearby heights of the mountain peaks gives the impression that the Mt. Tom Range is a much larger, more impressive system than would be the case if the range were seen directly against the Berkshire foothills to the west of the city, which reach average heights of 1500’ to 1700’. The mountainous spine that bisects the City of Holyoke created two very different communities. The western half of Holyoke is far more rural than the old industrial city core in the eastern flats. Rugged terrain and shallow, rocky soil made it difficult to run utilities west of the mountains, restricting development for decades. Large portions of the Mt. Tom Range and areas in the northwest corner of Holyoke are conserved open spaces, set aside to protect the unusual mixture of plant and animal species combining where a mountain range meets a major river.

Pulaski Park Mitchell Field Avery Field

Pulaski Park Corridor

City of Holyoke Hampden County Massachusetts Two Halves of Holyoke A finger of rocky and mountainous land, the western end of the Holyoke Range and Mt. Tom overlooks Holyoke’s old industrial downtown. Large tracts of this rugged landscape preserve and protect rare wildlife and habitats. Interstate 91 bisects Holyoke parallel to the Mt. Tom Range, forming a major northsouth commuting corridor through the city. While the limitations of extending infrastructure over the Range inhibit growth in the western half of Holyoke, the eastern half remains compact, populous, and diverse.

Dos partes de Holyoke Mt. Tom está formado por una serie de montañas rocosas al oeste de la ciudad. Desde lo alto de las montañas se divisa el centro urbano e histórico de la ciudad. Un gran porcentaje de esta tierra protege animales en peligro de extinción junto con sus respectivos habitats. La I-91 divide Holyoke a lo largo de las montañas formando un boulevard. Los desarrollos habitacionales del lado oeste de la ciudad tienen terrenos mas amplios debido a las restricciones que presentan ciertas infraestructuras en las montañas.

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR CONTEXT

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Eastern Holyoke is home to the city’s compactly developed urban center. Nearly a quarter of the population lives in the historical downtown, which represents perhaps only an eighth of the city’s total land area. Parks and open spaces in this portion of the city serve many more people, and their value is proportionately higher to those who depend on them for relief from urban landscapes. This dichotomy repeats within the broader landscape of rural western Massachusetts. The challenges of urban Holyoke are very different from those of its rural neighbors. In the region, as within Holyoke, a population is suspended in a small pocket that is unlike the surrounding environment.

H I S TO R Y

Holyoke’s development was integrally tied to the Connecticut River. The power produced by the dam and its three hand-dug canals fueled its rapid industrial growth. The city still draws 50–60 percent of its electricity from the dam; turbines generate power by pulling water from within the canals under the old mill buildings. The system required fifty years to complete and is one of only a few in the nation that cycle water through two levels of turbines in the first and second canals before returning it to the Connecticut River.

Charlie Lotspeich, Holyoke Heritage State Park

One hundred and sixty years ago, a small team of speculators and their engineers came to a particular

spot on the Connecticut River where there was a natural drop of more than thirty feet. The engineers determined that the water produced abundant power here, and it could be harnessed for industrial manufacturing. The investors were veterans of development, having built the industrial towns of Lowell and Lawrence, in northeastern Massachusetts. They imagined a gridded city filled with workers and machines, bought the land on the western bank of the river, and the City of Holyoke was born.

View of the dam and city from the eastern shore of the Connecticut River The cleared banks of a younger Pulaski Park meet the river’s edge. Beyond are the spires of the City of Holyoke.

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Vista de la presa y la ciudad desde el lado este del Río Connecticut Los bancos despejados de un Parque Pulaski antiguo se encontraban con la orilla del río. Al fondo se ven las torres de la ciudad.


Charlie Lotspeich, Holyoke Heritage State Park

Holyoke is considered one of the first planned industrial cities in the United States. An original plan for the city from 1847 proposed more than fifty mills to be built along the canals; they were constructed almost exactly as depicted. Its planned street pattern is remarkably similar to the grid that remains in place even today. Its orderly and logical streets were designed to move people and commerce to the mills, where the “Paper City’s” lifeblood—its workers—toiled alongside and sometimes within huge papermaking and textile machines. Holyoke’s current population of 40,000 is just two thirds of its peak workforce of more than 60,000 at the turn of the twentieth century. Mill jobs were difficult, dull, and potentially dangerous, but they paid a steady wage and offered a chance to build a new life. The waves of Irish, French Canadian, German, Italian, Polish, and Portuguese immigrants who came for mill jobs and settled in the city throughout the 1800s gave Holyoke a rich cultural inheritance.

Mill Workers Large numbers of immigrant families settled in Holyoke, attracted by jobs in the paper and textile mills. Women and men worked among the machines powered by the dam and canals.

Charlie Lotspeich, Holyoke Heritage State Park

Plan Original de Holyoke, 1847 El plan original de las calles de la ciudad se ha conservado con pocos cambios, similar a este bosquejo que fue realizado antes de su construcción.

Charlie Lotspeich, Holyoke Heritage State Park

Original Plan of Holyoke, 1847 The street grid system has changed very little from this conceptual drawing, which predates construction of the city.

Trabajadores de las Fabricas Un gran numero de familias inmigrantes se asentaron en Holyoke, atraídos por puestos en las industrias textiles y las fábricas de papel. Mujeres y hombres trabajaban entre las máquinas que funcionaban bajo la energía generada por la presa.

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR CONTEXT

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Charlie Lotspeich, Holyoke Heritage State Park

Dwight and Main Streets Intersection, 1894 Holyoke’s urban population enjoyed an early multimodal transportation system, with facilities for pedestrians, bicyclists, and public and private horse-drawn carriages.

Intersección en las calles Dwight y Main, 1894 La población urbana de Holyoke desde temprana época, ya gozaba de un sistema de transporte multimodal, con facilidades para los peatones, ciclistas y carruajes activados por caballos.

In its heyday of the 1920s, Holyoke was a promising and populous city of industry. Its compact design accommodated large numbers of people and its population enjoyed access to public transportation, civic organizations, and social and recreational opportunities. Downtown Holyoke was known as a dynamic city that vigorously supported arts and culture.

unique character of the city. Holyoke relies on the clean, renewable energy generated at the dam for two-thirds of its electric power. The historical downtown remains compact and densely populated. A new pedestrian trail called the Canalwalk celebrates the history of industrial manufacturing along the man-made canals and will connect with future passenger rail and proposed bike trails. Multiple city planning documents guide the city toward a revitalized, walkable downtown. Three historical public parks are at the forefront of a new focus on enhancing connections within Center City Holyoke.

Things began to change in the 1930s. One at a time at first, and then more rapidly, the mills moved south out of New England, taking with them the jobs that had defined Holyoke and made it wealthy. The city began to decline. By the 1970s whole industries had left Holyoke. Its mills stood empty and its downtown steadily lost businesses. So many abandoned mill buildings burned that Holyoke was sometimes called “the Fire City.” New immigrants entering the city from Puerto Rico, looking for tobacco farm work, found fewer opportunities for employment and cultural assimilation than previous generations attracted by the mills. The realities of longterm disinvestment threatened to overwhelm Holyoke’s valuable industrial landscape and legacy as a source of manpower and productivity. Today, some of the surviving historic mill buildings have successfully been reclaimed for a variety of uses including retail, offices, and art galleries, shaping the

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Open Square This successful mill renovation incorporates mixed-use development.

Edificio Open Square Esta fabrica fue renovada exitosamente e incorpora uso mixto.


Originally designed as a promenade park offering sweeping views of the Connecticut River, Mt. Tom, and the Holyoke Dam, Pulaski Park played a significant role in the development of downtown Holyoke. In 1883, the Holyoke Water and Power Company donated a strip of riverfront land to the City of Holyoke. Once one of the most populous areas in the city, home to a shantytown and crowded tenements perched on a bluff, the property became a five-acre public park that was known for many years as Prospect Park because of its popular scenic overlooks. In 1907 selected aspects of a redesign plan by the firm of Frederick Law Olmsted were implemented; today only the pathways and balustrades remain from that redesign. A large Polish immigrant community developed around the park, and in 1939 Prospect Park was renamed Pulaski Park after General Count Casimir Pulaski, the Polish hero who fought for the Colonies during the American Revolution. In 2004, Pulaski Park was named to the National Register of Historic Places.

Courtesy of Friends of Pulaski Park

I N V E N TO R Y O F C O R R I D O R PA R K S

Pulaski Park Image, 1890 The sweeping view of the river and nearby mountains made the park a popular spot to walk and be seen by others along the promenade paths. Imágen del Parque Pulaski, 1890 La espectacular vista del río y las montañas aledañas hicieron una vez que el parque fuera un centro social atractivo para los usuarios del parque.

Democratic Parks

Frederick Law Olmsted broadly envisioned public spaces of culture and recreation as accessible to all people regardless of income or situation. His parks were designed to provide social and psychological refuge from the pace and pressures of industrialized cities. His personal views about the importance of shared communities and the opportunity of landscape architects to influence the health of city life inspired his legacy of democratic parks.

Pulaski Park Image, 2011 Today dense vegetation on the northern embankment blocks the scenic views that once characterized the park. Imágen del Parque Pulaski, 2011 La densa vegetación de la pendiente norte, obstruye el paisaje que antes caracterizaba al parque.

Today Pulaski Park is surrounded by market rate condos and apartments, senior housing, a Catholic day school, a public housing project, and nearby businesses (see Current and Future Users analysis map, page 28). At the southern end, a basketball court, volleyball court, playground equipment, and a splash park see regular use during daylight hours (see Facilities analysis map, page 27). Benches and a more formal system of concrete pathways occupy the middle of the park, and at the western end many dog walkers use the open grassy area. Tennis courts and bathrooms were recently removed from the western end of the park due to poor condition (see Facilities analysis map, page 27).

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR CONTEXT

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Mitchell Field is one of only four regulation-size baseball fields in the City of Holyoke. This well-used seasonal park was here for at least a decade before the state road system changed and a rotary was built around it in 1960. The field is rented to adult teams and is home field for a local private high school. Avery Field sits within blocks of historical row houses, tucked away as a neighborhood park. Originally called Hampden Playground, the park was renamed in 1933 in honor of Mayor Nathan P. Avery, whose administration instituted the municipal playground system (Holyoke.org). While the youth baseball field is used all summer by the public schools, the basketball court and playground equipment are popular with the surrounding residents. This park officially closes at dusk but it is not gated.

Parque Pulaski: ancas y área de jardín rodeadas por condominios particulares

Mitchell Field: one of only four regulation-size baseball fields in Holyoke

Campo Mitchell: Una de las cuatro canchas reguladas en tamaño para la práctica de baseball en Holyoke

Avery Field: neighborhood homes border all but the eastern edge (shown)

Campo Avery: Casas de la colonia rodean el parque excepto por el lado noreste.

Google Earth

Google Earth

Together, these parks and the neighborhoods around them form this project’s focus area, the Pulaski Park Corridor.

Pulaski Park: benches and grassy area bordered by private condos

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Analysis Site analysis is a method of assessing physical, ecological, and social systems of a site. Physical elements include natural features of the earth’s surface and their formation, including topography, geology, soils, climate, rivers and water features. Ecological systems involve the relationships between living organisms and their interactions with the natural or developed environment. Social context may encompass human settlement patterns, history and heritage, location, land uses, transportation, recreation, culture, and art. Through a rigorous review process, opportunities and constraints of the site are identified, leading to an understanding of linkages between natural and man-made conditions. This knowledge helps develop ideal concepts, schematic alternatives, and preliminary designs.

