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We interviewed Rachael Bronson, Senior City Planner at the Denver Department of Public Works (DPW) Transportation & Mobility group. Denver is working on adding plants to an interim-design project in the city’s downtown area. Though the process and final agreements are still in process, Rachael shared the following tips for getting planters into the ground on an official city-led project: Step 1 - Partnerships: Denver DPW is working with a Business Improvement District (BID) on this project. The BID was a natural partner, because they already do work maintaining special greenery in the neighborhood in public spaces above the curb area.

The Powell Street Promenade in San Francisco, CA uses drought resistant plants to add beauty to the street (left: Union Square Business Improvement District, right: Kathleen Corey).

Step 2 - Procurement and Design: »» Purchase the planters (DPW is planning to use Sybertech self-watering planters described on page 40). »» Identify a temporary storage location where planters can be delivered »» Select plants and boxes.* »» Purchase planters and plant material (plants and soil). »» Purchase supporting materials as required (curb stops, fertilizers, etc.). »» Identify water source at planter site to fill reservoirs. Step 3 - Assembly: »» Identify a site where assembly can take place. »» Transport plants, planters and soil to assembly site. »» Plant the plants in soil, fertilize as needed. Step 4 - Installation: »» Create a design drawing to guide installation. »» Transport planters to installation site. »» Install planters in street per construction documents. »» Fill reservoirs with water.

Self-watering planters, like those pictured in the two photos above by Sybertech, can help keep reduce the burden of watering plants. For more information, see spec sheet on page 40 (Sybertech).

Step 5 - Ongoing Maintenance - anticipated duties include: »» Plant care - weeding and filling reservoirs with water; ongoing watering. »» Relocating planters and curb stops if they are hit/moved by cars. »» Replacing planters and curb stops if they are damaged/broken. »» Replanting plants that are damaged or overgrown. *Consider sourcing local / native plants. The Materials Catalogue for San Francisco’s Pavement to Parks Program provides guidance on local plant selection:

MATERIALS PALETTE · Landscaping Elements · 67

Tactical Urbanist's Guide to Materials and Design v.1.0  

The only materials and design guidance for Tactical Urbanist demonstration, pilot, and interim design projects. Funded by the James L. Knigh...

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