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March 09, 2011

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332 South Deerfield Rd. Conway, MA 01341

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Parks Analysis

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CONWAY SCHOOL OF LANDSCAPE DESIGN

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CONWAY SCHOOL OF LANDSCAPE DESIGN

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CORRIDOR MAP Karen Dunn I Kate Tompkins I Malena Maiz

332 South Deerfield Rd. Conway, MA 01341

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Karen Dunn I Kate Tompkins I Malena Maiz

CONWAY SCHOOL OF LANDSCAPE DESIGN 332 South Deerfield Rd. Conway, MA 01341 Holyoke@csld.edu

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March 09, 2011

°

Legend

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

Facilities Lakes and Rivers

Data Source: Mass GIS

Parks and Open Space

HOLYOKE CITY MAP 0

0.025

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Legend Current and Future Users

Karen Dunn I Kate Tompkins I Malena Maiz

CONWAY SCHOOL OF LANDSCAPE DESIGN 332 South Deerfield Rd. Conway, MA 01341 Holyoke@csld.edu

Holyoke City Limits

February 28, 2011

°

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR ANALYSIS

Holyoke Building Footprints Lakes and Rivers Parks and Open Space

11


SLOPES

Key Map

body

Mt

. To

m

LEGEND 0-3% 3-5% 5-8% 8-12% 12-20% 20-100% Center City City of Holyoke

Pulaski Park Corridor

A spine of rugged hills rises abruptly to the west

Center City

of Holyoke’s urbanized river valley. Steep slopes

91

have concentrated development in the flat, downtown area. CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

Data Source: Mass GIS

SLOPES ANALYSIS The Metacomet Ridge mountain range runs north from southern Connecticut, paralleling the Connecticut River CONWAY SCHOOL OF LANDSCAPE DESIGN and terminating only through western Massachusetts a few miles from the Vermont and New Hampshire borders. Rugged and sharp, the Metacomet is composed of layers of volcanic basalt (called traprock) and sedimentary rock and is much younger than the other mountains in the region, the Appalachians. The Ridge’s highest traprock peak, Mt. Tom, overlooks Center City Holyoke from an elevation of 1202’ (Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation). Most of the peaks in the Mt. Tom Range—a subset of the Metacomet Ridge—are between 600’ and 700’, including Mt. Nonotuck, Dry Knoll, Goat Peak, Whiting Peak, and Deadtop. 0

0.3

0.6

Karen Dunn I Kate Tompkins I Malena Maiz

March 09, 2011

332 South Deerfield Rd. Conway, MA 01341 Holyoke@csld.edu

1.2

1.8

°

Between the river and the mountains, the densely developed part of the city steps up in a series of relatively level terraces. In several places, these flat areas are cut by sharp ravines, or dingles, which drain toward the Connecticut River. These dingles were major barriers to passage in the early development of the

12

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

Miles 2.4

city’s streets and remain relatively untouched wooded valleys through urban Holyoke (City of Holyoke Open Space and Recreation Plan, 2005). Legend

CenterCityLimits

TOWNS_POLY

Cities Boundary

TOWN

Holyoke City

<VALUE>

0-3% 3-5% 5-8%

8-12% 12-20% 20-100%

IMPLICATIONS •

Holyoke’s steeply sloped mountains, ridges, and hills drain down from the Mt. Tom Range to the Connecticut River.

Steep areas are more difficult to build on because of added expense and increased risk of erosion, and require special efforts for roads or driveways. This has concentrated development in the historical part of the city, where grade changes are much less severe.


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The paths shown in the diagram where designed by the Olmsted Brothers.

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Topographic Map of Pulaski Park (Not to scale) Contour lines occur every 10’.

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The northeast property boundary of Pulaski Park falls steeply to the railroad and the Connecticut River. Pulaski Park sits on an elevated bluff above the Connecticut River. The park’s northern property line is the outside edge of its railings at the top of the embankment. Slopes taper more gently at the ends of the bank but become increasingly steep in the center, dropping sixty feet to the railroad tracks at the foot of the hill.

IMPLICATIONS •

Steep slopes restrict access to the river. Providing access down the embankment at Pulaski Park would require significant grade changes.

Slopes on the eastern end of the park, of up to 60 percent grade, can be unstable and prone to erosion. The north slope of Pulaski Park leading down to the Connecticut River drops steeply down to the railroad tracks at a maximum grade of 60 percent.

La pendiente norte del Parque Pulaski que lleva al Río Connecticut desciende pronunciadamente con hasta 60 por ciento de inclinación hacia las vías del tren.

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR ANALYSIS

13


D R A I N A G E A N D S TO R M WAT E R

Key Map

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CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

Data Source: Mass GIS, NHESP, Holyoke Planning Department

ENVIRONMENTAL ANALYSIS Pulaski Park is bounded along its northern and HOLYOKE CORRIDOR MAP northeastern edges by a sixty-foot high embankment, whichCONWAY falls steeply to the Connecticut River. Center SCHOOL OF LANDSCAPE DESIGN City’s density creates large areas of impervious buildings and pavement. Numerous storm grates in the park and nearby streets convey precipitation through underground basins and pipes away from the city into the river. 0

0.025

0.05

0.1

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Karen Dunn I Kate Tompkins I Malena Maiz

February 28, 2011

332 South Deerfield Rd. Conway, MA 01341 Holyoke@csld.edu

°

IMPLICATIONS

14

Surface runoff and snowmelt over Pulaski Park’s embankment erodes the steep slope and contributes to sedimentation at the edge of the Connecticut River.

Non-point source pollutants from buildings and road surfaces are concentrated in runoff flowing over impervious surfaces, and spill unfiltered into the nearby canals and river.

Stormwater lost through storm grates is not

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

Miles 0.2

captured for reuse and carries pollutants to the river.

Legend

TOWN_ID

Opportunities to capitalize on Pulaski Park as a filter for the city’s stormwater runoff before it reaches the Connecticut River are largely lost to the ecologically unsound drainage systems within and around the park. 137

<all other values>

Parks and Open Space

Impervious Surface Value

High : 1 Low : 0


A’ A Key Map

SECTION A-A’

(Not to scale)

The section shows Pulaski Park looking northwest. The runoff erodes the steep hillside at the northern edge of the park and carries sediment directly to the Connecticut River.

Stormwater grate on Maple Street collects surface runoff.

Alcantarilla en la calle Maple capta el agua de lluvia que corre en superficies no permeables.

Stormwater runoff undercuts the foundation of the promenade.

El constante flujo de agua de lluvia daña los cimientos del parque junto a la pendiente.

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR ANALYSIS

15


Ro ut

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20

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#

LEGEND

£ ¤ 202

Combined Sewer Overflow

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Parks and Open Space

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CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

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ENVIRONMENTAL ANALYSIS HOLYOKE CORRIDOR MAP

0

0.025

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Karen Dunn I Kate Tompkins I Malena Maiz

CONWAY SCHOOL OF LANDSCAPE DESIGN

Legend

February 28, 2011

332 South Deerfield Rd. Conway, MA 01341 Holyoke@csld.edu

CO

NN

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Miles 0.2

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Parks and Open Space

Combined Sewer Overflow

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Holyoke’s Combined Sewer Overflow (CSO) systems are antiquated collection systems constructed to carry both sewage and stormwater in the same pipe. There are fourteen CSO outlets in Holyoke. In dry weather, sewage is captured and routed to the wastewater treatment plant. Under heavy rain or snowmelt, stormwater overwhelms the system and mixes with untreated sewage, carrying it directly into the river and canal system. Nearby Springfield and Chicopee also employ these antiquated systems. Each year, 1.8 billion gallons of stormwater and sewage are regionally discharged into the Connecticut River. Holyoke’s estimated cost to separate these systems is $45 million.

CSO System – Dry Weather

IMPLICATIONS

CO

NN

EC

TIC

UT

RIV

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CSO System – Heavy Rain or Snowmelt

16

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

River water quality is routinely impacted by CSO contaminated stormwater, threatening fish and wildlife. Potential health problems from exposure to pollutants may restrict recreation on the river.

High costs to separate the Combined Sewer Overflow system requires that public projects and individuals reduce runoff, where they can, with alternative solutions and green infrastructure.


R I PA R I A N H A B I TAT

Key Map

LOG POND Rou

te

20

2

CITY BEACH

E2

02

£ ¤ 202

LEGEND NHESP Priority and Estimated Habitat

Lo g

Po nd

Ro

ad

UT RO

SYLVIA LANE PARK

Canals and River PUMP STATION W AY

Parks and Open Space

Stre

et

AR

BO

R

MITCHELL FIELD Lind en

SA

IN T

DEAN PARK AVERY FIELD

KO

LB

E

DR

Sa

Stre Elm

GRAMPS PARK

ST RE ET

int K

olbe

IV E D riv

e

ST

The Wetlands Protection

RE

ET

et

KOSCIUSZKO PARK

tre

ST

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Act protects fragile

PULASKI PARK

ET

riparian corridors and

le

io

n

rt Cou st Ea

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ST RE NT FR O

tC ou rt

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et re St e

Main Stre et

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embankment to the river.

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HOLYOKE HERITAGE STATE PARK

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et

Park and the entire

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RE

141

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hn

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man

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applies to most of Pulaski

Ly

ST

an

ST RE

MAIN

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KOREAN VETERANS MEMORIAL PLAZA ES

endangered species. It

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ita ge

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Stre

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lk

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W ES Hig h

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la ce

ST RE re

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ma P

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on

et

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plet

re

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Ap

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MA P

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tS

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stnu

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ST

ST RE

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ET

ET

W al nu

et

tS

tre

et

LY MA N

U V 116

200’ CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

Data Source: Mass GIS, NHESP, Holyoke Planning Department

ENVIRONMENTAL ANALYSIS The Massachusetts Wetlands Protection Act regulates HOLYOKE CORRIDOR MAP activities around all perennial streams and rivers in the state. The Riverfront Area is a special designation, CONWAY SCHOOL OF LANDSCAPE DESIGN applied to perennial rivers and streams to protect fragile riparian ecosystems. 0

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Karen Dunn I Kate Tompkins I Malena Maiz

February 28, 2011

332 South Deerfield Rd. Conway, MA 01341 Holyoke@csld.edu

°

The Riverfront Area extends 200’ from the edge of any perennial river or stream, with exceptions for specific historical areas or urban sites where development to the river’s edge predates the regulations. In Holyoke, only the mill district south and east of the first canal is exempt. The Conservation Commission administers the Wetlands Protection Act in Holyoke. The Conservation Commission and the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) must permit any changes to existing built structures, proposed new construction, cutting, filling, dumping, or tree removal. Planting of native vegetation is allowed anytime within the Riverfront Area.

from degradation. Some protected aquatic species and dragonflies are known to be in Holyoke, as well as eagles that nest up and down the Connecticut River. Water quality is also an issue of concern for the NHESP.

Miles 0.2

Legend

TOWN_ID

137

<all other values>

NHESP Prioirty Habitat Parks and Open Space

IMPLICATIONS •

Multiple agencies oversee the riparian zone between Pulaski Park and the Connecticut River. Separate permits from both the Holyoke Conservation Commission and the NHESP must be granted before changes to the embankment can begin.

A pruning or clearing management plan must fully protect both land-based animal species and aquatic species with oversight from state and local agencies. Experts should be consulted regarding appropriate management plan details.

The Natural Heritage and Endangered Species Program (NHESP) protects endangered species and their habitat

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR ANALYSIS

17


V E G E TAT I O N

Key Map 20 2

LOG POND

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LEGEND Overgrown Vegetation Canals and River

SYLVIA LANE PARK

Parks and Open Space W AY

PUMP STATION

AR B

OR

MITCHELL FIELD

SA I

ET RE ST E

PD

ST

EN

ST

RE

DR

Pulaski Park’s

IV E

embankment is overgrown

ET

PULASKI PARK

species, of uniform age

RE ST LE

T UR RE

RE ST NT

ET

Pulaski Park’s river views. EET ET RE

MAIN

ST

STR

RE ST E HOLYOKE HERITAGE STATE PARK

RA CE

ST RE ET

HE RI TA G

CO

UR T

PL AZ

A

ET

Data Source: Mass GIS, Public Input

Parks Analysis Vigorous andCORRIDOR rapidlyMAP spreading invasive vine and tree species blanket Pulaski Park’s embankment. Asiatic bittersweet (Celastrus orbiculatus), Japanese CONWAY SCHOOL OF LANDSCAPE DESIGN knotweed (Polygonum cuspidatum), Norway maple (Acer platanoides), black locust (Robinia pseudoacacia), and tree of heaven (Ailanthus altissima) choke out competition. 0

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Legend

Karen Dunn I Kate Tompkins I Malena Maiz

March 09, 2011

332 South Deerfield Rd. Conway, MA 01341 Holyoke@csld.edu

°

The park’s property line borders the railings along the northern edge; the slope leading from the park to the river is owned by the Norfolk and Southern Railroad. Clearing or pruning vegetation on the railroad rightof-way historically kept open a broad view to the Connecticut River and Mt. Tom. Maintenance on the bank ceased sometime after the 1950s; overgrown vegetation is mostly of the same age with very limited species variety. The view from much of the park is now blocked by the height and density of the invading vegetation.

IMPLICATIONS

18

The vegetation blocks

FR O

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and limited wildlife value.

AP

VETERANS PARK

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

with aggressive invasive

KOSCIUSZKO PARK

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KOREAN VETERANS MEMORIAL PLAZA

EX

E

ST

E

AP P

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RE

LB

M

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ET

RE

RE

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AV E

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FO

NU

AS E

KO

ET

JARDIN CIUDAD VERDE

CH

AN

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HA M

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OA

CH

K

ST

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AVERY FIELD

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DEAN PARK

All of the invasive vine and tree species identified

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

above are aggressive spreaders that exclude other plants from establishing nearby without significant intervention. Parks Constrains

Holyoke City Limits Holyoke Building Footprints

Greater diversity of plants supports greater diversity of animals and insects. The extreme uniformity of the invasive plant species occupying the embankment at Pulaski Park (more than 75 percent of the trees are Norway maple) reduces its value to wildlife.

Controlling invasives in order to reestablish native species is supported by the NHESP. Lower-growing, native shrubs that form dense root networks offer superior bank stabilization, increased food for wildlife, and multi-season visual interest. More specific information on these plants and bank stabilization are presented in the Toolkit section (page 54).

Interest among park visitors and area residents in restoring the scenic views must be aligned with regulatory interest in protecting the Connecticut River and preserving the tree cover on the embankment.

Lakes and Rivers

Parks and Open Space


A’ A Key Map

SECTION A-A’ (Not to scale)

The section shows Pulaski Park looking northwest. The overgrowth of invasive species that has colonized the hillside in less than fifty years can be seen in proportion to the park, and precludes views to the river.

Overgrown vegetation along the promenade blocks views to the dam.

El sobrecrecimiento de alta vegetación a través del corredor bloquea las vistas a la presa.

Asiatic bittersweet chokes out native vegetation.

Asiatic bittersweet mata a la vegetación nativa.

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR ANALYSIS

19


VIEWS

Key Map 20 2

LOG POND

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LEGEND Obstructed Views Canals and River SYLVIA LANE PARK

Parks and Open Space W AY

PUMP STATION

AR B

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MITCHELL FIELD

SA I

ET RE ST

HA M

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PD

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IV E

Scenic views of

ET

nearby natural and

KOSCIUSZKO PARK PULASKI PARK

RE ST LE

T UR

ST

ET RE ST NT

FR O

N

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CO T

CO

ES ET

T

W RE

ET

ST

RE

blocked and Pulaski Park

ET

RE

struggles to regain vitality. EET ET RE ST

MAIN

STR

RE ST E

HOLYOKE HERITAGE STATE PARK

RA CE

ST RE ET

HE RI TA G

CO

UR T

PL AZ

A

ET

Data Source: Mass GIS, Public Input

Parks Analysis Pulaski Park was born as a promenade park where CORRIDOR MAP people could escape the close quarters of an industrial city byCONWAY enjoying the sweeping mountain and river views. SCHOOL OF LANDSCAPE DESIGN ° For more than fifty years it was known as Prospect Park because its entire northern border was open to the Connecticut River, providing visual access from Mt. Tom across to the industrial pride of the city, the Holyoke Dam. 0

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Karen Dunn I Kate Tompkins I Malena Maiz

Legend

Holyoke@csld.edu

Park visitors also enjoyed long views into the city from the six broad streets that terminated at the interior edge of Pulaski Park. These urban vistas extended several blocks, highlighting the activity and bustle of the city and its people. The exchange between the natural views on the north side and the urban views to the south of the park was unique in Holyoke.

IMPLICATIONS The majestic natural views that offered relief from urban conditions have been blocked by overgrown

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

vegetation. From Pulaski Park today, the river, the mountain range, and the nearby Holyoke Dam are almost totally obscured. Obscured View

March 09, 2011

332 South Deerfield Rd. Conway, MA 01341

20

park; today the views are

ST HI GH

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CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

industrial features once distinguished this urban

EL M

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JARDIN CIUDAD VERDE

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AVERY FIELD

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DEAN PARK

Holyoke City Limits Holyoke Building Footprints

Development blocks the city views that once connected Pulaski Park to its neighbors.

Without the views, Pulaski Park’s vitality is challenged by its undefined purpose in the urban neighborhood that surrounds it.

Lakes and Rivers

Parks and Open Space


2011

Courtesy of Friends of Pulaski Park

Courtesy of Friends of Pulaski Park

1907

Obstructed views from Pulaski Park The scenery that once inspired the park’s creation has been obscured by overgrown vegetation on the river embankment.

Vista bloqueada desde el Parque Pulaski El escenario que alguna vez inspiro la creación del parque, ahora bloqueado por la falta de mantenimiento en la cuenca.

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR ANALYSIS

21


A C C E S S A N D C I R C U L AT I O N

Key Map

20 2

LOG POND

RO

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CITY BEACH

LEGEND Missing gateways for Pulaski Park, Avery Field, and Mitchell Field SYLVIA LANE PARK

Cul-de-sacs PUMP STATION W AY

Canals and River

OR

MITCHELL FIELD

AR B

Parks and Open Space SA I

ET RE ST

HA M

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PD

EN

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IV E

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KOSCIUSZKO PARK PULASKI PARK

Absence of gateways

RE ST LE

T UR

ET RE ST NT

locals and visitors alike.

ET

RE

RE

Parks Analysis GATEWAYS CORRIDOR MAP

EET ET RE ST

MAIN

STR

RE ST E

HOLYOKE HERITAGE STATE PARK

RA CE

ST RE ET

HE RI TA G

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PL AZ

A

ET

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

Data Source: Mass GIS, Public Input

0

0.025

0.05

0.1

Pulaski Park, Avery Field, and Mitchell Field lack CONWAY SCHOOL OF LANDSCAPE DESIGN entrance gateways and signs. Some area residents enjoy Avery Field’s playground without ever knowing the name of the park. Many people working within the downtown area or driving through the immediate neighborhood are unaware of Pulaski Park’s existence.

0.15

March 09, 2011

332 South Deerfield Rd. Conway, MA 01341 Holyoke@csld.edu

°

IMPLICATIONS •

Without obvious gateways, potential users are confused and cautious entering the parks.

Unsigned dead-end public streets leading to Pulaski Park appear to be private, discouraging people from exploring it.

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

Miles 0.2

Eastern Entrance to St. Kolbe Drive, Pulaski Park’s Access Road No gateways or signs announce Pulaski Park to drivers and passersby in the neighborhood. Located just behind the apartment complex, the park is invisible from the entrance to its access road and parking lot. Legend

Karen Dunn I Kate Tompkins I Malena Maiz

22

and use of the parks by

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discourages exploration

AP

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DW

KOREAN VETERANS MEMORIAL PLAZA EX

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ET

VETERANS PARK

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ET

RE

NU

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JARDIN CIUDAD VERDE

FO

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Parks Constrains

Holyoke City Limits

Holyoke Building Footprints Lakes and Rivers

Parks and Open Space

Entrada este por la Calle Kolbe, calle de acceso al Parque Pulaski Ningún anuncio o señalamiento indicando la presencia del Parque Pulaski para los peatones o conductores de automóviles. No hay visibilidad hacia el parque desde la entrada hasta el estacionamiento.


Key Map

Private housing has enclosed Pulaski Park, isolating it from the neighborhood. Original Street Pattern in Downtown/Prospect Heights Multiple terminal vistas once brought people to Pulaski Park from many points in the city. The sight line along each of these avenues would have looked across the width of the park to the scenery across the river.

PRIVATIZATION AND VISIBILITY Redevelopment in the 1970s disconnected the historical grid pattern and promenade drive of Pulaski Park, concealing it behind suburban style private housing and cul-de-sacs. The buildings located along the park’s southern edge block the long views into the city that once began there.

IMPLICATIONS Current Street Pattern in Downtown/Prospect Heights The original streets were filled in with private development and the only two that remain were converted to cul-de-sacs, creating the impression that they are private roads.

Reconfiguration of the street pattern created deadend streets that isolate Pulaski Park from all but its most immediate neighbors.

Private development hides the park. Security in Pulaski Park now depends on the presence and actions of private property owners rather than public exposure to the city.

The Original and Current Street Patterns Overlaid This overlay shows how the multiple terminal vistas that once drew many people to the park are now concealed behind a ring of privatization.

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR ANALYSIS

23


Key Map 20 2

LOG POND

RO UTE 2

02

RO

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CITY BEACH

SYLVIA LANE PARK

1

W AY

PUMP STATION

AR B ST RE ET

SA I

ST

J "

ST RE ET

T UR

ET RE

oriented transit within the

ST RE ET

NT

ST

street grid. Parking is a

FR O RE

ET

challenge at all the parks, ET

J " ST RA CE

especially in the rotary near Mitchell Field.

Data Source: Mass GIS, Mass DOT, PVTA, Google Earth, Public Input

TRANSPORTATION ANALYSIS

STREET TRAFFIC CORRIDOR MAP

UR T

CO T

CO

ES ST

T

W N

LY M AN

EET

DW IG HT

HI GH

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

are threatened by auto-

RE

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JO H

EA S

RE ST HI GH ST RE ET

ST RE ET

ST RE ET

HOLYOKE HERITAGE STATE PARK

ST RE ET

5

RE ET

EN

KOREAN VETERANS MEMORIAL PLAZA

AP PL ET ON

Pedestrians and bicyclists

PULASKI PARK

ST

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MA PL E

RE ST

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J "

4

UT

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HA MP D

CO UR T PL HE AZ RI A TA GE ST RE ET

ST RE ET

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3

VETERANS PARK

ST

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ES TN

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Bus stops

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No crosswalks

IV E

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Traffic Direction KO

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PI NE

DEAN PARK

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MITCHELL FIELD

LEGEND 1 Mitchell Field isolated by the rotary at Route 202 2 Unclear access to Avery Field from Oak St. 3 Blind intersection at High and Lyman Streets 4 Busy intersection at Dwight and Maple Streets 5 Pulaski Parking Area

0

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IMPLICATIONS

Miles 0.2

Legend

Holyoke’s historical street grid provided a functional CONWAY SCHOOL OF LANDSCAPE DESIGN multimodal transportation system in the late 1800s, ° incorporating bicyclists, private carriages, public transit carriages drawn along rail lines, early automobiles, and broad sidewalks for pedestrians. Today heavy vehicular traffic and one-way streets that increase motorist speed dominate Center City. Pulaski Park has insufficient, concealed, and unevenly distributed parking; both Avery Field and Mitchell Field have no parking despite their seasonal popularity. The buses that bring students to Mitchell Field from across the river exacerbate the parking problem. Pedestrians must navigate blind corners, inadequate snow removal, short crossing cycles at busy intersections, narrowed sidewalks, and misaligned or missing crosswalks. Karen Dunn I Kate Tompkins I Malena Maiz

MARCH 09, 2011

Bus Stops

Traffic Direction No Crosswalks

Lakes and Rivers

Parks and Open Space

Holyoke@csld.edu

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

Motorists speed through neighborhood streets, posing a danger to pedestrians and bicyclists alike. Street Traffic

332 South Deerfield Rd. Conway, MA 01341

24

J "

The absence of bicycle facilities impedes alternatives to motorized travel.

Lack of parking and access to Mitchell Field compromises safety for both pedestrians and motorists. In season, vehicles are parked within the rotary, creating hazardous conditions.

Pedestrians are constantly exposed to an autocentered transportation system, hindering connectivity to home, workplace, and leisure activities.


Lyman Street Inadequate snow removal creates dangerous conditions for pedestrians. Calle Lyman Mantenimiento inadecuado de la retirada de nieve crea condiciones peligrosas para los peatones.

Traffic Through the Route 202 Rotary Vehicles seasonally park along the inside of the rotary to access Mitchell Field. Parking and exiting traffic form a hazard to crossing pedestrians and other motorists. Tráfico en la rotonda 202 Las personas son expuestas a altos riesgos de trafico ya que se estacionan en la rotonda para hacer uso de los campos de béisbol.

Blind Intersection at Lyman and High Streets Pedestrians crossing Lyman Street at the corner of High Street, in the main business district, cannot be seen or see down the hill toward the canals. Intersección ciega en las calles Lyman y High Peatones cruzando la calle Lyman, esquina con la calle High, no son visualizados por los conductores y viceversa.

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR ANALYSIS

25


Key Map 20 2

LOG POND

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SYLVIA LANE PARK

LEGEND Illegal access to river through water pump-house Misaligned fence gates Railroad tracks

W AY

PUMP STATION

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MITCHELL FIELD

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Physical barriers prevent

KOSCIUSZKO PARK PULASKI PARK

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people from accessing the

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CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

ST R

EET RE

Data Source: Mass GIS, Public Input

Parks Analysis

BARRIERS CORRIDOR TO THE PARKS MAP

ST

HOLYOKE HERITAGE STATE PARK

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parks and the river.

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Universal access is impaired by steep hills and grade CONWAY SCHOOL OF LANDSCAPE DESIGN changes along the roads and sidewalks, and by stairs ° and gaps in paved surfaces within the parks. Broken and misaligned gates at the entrances to Mitchell and Avery Fields limit access to the ball fields and playground. Karen Dunn I Kate Tompkins I Malena Maiz

March 09, 2011

332 South Deerfield Rd. Conway, MA 01341

Miles 0.2

Railroad traffic will increase as regular passenger service is reinstated and pose greater threat to those attempting to cross the tracks.

Legend

Parks Constrains

Lakes and Rivers Parks and Open Space Rail Road

Holyoke@csld.edu

Two rail lines form a hazardous barrier and impede access to the river along the entire length of the Downtown/Prospect Heights neighborhood. The utility company’s water pump-house property at the western end of Pulaski Park is sometimes used to illegally cross the railroad tracks and access the river.

IMPLICATIONS

26

Limited universal access to the parks may exclude people with disabilities or parents with strollers.

Impaired entrance gates may discourage people from using the parks.

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

People illegally access the river despite the danger of the railroad tracks.

Las personas accesan ilegalmente al río a pesar de el peligro que representan las vías del tren.


FA C I L I T I E S

Key Map 20 2

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Persistent vandalism and

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removal of several

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CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

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LEGEND Tennis courts (removed) Old swings Pulaski restrooms (removed) Remaining Olmsted paths Bocce Benches and game tables Swimming pool (removed) Splash park Basketball court Volleyball court Baseball field Baseball field Vandalized playground equipment Basketball court

facilities at Pulaski Park in the last five years.

Data Source: Mass GIS, Public Input

Parks Analysis Pulaski Park has recently lost several important facilities CORRIDOR MAP to lack of maintenance and stewardship. Public restrooms screened undesirable CONWAY SCHOOL OF LANDSCAPE DESIGN activities and were removed for security. Tennis courts were demolished° because their condition had severely deteriorated; a community pool that welcomed 300-500 children a day in the summer was closed at the state’s request due to its poor condition. 0

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Karen Dunn I Kate Tompkins I Malena Maiz

March 09, 2011

332 South Deerfield Rd. Conway, MA 01341 Holyoke@csld.edu

Heavy use does not guarantee that facilities will be maintained. Legend

New facilities may be exposed to vandalism and inadequate maintenance, shortening their life span. Facilities

Lakes and Rivers

Parks and Open Space

Avery Field’s playground equipment remains operational but suffers persistent minor vandalism. Basketball courts in both parks need resurfacing. The gates at Avery Field and Mitchell Field are broken. Some of the benches and game tables at Pulaski Park are rotting and unstable.

IMPLICATIONS •

Lack of funding and maintenance costs have contributed to the decline of programming in the parks. Facilities are removed and not replaced.

Security concerns required removal of public restrooms.

Sitio donde los baños públicos fueron retirados por razones de seguridad.

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR ANALYSIS

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neighborhood use.

Data Source: Mass GIS, Public Input

Analysis The usersParks of Pulaski Park (1) and Avery Field (3) are CORRIDOR MAP quite different than those of Mitchell Field (2), which is predominantly a drive-to destination for organized SCHOOL OF LANDSCAPE DESIGN adultCONWAY baseball teams who rent the field from the Parks and Recreation Department. Parking poses a serious challenge for these recreational commuters, who often park inside the rotary and create traffic hazards to those moving through the road system. Mitchell Field is also the home field of the Holyoke Catholic High School, which no longer operates out of its original location off Veterans Park in Holyoke. Players are bused in from the school’s new location in Chicopee, across the Connecticut River. 0

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Karen Dunn I Kate Tompkins I Malena Maiz

March 09, 2011

332 South Deerfield Rd. Conway, MA 01341 Holyoke@csld.edu

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Avery Field is surrounded by historical row houses. The youth baseball field sees regular use in season by school and youth teams. Except for this ball field, the park is generally used by the neighborhood residents. Two half-basketball courts and playground equipment for children ages five through twelve cluster at the Oak Street entrance on the southwestern end of the park, tucked into the neighborhood and away from the rotary traffic.

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LEGEND Pulaski Park Mitchell Field Avery Field Edgewater Gardens Condos Pope John Paul II Social Center Mater Dolorosa School Prospect Heights Senior Housing Pulaski Heights Senior Housing Echo Hill Apartments Lyman Terrace Neighborhood

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

Pulaski Park also sees regular use by its neighbors, many walking to the park from their homes or businesses. Along the western perimeter, low-rise luxury condos (4) overlook a flat, grassy section of the park and surround its northern street entrance, Arbor Way. The 108-unit complex rims much of Pulaski Park’s southern boundary, though only two of the thirteen buildings flanking the park enjoy any significant views. A new bocce court was recently installed and good lighting from street lamps illuminate the western third of the park. Many of the condo owners walk their dogs in the park.

Miles 0.2

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The Mater Dolorosa Catholic School (6) abuts most of the middle area of Pulaski Park, near the Olmsted paths. The school’s 260 students, kindergarten through eighth grade, enjoy recess in the park each day. Snow cover relocates the students to the pavement of the nearby street. The Pope John Paul II Social and Educational Center (5) regularly hosts community activities but guests rarely use the park. Weekend school events and fundraisers have moved indoors in recent years. The park’s second entrance is at the Maple Street cul-de-sac


in front of the school.

Dog walkers and residents of the apartments and condos visit the park in early morning and evening. Pulaski Park enjoys greater safety than some other Holyoke public parks, in part because of the number of visitors and their even presence throughout the day.

Nearby public housing residents find access to Pulaski Park challenging in spite of its proximity. Additional obstacles for this population include poor lighting and no visibility from the street into the closest end of the park, and social isolation that subtly discourages participation in the park’s programming.

Market rate apartments (9) abut the eastern end of Pulaski Park. Up to 20 percent of these rental units are designated for affordable housing. Two senior housing towers (7, 8) are situated within a block of Pulaski Park and the seniors make up one of the largest user groups. Their presence in the park during business hours, normally a period of lower use in parks, is a significant asset. A block of public housing (10), the fifth oldest complex in the nation, is home to more than 300 adults and children less than one mile from Pulaski Park. Of predominantly Puerto Rican heritage, the residents of Lyman Terrace do not use Pulaski Park as often as their location would suggest. Ethnic and economic differences isolate Lyman Terrace from the larger neighborhood; other nearby parks that are easier to reach and have more programming are more popular. Additionally, lack of lighting at the eastern end of Pulaski Park (closest to the complex), seclusion from the main street, and indirect pedestrian access across Lyman Street make visitors cautious. In spite of these obstacles, Lyman Terrace residents report that they seasonally organize tournaments at the volleyball court and take children to the playground equipment. The new splash park, which replaced the extremely popular community pool at the southern end of Pulaski Park, continues to be a favorite destination for this group in the summer. Employees in nearby businesses in the canal district and on High Street also find their way to the park for lunch on fine days.

Local residents stroll along Pulaski Park’s broad paths.

Los residentes del vecindario pasean por los amplios caminos del parque Pulaski.

This mural at Lyman Terrace was painted by youth members of the Boys & Girls Club.

Este mural fue pintado por jóvenes miembros del Boys & Girls Club, Lyman Terrace.

IMPLICATIONS •

Mitchell Field draws a very different pool of users than the other parks. Its commuting patrons struggle to find adequate parking and unintentionally pose hazards to pedestrians and neighborhood residents.

Avery Field and Pulaski Park provide recreational facilities for a variety of ethnicities, incomes, ages, and recreational uses from within their immediate neighborhoods. Many patrons walk to the parks.

Seniors and school children visit Pulaski Park during business hours, a time period when public parks are often empty. They represent an active group of “eyes in the park.”

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR ANALYSIS

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S U MMA RY A NA LYS I S •

Many of the social, ecological, and physical systems in the Corridor are fragments that are connected by proximity but divided by conflicting conditions.

A spine of rugged hills rises abruptly to the west of Holyoke’s urbanized river valley. Steep slopes historically concentrated development in the flat, downtown area.

Impervious surfaces, antiquated stormwater infrastructure, and a steep slope on Pulaski Park’s banks channel surface runoff to the river without filtration.

The Wetlands Protection Act protects fragile riparian corridors and endangered species. It applies to most of Pulaski Park and the entire embankment to the river.

The hillside is overgrown with aggressive invasive species, of uniform age and limited wildlife value, which block Pulaski Park’s river views.

Scenic views of nearby natural and industrial features once distinguished Pulaski Park; without them this urban greenspace struggles to regain vitality.

Persistent vandalism and inadequate resources for maintenance have resulted in facilities being removed from Pulaski Park in the last five years.

Absence of gateways discourages exploration and use of the parks by locals and visitors alike. Private housing has enclosed Pulaski Park, isolating it from the neighborhood. Physical barriers prevent people from accessing the parks and the river.

Pedestrians and bicyclists are threatened by auto-oriented transit within the street grid. Parking is a challenge at all the parks, especially in the rotary near Mitchell Field.

While Mitchell Field is primarily used by those commuting from other locations, Pulaski Park and Avery Field see heavy neighborhood use. Diverse populations enjoy the parks throughout the day.

While still claiming it’s prominent position above the Connecticut River and Holyoke Dam, Pulaski Park has lost much of its identity and function due to isolation and neglect.

Avery Field Mitchell Field

Bing.com Maps

Pulaski Park

Aerial Image of the Pulaski Park Corridor

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Imágen aerea del Corredor Parque Pulaski

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR analysis


Vision: Beyond the Gateway “We want a ground to which people may easily go when the day’s work is done, and where they may stroll for an hour, seeing, hearing, and feeling nothing of the bustle and jar of the streets where they shall, in effect, find the city put far away from them...” Frederick Law Olmsted, 1870 Best known for his collaborative design of Central Park in New York City, Frederick Law Olmsted shaped the field of landscape architecture in America. Writer, engineer, and visionary, he became a driving force behind many of our urban parks. His work and philosophy inspired the vision of what Holyoke’s Pulaski Park can be. Like sentinels of a sanctuary, reclaimed granite blocks, stacked vertically, welcome visitors at the threshold of Pulaski Park. The stones are remnants from the canal excavation and an era of industrial prosperity more than a century ago. As you walk through the gateway, the gently sloping path in the park draws you to the overlook and a low rumble generates curiosity. Closer now, the rumble is in concert with the cascading river. As you near the end of the path, streaks of foaming blue water emerge through the trees below. On this spring morning, limbs still bare but full of promise of a lush green future, frame the river’s expansive banks and the vista of the Mt. Tom Range. Mist rising from the river bends the sunlight creating rainbows above the dam. Cool moist air sweeps upward from the river, caressing your skin. The river is your companion as you continue on your way.

Pulaski Park’s Promenade

The park is alive with activity this morning as an alternative to autos on busy streets. Commuters walking along the promenade enjoy the view to and from work. The passenger railway, rolling south by the river’s edge, offers visitors to the park a glimpse of travelers riding to work. Joggers welcome the tree-lined trails linking the historical mill district to the east end of the park. Neighborhood residents have little need for a car. Students from the nearby school scramble through double metal doors, spilling into the park’s lawn and gardens. Pulaski Park, a venue for both outdoor enjoyment and scientific exploration, converts to an open-air classroom connecting urban and natural systems. No longer hidden from view, the river receives the recognition it deserves. The young stewards care for the park’s rain gardens that slow erosion, retain stormwater, and filter pollutants. Open space will always be a vital ingredient in the lives of Pulaski Park’s neighbors. Not unlike other urban areas, Holyoke’s Center City has diverse populations that have particular needs—senior citizens with limited mobility, young families and professionals growing with the renewed promise of the city, ethnic minorities and new immigrants isolated from the political process, entrepreneurs revitalizing the heart of downtown, single parents struggling to make ends meet, and people with disabilities, restricted by physical barriers. The park provides refuge and a place where these diverse populations interact on common ground.

El Malecón del Parque Pulaski

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR VISION: BEYOND THE GATEWAY

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Design Concepts DE M O C R AT I C PA RKS

concepts emerged in response to these opportunities for reconnection.

The Olmsted Brothers’ design from more than a century ago gives Pulaski Park special historical significance. Today the park lies at the intersection between Frederick Law Olmsted’s legacy of democratic parks and Holyoke’s diverse population.

Early Successes are small first steps, often inexpensive, that can be rapidly executed. These simple measures give a community the opportunity to celebrate a quick victory. The celebration can awaken interest and commitment in new people who join the group and recruit others, creating the necessary momentum for more costly measures.

Selected elements of the redesign were implemented in what was then called Prospect Park. Many of the original Olmsted Brothers features are now lost to time and lack of maintenance; today only the pathways and balustrades remain. While the designs did not last, a more important inheritance is still reflected in a name: Prospect Park was changed to Pulaski Park to be more inclusive to the large Polish population that grew around the park. Frederick Law Olmsted would have been satisfied with this legacy of response to changing demographics. To Frederick Law Olmsted, parks did not function simply as destinations; they were means to a greater end. They offered psychological relief from the crowded and hectic conditions of industrialized cities, a chance to escape to soothing and healthy natural landscapes. Olmsted understood that as the sole relievers of city life, parks also served as vessels for social advancement: places for people to gather and greet one another, to exchange ideas—to experience both psychological refreshment and social welcome. His deeply held, democratic belief was that all people, regardless of income, ethnicity, or situation, should have equal opportunity to experience the landscape connections and human exchanges that a public park facilitates.

Translating that momentum into a long-term strategy must incorporate sustained dialogue with the community. Neighborhoods fluctuate, people move, and cities change, while the fortunes of public parks rest on continued support and interest. Sustained dialogue with the community will empower newcomers to get involved and retain commitment from permanent residents. Pulaski Park is deeply anchored in this tradition of community exchange, going back to a redesign by the Olmsted Brothers in 1907, and its continued vitality depends on it to keep the park relevant and welcoming into the future.

Holyoke’s diverse ethnicities need democratic parks just as much today as one hundred years ago. While physical and social conditions in their own neighborhoods conspire to keep people separated, public parks and the community dialogue they inspire can serve as a vehicle for bringing them together. Even as parks depend on continued interest and support from the community, they in return can offer democratic welcome to Holyoke’s widely diverse populations.

CO MMUNI T Y E XC HA NG E Analysis of existing environmental, social, and physical conditions revealed the barriers that keep the residents of Downtown/Prospect Heights apart. It has also uncovered rich opportunities to reconnect the people to their parks, neighborhoods, and the ecological community just over the embankment. Two key

The Annual Saint Patrick’s Day Road Race celebrates an Irish holiday but brings together the multicultural diversity of Holyoke.

La carrera anual Saint Patrick´s Day Road Race celebra un día festivo irlandés, pero a su vez muestra la diversidad cultural de la ciudad de Holyoke.

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR Design concepts

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CASE STUDIES opportunity for businesses, neighborhood associations, churches, schools, civic clubs and other organizations to take “ownership” of a park, greenway, or recreation center. The Ambassadors adopt a specific property or facility and act as the “eyes and ears” of their communities. Groups commit to a supervised project each month and/or perform weekly unsupervised walks through a facility for clean-up and light maintenance. The County posts a sign in the adoption area specifying the group that has volunteered.

PARK AMBASSADOR PROGRAMVOLUNTEERS IN THE PARK (VIP) MECKLENBURG COUNTY PARK AND RECREATION CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA The Mecklenburg County Park & Recreation Department is home to 210 parks and facilities located on more than 17,600 acres of parkland throughout Mecklenburg County, North Carolina. Parks in the county come in all shapes and sizes ranging from small neighborhood parks to large district parks. The City of Charlotte (Mecklenburg’s county seat) and the six smaller towns of Davidson, Cornelius, Huntersville, Pineville, Matthews, and Mint Hill all contribute resources to further the Park and Recreation Department’s success.

Other volunteer opportunities include periodic projects. This is the option for a group or organization that wants to come out on a regular basis but cannot commit to a monthly project. There are also unsupervised group projects ideal for neighborhood associations, scouts, schools, summer camps and churches. Groups come out on their own to do trash pickups and light park maintenance. On foot or bike, Park Ambassadors, as representatives of the department, greet patrons, answer questions and support staff when needed. They assist with programs, maintenance, safety and operations in many parks and nature preserves. Volunteers monitor and report back to staff information on the parks, trails, and greenways. All Park Ambassadors must commit to at least six months and go through Park Ambassador Orientation.

Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation’s volunteer effort started in 2004 with just 100 volunteers willing to pick up trash in local parks. Today, the program has expanded to over 16,000 doing work ranging from planting flowers to serving at special Park and Rec events to being Park Ambassadors. Mecklenburg County, like so many other government entities, faces historic budget shortfalls. Park and Recreation is hit especially hard. With less staff and the same number of parks, programs and centers to run and maintain, employees are overtaxed trying to provide basic services.

The volunteer work is meant to supplement the efforts of full-time Park and Recreation employees. Collaborating with local groups, schools, and organizations has paid off in a big way for Mecklenburg County. Last year, volunteers spent 100,000 hours doing County projects. That time is valued at over $2 million according to the Points of Light Foundation.

The Park Ambassador Program was developed for individuals, and groups who take pride in their neighborhood parks and recreation centers to rally together to provide the same high quality of service and dedication that the community has known for decades.

The Park Ambassador adoption program offers an

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CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

Mecklenburg County, NC Park and Recreation

Mecklenburg County’s Park Ambassador Program’s main objective is to recruit, train and empower local residents 18 and older by allowing them to serve as Park Ambassadors for their communities. The program provides an avenue for volunteering to individuals and groups that wish to “give back” to the community. Families may also act as Park Ambassadors, however all youth under the age of 18 must be accompanied by adults at all times. Volunteers are a visible presence in their respective neighborhood parks providing helpful information about the parks to their neighbors and friends, and also relaying any concerns or problems in the parks to park officials.

The City of Holyoke, like so many municipalities, has experienced drastic budget cuts and struggles to provide quality recreation programs and facilities for its residents. A Park Ambassador Program may be a way to rally individuals, families, and organizations to take pride in their community and be part of the Center City revitalization. Volunteers perform weekly clean-up and maintenance in the park. Voluntarios realizan labores de limpieza y mantenimiento en el parque cada semana.


CANAL NEST COLONY GOWANUS CANAL, BROOKLYN NY In the heart of some of Brooklyn’s most populous neighborhoods, a neglected and polluted resource went unnoticed for decades. The smell from the Gowanus Canal was tremendous. Nature had long ago been extirpated from this 1.8-mile watercourse. Brooklyn grew up around it, enclosing it first with a village, then industry and business, and finally outer rings of working-class neighborhoods. Salt flats and a small creek that mixed with the salt water in New York Harbor were the area’s chief recommendations to both the native population and early Dutch colonists. Oysters of fabulous size were harvested in quantity and shipped back to the old world.

Truck distribution began to dominate shipping and the Gowanus Canal fell on hard times. Many properties went vacant and dredging the canal was discontinued as cost ineffective. The tunnel ceased operation and was abandoned for almost forty years. The 1970s saw things beginning to turn around for the canal and its neighborhood. A wastewater treatment plant removes the raw sewage except in times of excessive rain, when the combined sewer overflows still mix rainwater and sewage and outlet in the canal. The tunnel was reactivated and now renews the water in the canal several times a day, but the sediments at the bottom are toxic. The site was recently designated a Superfund site and is now eligible for federal clean-up money and legal assistance. But wildlife is returning to the corridor and people often canoe and kayak along its course. It is far from fully restored, but stewardship among the residents is increasing as they see signs of regeneration.

urbanomnibus.net

By the mid-1800s, Brooklyn began to grow explosively. The small creek was converted by hand labor into the Gowanus Canal, and pressure to increase port capacity made the canal immediately important for docking and shipping. Factories sprang up on its banks. Soon heavy industry concentrated here, “including coal gas manufacturing plants, oil refineries, machine shops, chemical plants, a cement maker, a sulfur producer, a soap maker and a tannery.” (gowanuscanal.org) Toxic petrochemicals and heavy metals spilled directly into the canal or on the ground nearby; the working class residential neighborhoods piped raw sewage into the canal. The water became so unbearably foul that residents sometimes ironically referred to the canal as “Lavender Lake.” (gowanuscanal.org)

As Brooklyn continued to infill and property became more expensive, action was finally taken to eliminate the odor produced by the polluted waters. A long brick tunnel channeled water pushed by giant propeller out to sea through the canal’s head at the Harbor. The Flushing Tunnel was born in 1911, with much local fanfare.

Gowanus Canal, Brooklyn, NY, 2010

Canal Gowanus, Brooklyn, NY, 2010

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR DESIGN CONCEPTS

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One small example of this stewardship began in 2008 with a weekend design competition. Teams of designers and architects were given the following guidelines: the project had to be in the public interest, use found materials, and begin and end within forty-eight hours. In essence, they were asked to “make a difference in two days.” (Urban Omnibus, “Canal Nest Colony”) Team NC State won the weekend with an elegantly simple idea: birdhouses. Inexpensively made from cast off scraps and painted a bright yellow, these birdhouses are also portable and can be moved from site to site as nesting birds move each season.

Suddenly, volunteers had a wider variety of activities to engage in — bolting, painting, digging, hammering, and pouring concrete in addition to the weeding and picking up trash that dominated earlier events — and the ‘clean and green’ days ended not only with an cleaned patch of ground along the Canal, but also with the construction of something interesting.” (Urban Omnibus, “Canal Nest Colony”)

urbanomnibus.net

The following year, 2009, twenty-five bird and bat houses were built. Collaboration with the Audubon Society refined the placement of the houses. Habitat around the houses was enhanced with plantings. In the summer of 2010, partnerships expanded the program even further. A nearby lot used by the city to store salt and sand during the winter was seasonally donated to serve as an urban nursery for trees that were donated to create more habitat around the birdhouses. A new garden was installed. As the program grew, organizers began to focus on the area around the salt lot, creating a destination within the canal community.

A volunteer places a birdhouse, expanding habitat.

Un voluntario ubicando una casa para pájaros, expandiendo su habitat.

Wetland birds are considered indicators of biological health and their presence in an ecosystem is often proportionate to the functional health of the system. There is frequently a relationship between the bird community’s health and the level of human disturbance as well. (Smithsonian National Zoological Park) The high level of disturbance in and around the canal had for decades discouraged birds from nesting and feeding there. To encourage the birds to return by placing birdhouses along the canal’s edges was an act of reclamation that many in the neighborhood welcomed. The design team continued to make birdhouses even after the weekend was over. The Gowanus Canal Conservancy (GCC), an organization founded to deal with the inheritance of industry and pollution in the canal and raise awareness and participation in the community, had an opportunity. They offered the design team materials and workspace to continue building birdhouses. In exchange, the team offered them the birdhouse project “as an organizing mechanism for the community volunteer days.

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CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

Today there are more bird and bat houses and more interesting things happening in this once forgotten part of Brooklyn. The Gowanus Canal is the site of several stormwater studies and innovative reuse designs. Plans to expand habitat and birdhouses targeted more specifically toward bird species originally found near the canal continue. A simple, inexpensive idea, with community participation, has helped build a sense of pride and ownership over this once neglected but valuable resource. As the birds return, accompanied by fish and crabs colonizing the waters of this newly welcoming place, residents have the opportunity to steward the health of their own neighborhood and waterfront. The canal has begun to regenerate. Each act of regeneration confirms stewardship, which in turn encourages people to further their regeneration efforts.


SPONGE PARK GOWANUS CANAL, BROOKLYN NY Combined Sewer Overflow released into the Gowanus Canal continues to degrade water quality. The canal is considered part of the history and character of the city, but public access is limited by health concerns. There is no unified plan for the development of a publicly accessible open space system for the canal as a whole. In 2008 the dlandstudio design firm proposed a solution called Sponge Park. Sponge Park combines landscape, architectural, and engineering design strategies to improve water quality by slowing, retaining and filtering storm water. The integration of stormwater management with the city´s existing infrastructure provides recreational open space, improves water quality and reduces the high cost that splitting combined sewer systems represents for the city.

The City of Holyoke has much in common with the Gowanus Canal. The river is the reason for the city´s location. It fed the canals to provide power for industry, and today it continues to provide electricity for the city, and yet physical or visual connections are impared. For more than a century the water quality and riparian area have been compromised by an urbanized city and combined sewer discharges into the river. Project costs to reduce the combined sewer for the city are estimated at $45 million. Since 1993, when the regionally based Connecticut River Clean-up Committee was formed, the city has spent $3.3 million dollars in addressing this problem. Separating the sewer system will require time and resources, but other solutions can be implemented immediately to reduce stormwater runoff.

spongepark.org

This concept can be implemented in different cities throughout the United States, and possibly in other countries where industries and combined sewers have damaged water quality and landscapes.

Diagram of how Sponge Park remedies the combined sewer overflow.

El diagrama muestra como el Sponge Park soluciona el sistema de drenaje combinado, que en tiempo de lluvia excesiva, es evacuado al río.

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR design concepts

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Design Alternatives The design alternatives included in this chapter fall into three categories. Public process, analysis of existing conditions, interviews with residents and stakeholders, and direct observation revealed many specific points where intersection improvements, multimodal trail additions, or pedestrian infrastructure extensions would create safer and more pleasant choices for area residents. These alternatives appear on pages 40–46. Concern for the continued health of the Connecticut River figured prominently in dialogue with stakeholders and neighbors of Pulaski Park. Holyoke’s unique land formation, proximity to the river’s edge, and antiquated stormwater infrastructure prompted an alternative to address capturing and filtering stormwater before it reaches the river (found on page 47). These conversations and analyses also confirmed that there are recurring themes or types of activities that are popular across many cultures and would be appreciated by residents in the neighborhoods around Pulaski Park, Mitchell Field, and Avery Field. Three alternatives, on pages 48-50, assemble a variety of early success and longerterm options. Further study of complex traffic patterns, compliance with ADA regulations, and specific site conditions to determine optimal placement of new facilities are required. Additional information about individual parcels, parcel ownership, and agencies that need to be involved in implementing each alternative is included in the Toolkit section of this report. Amenities identified at public meetings Servicios mencionados en juntas públicas

Sculpture park Parque escultural

Rain gardens Jardines de lluvia

Food festival Festivales de comida

Traffic calming devices Medidas para calmar el tráfico

Community gardens Jardines para la comunidad

Basketball courts Canchas de basquetbol

Educational signs Señales educativas

Skateboard park Parque para patinetas

Bike racks Estante para bicicletas

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR DESIGN ALTERNATIVES

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Key Map

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Gateways will help locals identify with the parks they already use but can’t now name.

Gateways at the entrances to Pulaski Park and Avery Field will dispel confusion about public access, encouraging visitors to explore the parks and residents to feel comfortable returning to them.

Bilingual signs addressing parking, hours, and park rules invite diverse communities to use the park.

Collaboration with local artists and organizations in designing each park’s gateways could be fruitful.

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Gateways welcome neighbors and visitors to the parks by announcing them as open to everyone. A series of new gateways at intersections throughout the Pulaski Park Corridor will greet travelers, announcing the presence of this historical yet hidden park. • A sequence of gateways along major routes in and out of Center City will promote the parks to those don’t know about them.

Data Source: Mass GIS, Public Input

LEGEND Prominent intersections that lack gateways 0

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Karen Dunn I Kate Tompkins I Malena Maiz

CONWAY SCHOOL OF LANDSCAPE DESIGN

March 09, 2011

332 South Deerfield Rd. Conway, MA 01341 Holyoke@csld.edu

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Legend Gateways Holyoke City Limits Holyoke Building Footprints Lakes and Rivers Parks and Open Space

Missing gateway at Pulaski Park

Pulaski Park’s historical significance would be honored through a prestigious entrance like this one, but successful gateways do not have to be this large or formal. The scale, location, and character of each park in the study area will determine what type of gateway is appropriate.

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CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

El significado histórico del Parque Pulaski será reconocido por medio de un acceso claro, que no necesariamente debe de ser grande o formal. La escala, lugar y características de cada parque en el área de estudio determinará que tipo de acceso es apropiado.


I M P R O V I N G LY M A N A N D BEECH STREETS INTERSECTION

Busy intersections can safely accommodate alternate modes of transit without inconveniencing drivers. Increasing pedestrian access and refuge at the center of the intersection of Lyman and Beech Streets will safely connect the new multimodal trail from Pulaski Park with Avery and Mitchell Fields.

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Pedestrians and bicyclists will be protected by a central island where they can rest and wait for traffic to clear.

Crosswalks at the intersection will give both motorists and pedestrians increased visibility as vehicles approach the turn onto the busy connector to Center City.

A pedestrian activated traffic light will be installed at the Lyman Street and Beech Street intersection, allowing safe passage for pedestrians and bicyclists to continue on their way to Mitchell and Avery Fields.

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Data Source: Mass GIS, Public Input

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Legend Canalwalk Connection

CONWAY SCHOOL OF LANDSCAPE DESIGN

March 09, 2011

332 South Deerfield Rd. Conway, MA 01341

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Holyoke City Limits Holyoke Building Footprints Lakes and Rivers Parks and Open Space

Google Earth

Holyoke@csld.edu

Key Map

The railroad bridge portion of Beech Street/Route 202 immediately north of this intersection is currently in redesign. The proximity of the intersection means that it will be included in plans for the bridge. Impending construction presents an urgent opportunity to collaborate with the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (DOT) to ensure comprehensive consideration for multiple modes of transit. The proposed designs for this intersection do not provide adequate refuge and safety measures. Further review including a thorough traffic analysis and feasibility study will be required prior to implementation of proposed intersection enhancements.

Current configuration of the Lyman and Beech Streets intersection

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The new island will accommodate pedestrians and bicyclists at the Lyman Street and Beech Street/Route 202 intersection, improving motorists’ and pedestrians’ and safety.

La nueva isla peatonal provee espacio visible y seguro para peatones y ciclistas en la intersección de la calle Lyman con la ruta 202.

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR DESIGN ALTERNATIVES

41


Key Map

A NEW TRAIL

In densely developed cities, even small greenspaces can provide relief from the dominant urban landscape. An easement across city property directly adjacent to Pulaski Park will host a multimodal trail, extending the park’s western edge and forming a miniature greenway that connects to Avery and Mitchell Field.

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The three lots owned by Holyoke Gas & Electric are sparsely wooded and flat.

Any connecting path through these city lots should be located at the southern edge to avoid the hazards of the railroad tracks along the northern perimeter.

Activity will also be less concealed along the southern edge as residents of adjacent private development will partially overlook the trail.

A 10’-14’ pervious surface trail will accommodate a variety of pedestrians, bicyclists, strollers, and people with mobility devices.

An existing access road running along the southwestern edge of the park links this trail back to the neighborhood and the cul-de-sac at Arbor Way, the park’s north entrance.

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LEGEND Parks AnalysisMultimodal trail connecting Pulaski CORRIDOR MAP Park to intersection of Lyman St. and Route 202

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

Data Source: Mass GIS, Public Input

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Legend Canalwalk Connection Ped Connection

March 09, 2011

332 South Deerfield Rd. Conway, MA 01341 Holyoke@csld.edu

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Holyoke City Limits Holyoke Building Footprints Lakes and Rivers Parks and Open Space

Location of Future Multimodal Trail

A broad, wooded trail will extend Pulaski Park to the west, allowing visitors to approach Beech Street without re-entering the street grid.

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CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

Un nuevo camino para peatones y ciclistas va del Parque Pulaski a la intersección de la calle Lyman con la ruta 202. El camino va en paralelo con la reja de la propiedad privada.


Key Map

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Pedestrian-activated traffic lights and intersection improvements, such as curb bump outs and safety islands in the middle of the street, slow traffic. A new midblock crosswalk at Saint Kolbe Drive that employs these techniques will safely link the larger neighborhood, and especially the nearby residents of Lyman Terrace, to Pulaski Park. • The site of the new crosswalk will allow the more than 300 adults and children of Lyman Terrace to have direct access to the park. Currently, they cross at the intersection of Lyman and High Streets, which is one of the intersections identified in public meetings as having dangerously poor visibility.

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The location of the crosswalk also considers traffic heading northwest, which would be stopped on the Lyman Street Bridge if the light were moved closer to the canals.

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Karen Dunn I Kate Tompkins I Malena Maiz

This type of pedestrian oriented system can be implemented at intersections near other parks, around the Route 202 rotary, and throughout the city.

LEGEND Location of proposed crosswalk at Lyman Street and Saint Kolbe Drive 0

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CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

Parks Analysis

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Legend

March 09, 2011

332 South Deerfield Rd. Conway, MA 01341 Holyoke@csld.edu

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Saint Kolbe Drive and Lyman Street intersection, looking toward the canals

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A new crosswalk, equipped with pedestrian-activated traffic lights and a shelter island in the street, will invite the residents of Lyman Terrace to visit Pulaski Park more often and in greater safety.

Un nuevo paso de peatones con luz de precaución y mejoras en la intersección refuerza la seguridad del peatón en la entrada al Parque Pulaski por la calle Saint Kolbe.

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR DESIGN ALTERNATIVES

43


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The Canalwalk is the jewel of Holyoke’s revitalization efforts in the canal district; it terminates at Lyman Street, just steps from the eastern end of Pulaski Park. Two alternatives will each restore the historical connection between the park and the industrial power of Holyoke, the dam and canal system.

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The Canalwalk will extend across Lyman Street at a new crosswalk. A multimodal trail will follow the perimeter of the canal to a new entrance and gateway on the eastern edge of Pulaski Park.

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CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

Data Source: Mass GIS, Public Input

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Holyoke@csld.edu

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CONWAY SCHOOL OF LANDSCAPE DESIGN 332 South Deerfield Rd. Conway, MA 01341

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The right of way to the abandoned promenade road (Prospect Street, see map on page 23) that once ran along the interior edge of Pulaski Park will be restored. A gateway at the new entrance can serve both pedestrians entering from the neighborhood and motorists looking for parking. •

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An easement on the strip of Holyoke Gas & Electric’s property that follows the edge of the canal will extend the Canalwalk’s broad brick path.

The new gateway and road will improve visibility into Pulaski Park. A broad street entrance and increased activity will make this end of the park seem less isolated and encourage more visitors to linger and overlook the canal.

Legend Parks Assets Canalwalk Connection Holyoke City Limits Holyoke Building Footprints Lakes and Rivers Parks and Open Space

Abandoned right-of way reclaimed

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The Canalwalk will extend across Lyman Street, running along the canal’s edge to a new gateway and entrance at Pulaski Park.

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CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

Un camino a lo largo del canal extiende el Canalwalk hasta el Parque Pulaski.


Key Map

C L O S E T H E R OTA R Y

Mitchell Field and Avery Field are isolated by traffic conditions. Closing Hampden Street through the Route 202 rotary will channel traffic to alternate routes within the city, allowing the separate parks to join and function as one. •

New parking located in the reclaimed section of Hampden Street will provide much needed space for commuting ball players to leave their cars. Park visitors will enjoy safe access to either field from this narrow parking lot.

Pedestrians entering the united parks will find safe sidewalks and low speed traffic. A raised walkway across the center of the parking lot will link the two parks together, slow cars, and protect pedestrians.

Bike racks encourage alternative transportation.

New infrastructure will be ADA compliant.

Further investigation including a comprehensive traffic analysis by the Mass DOT and City of Holyoke are required.

Facilities may change or relocate within the parks after they have been unified, depending on new use patterns.

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CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

Parks Analysis CORRIDOR MAP

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Data Source: Mass GIS, Public Input

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Legend Canalwalk Connection

Karen Dunn I Kate Tompkins I Malena Maiz

Mitchell Parking

CONWAY SCHOOL OF LANDSCAPE DESIGN 332 South Deerfield Rd. Conway, MA 01341

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Holyoke@csld.edu

March 09, 2011

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Google Earth

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Proposed road closure on Hampden Street, looking northwest

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New parking and multimodal access to a connected Mitchell and Avery Field reduce conflicts between traffic and pedestrians.

Se redirige el tráfico y este espacio conecta los campos Mitchell y Avery y es dedicado a peatones, bicicletas y estacionamiento

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR DESIGN ALTERNATIVES

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Key Map

ENHANCE TRAFFIC CALMING

A combination of traffic-calming measures may immediately reduce the hazardous crossing and driving conditions in the Route 202 rotary.

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A new mid-block crosswalk will protect people crossing between Mitchell Field and Avery Field.

Flashing lights on crosswalk signs and strip lights along the edges of the crosswalk, activated by pedestrians, are highly visible in all light conditions.

Portable crosswalk signs and variable speed limit signs placed at intersections leading to the rotary will enforce speed reduction. Speed limits may be reduced before and during gametime hours, alerting motorists to pedestrian traffic.

The fence at Mitchell Field will relocate to accommodate a sidewalk that wraps around the exterior of the field, with curb cuts for ADA compliance. People crossing Beech Street will have room to safely walk around the field.

Increased police presence during ball games will enforce lowered speed.

Illegal parking within the rotary could be prevented by uniformed officers. An opportunity for shared parking with the private lot adjacent to Avery Field, at the corner of Linden and Hampden Streets, may merit further exploration.

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CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

Data Source: Mass GIS, Public Input

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CONWAY SCHOOL OF LANDSCAPE DESIGN

Legend

March 09, 2011

332 South Deerfield Rd. Conway, MA 01341 Holyoke@csld.edu

Holyoke City Limits

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Nuevo cruce peatonal, señalamientos para reducir la velocidad y carril de bicicletas.


Key Map

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Vegetated swales (shallow depressions with floodtolerant, native vegetation) will catch runoff and hold it until it infiltrates into the groundwater. Erosion on the embankment and sedimentation of the river will be reduced.

Rain gardens present many opportunities to educate Pulaski Park’s visitors about stormwater, conservation, and the importance of responsible resource management.

Low-growing plants will keep the park’s views to the mountains open while providing more privacy in different areas of the park where people sit and gather.

Gardens can offer seasonal interest, increased habitat and food for birds and other small animals, and a way for park visitors to begin to experience stewardship over the precious pieces of natural scenery that relieve the urban city.

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Pulaski Park and the adjacent city-owned properties are ideally situated to infiltrate stormwater. Rainwater gardens filter the city’s runoff, capturing stormwater before it erodes the embankment and reaches the Connecticut River. • Pulaski Park’s position between expansive impervious surfaces and above the Connecticut River is ideal for slowing and filtering the water that is headed to the river.

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CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

Data Source: Mass GIS, Public Input

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CONWAY SCHOOL OF LANDSCAPE DESIGN 332 South Deerfield Rd. Conway, MA 01341 Holyoke@csld.edu

Legend StormWater

March 09, 2011

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Holyoke City Limits Holyoke Building Footprints Lakes and Rivers Parks and Open Space

Pooling Zone 6” Detention/Filtration Zone 11/2’ Retention/Recharge Zone 1’ (Not to scale)

How Rain Gardens Work Stormwater flows into the rain garden and is temporarily held, reducing flooding. As the water moves through the soil, pollutants are filtered and removed. Some of the water evaporates, transpires through plants, is absorbed into surrounding soil. Remaining water is released through underdrains or collected in cisterns for reuse.

Como funciona un jardín de lluvia El agua de lluvia es dirigida hacia el jardín donde es retenida por cierto tiempo evitando inundaciones. Mientras el agua se desplaza por la tierra los contaminantes se filtran y se remueven. Cierto porcentaje del agua es evaporada, transpirada por las plantas y absorbida por la tierra aledaña y otra parte es dirigida a tuberías o captada para reutilizarse.

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR DESIGN ALTERNATIVES

47


M O VA B L E F E A S T

48

Picnic tables and grills will encourage outdoor socializing and recreation, and define gathering points within the open spaces of Pulaski Park. Small shelters or gazebos protect social gatherings even in inclement weather. Picnic facilities could be sited in the flat areas at the western end and at the splash park, and where large pavers are already in place under the game tables near the school.

A small farmers market will provide fresh produce and social opportunities for seniors, condo and apartment residents, and many younger families in the neighborhood. Market days would ideally complement the larger farmers market already meeting at nearby Veterans Square. The Olmstedian pathways that meet in front of the school could be a natural location for the market, where seniors and parents with strollers will have easy access.

A food festival benefits the neighborhood and attracts many area residents and visitors otherwise unfamiliar with Holyoke’s parks. Festival offerings would reflect the cultural diversity of Holyoke and celebrate the many ways that food encourages dialogue among different cultures. All of the parks in the study area have flat areas of sufficient size to accommodate a festival.

Community gardens bring generations together and highlight cultural values. Nuestras Raices has many members in the Corridor area and has expressed interest in collaboration to establish community gardens in one of the parks in the study area. Gardens need daily maintenance and irrigation; their locations will be partially determined by who in the neighborhood is willing to take on the responsibility.

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR

The North Berkeley 7th Annual Spice of Life Festival, Berkeley, CA

Septimo festival Annual Spice of Life, Berkeley, CA

Northeast picnic area, Van Buren State Park, Van Buren, OH

Area de picnic, Van Buren State Park, Van Buren, OH

Community Gardens, Danny Woo International District, Seattle, WA

Jardines para la comunidad, Distrito Internacional Danny Woo, Seattle, WA

Dustin M. Ramsey

Neighborhood picnics are easy to organize and inexpensive. Informal drop-in events offer meaningful opportunities for neighbors to get to know one another. They represent an opportunity for early success, helping a group of disconnected neighbors come together and celebrate a small victory in an act of community.

Joe Mabel

Cassie Myers

The social sharing of food is valued in many cultures. Community events centered on this exchange will nourish the cultural life of the neighborhood and attract new visitors. Partnership with the area’s largest Puerto Rican community garden and social organization will signal a new invitation to local residents.


BE A GOOD SPORT

Additional courts at the eastern of Pulaski Park end might entice the young people of nearby Lyman Terrace to come more often to Pulaski Park.

Avery Field could be partially enclosed and flooded for ice-skating in winter (this was done each winter for many years before the practice was discontinued). An alternate location might be the small hollow in the eastern end of Pulaski Park, between the Echo Hill apartments and the promenade walk.

Lawn games in Pulaski Park can foster multigeneration play. Horseshoes and croquet would be natural companions to the new bocce court that was recently installed there.

A new skateboard park will draw many teens from the neighborhood. Teens are an often overlooked and underserved population, and can become a valuable group of “eyes in the park.” Skate parks are places for them to participate in healthy activity and begin developing more complex social skills. Sitting areas around the skate park encourage people to stop and enjoy the show. Avery Field, with its row houses and urban feel, or the site of the old tennis courts at Pulaski Park (where noise will be off to the side of residential spaces) could be well suited to house a skate park.

An off-leash dog park in Pulaski Park would simultaneously provide a fun area for the many neighborhood dogs and leave the lawns clean for other activities. The area directly in front of the Edgewater Gardens condos may be an appropriate location, given the popularity of dogs in that community.

Verdugo Skate Park, Glendale, CA

Parque para Glendale, CA

patinetas,

Thornberry Dog Park, Peninsula Park, Iowa City, Iowa

Parque para perros, Parque Peninsula, Iowa City, Iowa

Ice Rink, Lincoln Park, Grand Forks, ND

Pista de hielo, Parque Lincoln, Grand Forks, ND

Iowa City Parks & Recreation

Additional seating near playground equipment at both Pulaski Park and Avery Field will form a casual place for families to gather and supervise young children playing nearby. Sitting walls, flat boulders, or just many more benches would encourage conversation among parents.

Matthew Hartman

City of Glendale, CA, Community Services & Parks

A variety of passive and active recreation choices will draw generations of users to Pulaski Park and Avery Field throughout the day. Athletics transcend many cultures and are especially embraced by the area’s Puerto Rican residents. Sports can attract teens and foster stewardship over the fields and equipment. The parks in the study area could host four-season recreation, including a fun spot for resident dogs.

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR DESIGN ALTERNATIVES

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A R T S I N T H E PA R K

A sculpture garden would capitalize on a partnership with the arts district, cross promoting with the residents of nearby apartments, condos, and senior and public housing. Sculpture installations could change seasonally or monthly, drawing people back to the park to see what is new since the last visit. The Olmsted paths near the school could provide an appropriately formal setting with easy access.

A new outdoor performance area will form a focal point for special events like summer concert series, community theater, etc. Regular evening performances will attract people from other areas who typically know Pulaski Park in the daytime, or are unfamiliar with the park. Large, open, flat spaces at the western end and a small hollow in a gentle hill at the eastern end of Pulaski Park would naturally accommodate a small concert stage or outdoor amphitheater.

Kalamazoo Nature Center, Kalamazoo, MI

Centro de Naturaleza Kalamazoo, Kalamazoo, MI

Pratt Sculpture Brooklyn, NY

Jardín Escultural Brooklyn, NY

Emily Nonko

Bilingual interpretive signs educating visitors about the history and ecological importance of Pulaski Park could open many visitors’ eyes to the proud industrial past of Holyoke. Sharing information with the community may lead to increased stewardship over the unique natural and industrial resources next door.

Garden,

Movies in the park may have many incarnations. In other cities, similar programs have successfully targeted at-risk youth and shown correlated reduction in crime and drug traffic. Independent films can draw professionals with disposable income who might not otherwise be visiting Holyoke parks. Family-friendly films might be appealing to the young families in the apartments and condos bordering the park, plus nearby residents of Lyman Terrace. Flat, grassy spaces at the east and west end of Pulaski Park may be suitable for the movie equipment. Interpretative Marker, Near Fort Howard, Baltimore County, MD

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Pratt,

William Pfingsten

Waukegan Park District

Visual and performing arts will take center stage at Pulaski Park. Music and theater performances are beloved by many cultures and can bridge differences in language and tradition. Pulaski Park, as the flagship park in the Corridor, could be the perfect location for arts and education facilities.

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR DESIGN ALTERNATIVES

Anuncio Interpretativo, Cerca de Fort Howard, Baltimore, MD


Toolkit K E Y PA R T N E R S H I P S Many organizations are already engaged in doing valuable work to sustain dialogue, educate, and increase stewardship in Holyoke. Partnerships with the neighborhoods and local organizations create a unique and special place by celebrating Holyokeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s diversity. The organizations below are key partners in making the vision of a revitalized Pulaski Park Corridor into a reality. Their missions are directly supported by the connections and facilities proposed in this publication; their stakeholders are often also groups and individuals within the Corridor. Collaboration with the following organizations can only strengthen the initiative and the communit

Holyoke Heritage State Park

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR TOOLKIT

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COMPLETE STREETS Street design always involves some of the most important and most used public spaces. This is especially true in the case of cities, where context demands broader perspectives to include the divergent needs of pedestrians, bicyclists, public transit, and motor vehicles; the streetâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s relationship to existing and future land uses; and where final design solutions connect these competing factors. Complete Streets are designed to balance safety and convenience for everyone using the road. Instituting a Complete Streets policy ensures that transportation planners and engineers design the entire right of way to be safe, comfortable and convenient for travel by all users including pedestrians, cyclists, motorists, and transit riders of all ages and all abilities. Complete Streets designs may include such features as sidewalks, bicycle lanes, transit stops, traffic calming, street trees, and intersection treatments.

www.pedbikeimages.org / Carl Sundstrom (2008) Bainbridge Island, WA Bike lane and high visibility crosswalk, ADA compliant

www.pedbikeimages.org / Eric Lowry (2009) Madison, WI Bike racks and rain garden

www.pedbikeimages.org / Dan Burden (2006) Granville, NC Radar speed sign www.pedbikeimages.org / Mike Cynecki (2009) Phoenix, AZ High visibility crosswalk and pedestrian signal

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CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR


www.pedbikeimages.org / Carl Sundstrom (2008) UniverCityâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;British Columbia, Canada On-street parking with vegetative buffer

www.pedbikeimages.org / Dan Burden (2006) Redmond, WA High visibility ADA compliant crosswalk and safety island

www.pedbikeimages.org / Dan Burden (2006) Lake Oswego, OR Street trees and broad sidewalks

www.pedbikeimages.org / Dan Burden (2006) Bellevue, WA Speed bump, high visibility crosswalk, and in-street signs

www.pedbikeimages.org / Jennifer Campos (2009) Vancouver, WA Dedicated bike lane

www.pedbikeimages.org / Dan Burden (2006) British Columbia, Canada Crosswalk with bollards

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B A N K S TA B I L I Z AT I O N Removing vegetation on steep slopes can destabilize the soil and trigger erosion. Fascines and live staking are tools used in controlling erosion with vegetation. Plants like willow that root from cut stems are cut, bundled into long rolls, and delivered within 24 hours to a stabilization site. The bundles (fascines) should lie parallel to the waters edge on the area of the stream bank that requires stabilization. The willow stems within the bundle will root and begin to grow while the fascine temporarily holds the soils underneath from erosion. Additional cut willow stems, or other similar plants, can be threaded down through the fascines and will root and begin to grow upright.

Slope Stabilization United States Environmental Protection Agency, Landscaping with Native Plants Green Landscaping: Greenacres A Source Book on Natural Landscaping for Public Officials, Chapter 4 http://www.epa.gov/greenacres/toolkit/chap4.html Stormwatercenter.net, Stream Restoration: Bank Stabilization Practices http://www.stormwatercenter.net/Assorted%20 Fact%20Sheets/Restoration/bank_stabilization.htm

Coir logs, made of biodegradable coconut fibers, can also be placed over eroding soil to prevent further movement. The logs can be inter-planted with willow or other fast rooting species, which will grow and secure the embankment as the coir fibers degrade. These innovative bioengineering techniques are used along with deeply rooted plants to hold soil on the river embankment.

Native Plant Information

Included below is short list of resources, including more detailed information about slope stabilization and native plants that would potentially be suitable for revegetating the embankment north of Pulaski Park. The Holyoke Conservation Commission can help refine the list of acceptable species for this site.

The Lady Byrd Johnson Wildflower Center at the University of Texas at Austin

United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), Natural Resources Conservation Service Plants Database http://plants.usda.gov/java/

Native Plant Database http://www.wildflower.org/plants/ International Erosion Control Association The worldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s oldest and largest association devoted to helping members solve the problems caused by erosion and its byproductâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;sediment. http://www.ieca.org/

Cross-section of live stakes

Bio-engineered streambanks utilize native plants to absorb and deflect the energy of water and to retain soil. This reduces erosion and improves water quality. Cross-section of fascines (Cord-wrapped bundles of cuttings)

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CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR


RESOURCES FEDERAL GOVERNMENT Natural Resources Conservation Service NRCS works with landowners through conservation planning and assistance to benefit the soil, water, air, plants, and animals for productive lands and healthy ecosystems. http://www.nrcs.usda.gov/ United States Census The U.S. Census counts every resident in the United States. It is mandated by Article I, Section 2 of the Constitution and takes place every 10 years. http://2010.census.gov/2010census/ United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Provides grants that fund state environmental programs, non-profits, educational institutions, and others. The grant money is used for a wide variety of projects to achieve the EPA’s overall mission to protect human health and the environment. http://www.epa.gov/

STATE GOVERNMENT Holyoke Heritage State Park http://www.mass.gov/dcr/parks/central/hhsp.htm Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife/ Natural Heritage and Endangered Species Responsible for the conservation and protection of hundreds of species that are not hunted, fished, trapped, or commercially harvested in the state. http://www.mass.gov/dfwele/dfw/nhesp/nhesp.htm Massachusetts Energy and Environmental Affairs http://www.mass.gov/ MassGIS The Commonwealth of Massachusetts’ Office of Geographic Information, a Statewide Resource for Geospatial Technology and Data http://www.mass.gov/mgis/ MassDOT Deliver excellent customer service to people who travel in the Commonwealth, and to provide our nation’s safest and most reliable transportation system in a way that strengthens our economy and quality of life. http://www.massdot.state.ma.us/main/Main.aspx

LOCAL AND REGIONAL GOVERNMENT The City of Holyoke, MA http://www.holyoke.org/

CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR toolkit

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Pioneer Valley Planning Comission Primary agency responsible for increasing communication, cooperation, and coordination among all levels of government as well as the private business and civic sectors in order to benefit the Pioneer Valley region and to improve its residents’ quality of life. http://www.pvpc.org/

NONPROFIT ORGANIZATIONS Active Living By Design Active Living By Design (ALBD) creates community-led change by working with local and national partners to build a culture of active living and healthy eating. http://www.activelivingbydesign.org/communities Boys and Girls Club of Greater Holyoke, Inc The Boys & Girls Club of Greater Holyoke serves youth between the ages of 6 and 18 in our Membership program. http://www.hbgc.org/ Center for Whole Communities The Center for Whole Communities (CWC) fosters inclusive communities that are strongly rooted in place and where all people – regardless of income, race, or background – have access to and a healthy relationship with the natural world. http://www.wholecommunities.org/index.shtml Complete Streets The National Complete Streets Coalition seeks to fundamentally transform the look, feel, and function of the roads and streets in our community, by changing the way most roads are planned, designed, and constructed. http://www.completestreets.org/ Connecticut River Watershed Council Organization works to protect the watershed along the entire length of the river, across several states. http://www.ctriver.org/index.html Enchanted Circle Theatre Is a non-profit, professional educational theater company dedicated to engaging, enhancing and inspiring learning through the arts. Enchanted Circle Theater serves an essential need in education today. http://www.enchantedcircletheater.com/ Friends of the Canalwalk Is a grass-roots, citizens advocacy organization, dedicated to supporting the Holyoke Canalwalk project, in Holyoke, Massachusetts. http://friendsofthecanalwalk.weebly.com/ Friends of Pulaski Park Friends of Pulaski Park is a park advocacy organization, dedicated to the restoration, preservation and improvement of Pulaski Park for the enjoyment of present and future generations. http://www.friendsofpulaskipark.org/ Green Streets Initiative The Green Streets Initiative is an international grassroots organization based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA that celebrates and promotes the use of sustainable, active transportation. http://www.gogreenstreets.org/

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CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR


Holyoke Food and Fitness Policy Council Is dedicated to bringing together community partners to realize its vision of comprehensive, community-driven change that enhances opportunities for children and their families to access healthy foods and physical activity. http://holyokefoodandfitness.org/ Holyoke Housing Authority To ensure the delivery and availability of decent, safe, and sanitary affordable housing as defined in compliance with all applicable federal, state and local statutes and regulations. http://www.holyokehousing.org/ Holyoke Youth Task Force Is a coalition of youth-serving non-profit agencies, city and state representatives, and community volunteers interested in creating positive opportunities and a healthier community for Holyoke youth. http://www.youthtaskforce.org/ Janeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Walks Local volunteers organize free walks to sustain dialogue in the community about issues that are unique, pressing, or urgent. Website offers support materials for uncovering areas of reduced walkability and organizing walks. http://janeswalk.net/ http://janeswalkusa.wordpress.com/ National Crime Prevention Council Numerous strategies to help neighborhoods deter crime. http://www.ncpc.org/topics/home-and-neighborhood-safety National Recreation and Park Association leading advocacy organization dedicated to the advancement of public parks and recreation opportunities. http://www.nrpa.org/ Nuestras Raices Is a grass-roots organization that promotes economic, human and community development in Holyoke, Massachusetts through projects relating to food, agriculture, and the environment. http://www.nuestras-raices.org/ Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center Is a national clearinghouse for information related to pedestrians and bicyclists. Our mission is to improve the quality of life in communities through the increase of safe walking and bicycling as a viable means of transportation and physical activity. http://www.pedbikeimages.org/ The Trustiees of Reservations http://www.thetrustees.org/ Walkable Communities Walkable Communities focuses on training and supporting the leaders that will engage town makers and town making to rebuild the worldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s most important villages, towns and cities. http://www.walkable.org/

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C O N TA C T I N F O R M AT I O N D E S I G N A LT E R N AT I V E S City of Holyoke Planning Department One Court Plaza

GATEWAYS

Holyoke, MA 01040

Holyoke Planning Department

Kathleen Anderson, Director / andersok@ci.holyoke.ma.

Holyoke Department of Public Works

Jeffrey Burkott, Principal Planner / jburkott@ci.holyoke. ma.us Karen Mendrala, Senior Planner / mendralk@ci.holyoke. ma.us Charles Murphy-Romboletti, Head Clerk / rombolettic@ ci.holyoke.ma.us

IMPROVING LYMAN AND BEECH STREET INTERSECTION Holyoke Planning Department Holyoke Department of Public Works

Telephone: (413) 322-5575 Fax: (413) 322-5576 fax

Massachusetts Department of Transportation 10 Park Plaza, Suite 3170 Boston, MA 02116

City of Holyoke Department of Public Works

Telephone: (617) 973-7000

63 Canal Street

Toll Free: 877-MA-DOT-GOV

Holyoke MA 01040

Fax: (617) 973-8031

William D. Fuqua, General Superintendent / fuquaw@ ci.holyoke.ma.us

Email Contact Form: http://www.massdot.state.ma.us/ main/MassDOTContactUs.aspx

Matthew J. Sokop, PE, City Engineer / sokopm@ ci.holyoke.ma.us

LYMAN STREET CROSSWALK

David Beaudoin, Superintendent of Outdoor Works Office Hours: 8:30 to 4:30, Monday through Friday Telephone: (413) 322-5645 Fax: (413) 539-6807

Holyoke Planning Department Holyoke Department of Public Works

CANALWALK CONTINUES

City of Holyoke Parks and Recreation Department

Holyoke Planning Department

City Hall, 536 Dwight Street

Holyoke Department of Public Works

Holyoke MA 01040 Teresa Shepard, Director / sheppart@ci.holyoke.ma.us

Holyoke Gas & Electric

Peter Leclerc, Recreation Supervisor / leclercp@ ci.holyoke.ma.us

99 Suffolk Street

Beverly Smith, Head Administrative Clerk / bevsmith@ ci.holyoke.ma.us

James M. Lavelle (Jim), Manager

Holyoke, MA 01040

Telephone: (413) 322-5620

Telephone: (413) 536-9300

Fax: (413) 322-5621

Fax: (413) 536-9315 Toll Free: (877) 742-5443 Website: http://www.hged.com/

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CONNECTING THE PULASKI PARK CORRIDOR


CLOSE THE ROTARY Holyoke Planning Department Holyoke Department of Public Works Holyoke Gas & Electric 99 Suffolk Street Holyoke, MA 01040 James M. Lavelle (Jim), Manager Telephone: (413) 536-9300 Fax: (413) 536-9315 Toll Free: (877) 742-5443 Website: http://www.hged.com/

ENHANCE TRAFFIC CALMING Holyoke Planning Department Holyoke Department of Public Works Massachusetts Department of Transportation 10 Park Plaza, Suite 3170 Boston, MA 02116

Holyoke Gas & Electric 99 Suffolk Street Holyoke, MA 01040 James M. Lavelle (Jim), Manager Telephone: (413) 536-9300 Fax: (413) 536-9315 Toll Free: (877) 742-5443 Website: http://www.hged.com/ Natural Heritage and Endangered Species Program Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife 1 Rabbit Hill Road Westborough, MA 01581 Telephone: (508) 389-6360 Fax: (508) 389-7891 Contact Information: http://www.mass.gov/dfwele/ dfw/nhesp/nhesp_staff.htm Website: http://www.mass.gov/dfwele/dfw/nhesp/ nhesp.htm

Telephone: (617) 973-7000

MOVEABLE FEAST

Toll Free: 877-MA-DOT-GOV

Holyoke Planning Department

Fax: (617) 973-8031

Holyoke Department of Public Works

Email Contact Form: http://www.massdot.state.ma.us/ main/MassDOTContactUs.aspx

STORMWATER MANAGEMENT Holyoke Planning Department

BE A GOOD SPORT Holyoke Planning Department Holyoke Department of Public Works

Holyoke Department of Public Works

ARTS IN THE PARK City of Holyoke Conservation Commission

Holyoke Planning Department

City Hall Annex, Room 412

Holyoke Department of Public Works

Holyoke MA 01040 Andrew Smith, Conservation Director Telephone: (413) 322-5616 Website: http://www.holyoke.org/

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References Executive Summary “America’s Backyard.” National Recreation and Park Association. 2011. Web. Mar 21, 2011. Google.com Maps. 2011. Web. “Holyoke’s Center City Vision Plan.” Vanasse Hangen Brustlin, Inc., Aug 2009. Web. Jan 2011. Introduction “City of Holyoke Open Space and Recreation Plan.” City of Holyoke, 2005. Web. Jan 2011. “Environmental Justice Policy.” Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs, 2011. Web. Feb 2011. “Holyoke (city), Massachusetts.” U.S. Census Bureau State & County QuickFacts, Jul 8, 2009. Web. Mar 2011. “Holyoke’s Center City Vision Plan.” Vanasse Hangen Brustlin, Inc., August 2009. Web. Jan 2011. Office of Geographic Information (MassGIS). Web. Feb 2011. Context “American Heritage Rivers.” Wikipedia.org, Sep 10, 2010. Web. Mar 2011. “Connecticut River Recreation Management Plan, 2005.” Pioneer Valley Planning Commission, 2005. Web. Jan 2011. Friends of Pulaski Park. 2006. Web. Jan 2011. “Holyoke Heritage State Park.” Department of Conservation and Recreation, n.d. Web. Jan 2011. “Holyoke, Massachusetts.” Wikipedia.org, Mar 20, 2011. Web. Mar 2011. “Holyoke’s History Page 4.” City of Holyoke, Apr 26, 2008. Web. Jan 2011. “Metacomet Ridge.” Wikipedia.org, Feb 11, 2011. Web. Mar 2011. “Olmsted’s Philosophy.” FrederickLawOlmsted.com, 2009. Web. Feb 2011. Analysis Bing.com Maps. 2011. Web. Jan 2011. Friends of Pulaski Park. 2006. Web. Jan 2011. Holyoke Conservation Commission. Invasive Species Management Plan, Pulaski Park, Holyoke, MA 01040. New England Environmental, Inc., May 13, 2009. Notice of Intent. Lu, Paul C. K. and Associates. Pulaski Park, Holyoke, MA. 1997. Print. Mount Tom (Massachusetts). Wikipedia.org, Mar 3, 2011. Web. Mar 10, 2011. Office of Geographic Information (MassGIS). Web. Feb 2011. Richards Standard Atlas of Hampden County, Massachusetts. The Sanborn Company, 1912. Map. Print. Holyoke Heritage State Park, Holyoke. Design Concepts “Canal Nest Colony.” Urban Omnibus, Sep 15, 2010. Web. Feb 2011. Fein, Albert, ed. Landscape into Cityscape: Frederick Law Olmsted’s Plans for a Greater New York City. 1968. Cornell University Press. “Frederick Law Olmsted: His Life, His Vision.” Emerald Necklace Conservancy. 2011. Web. Feb 2011. “Gowanus Canal.” Wikipedia.org, Mar 3, 2011. Web. Mar 15 2011.

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“Gowanus Canal History.” The Gowanus Dredgers Canoe Club, n.d. Web. Mar 2011. “Olmsted’s Philosophy.” FrederickLawOlmsted.com, 2009. Web. Feb 2011. “Park and Rec Volunteer Opportunities.” Mecklenburg County, NC Park and Recreation, 2011. Web. Mar 22, 2010. “Wetland Birds.” Smithsonian National Zoological Park Migratory Bird Center, n.d. Web. Mar 2011. Design Alternatives “Bowden Playground Forest Findings.” Waukegan Park District, n.d. Web. Mar 2011. Bowden Park, Waukegan, IL. “Danny Woo Garden.” InterIM, 2009. Web. Mar 2011. Google Earth. 2011. Web. Hartman, Matthew. “Sharpen Your Blades!” Flickr.com, Jan 4, 2010. Web. Mar 2011. Lincoln Park, Grand Forks, ND. Myers, Cassie. “Spice Up Your Life.” The Daily Clog, Oct 4, 2009. Web. Mar 2011. North Berkeley Seventh Annual Spice of Life Festival. Berkeley, CA. Nonko, Emily. “Clinton Hill Garden Walk this Sunday.” Brownstoner, Jun 4, 2011. Web. Mar 2011. Pratt Sculpture Garden. Clinton Hill, NY. Ramsey, Dustin M. “Van Buren State Park (Ohio).” Wikipedia.org, Mar 14, 2010. Web. Mar 2011. Van Buren, OH. “Thornberry Off-Leash Dog Park.” Iowa City Parks & Recreation, Jan 4, 2010. Web. Mar 2011. Peninsula Park, Iowa City, IA. Pfingsten, William. “Todd’s Inheritance Marker.” HMdb.org, Aug 19, 2007. Web. Mar 19, 2011. Fort Howard, MD. “Verdugo Skate Park.” City of Glendale, CA, Community Services & Parks, Jun 2, 2010. Web. Mar 2011. Toolkit “Complete Streets FAQ.” National Complete Streets Coalition, 2011. Web. Feb 2011. “Erosion Control Materials for Bioengineering and Slope Stabilization.” New England Wetland Plants, Inc., n.d. Web. Mar 23, 2011. “Image Library.” Pedestrian Bicycle Information Center, n.d. Web. Feb 2011. “Landscaping with Native Plants: A Source Book on Natural Landscaping for Public Officials, Ch 4.” United States Environmental Protection Agency, Nov 14, 2008. Web. Mar 23, 2011. “Native Plant Database.” The Lady Byrd Johnson Wildflower Center at the University of Texas at Austin, 2011. Web. Mar 23, 2011. Back Cover “America’s Backyard.” National Recreation and Park Association. 2011. Web. Mar 21, 2011.

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Connecting the Pulaski Park Corridor  

El Parque Pulaski se encuentra en la perfecta situación para ser el punto central de una de las revitalizaciones de la ciudad. Su ubicación,...

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