Facilities Master Plan
Landscape development shall occur within the existing context of a mature native northwest habitat. Development standards shall require that landscape areas be purposefully and carefully managed with the intent of maintaining a healthy and safe campus environment. Landscape opportunities shall be explored in collaboration with campus life, science, and natural resource programs in order to create learning opportunities. The college shall seek to educate its community about the environment through interpretative learning. All landscape development will follow sustainability guidelines for preservation of environment.
By defining differing levels of landscape management and identifying zones across campus, design and maintenance standards are established, including the removal of unhealthy, invasive, or non-native species. A well thought-out and publicly distributed approach will assuage concerns when landscape elements need to be removed. This plan will become a teaching tool for college construction programs and the community, illustrating the importance of managing natural resources.
Highly Managed Landscape
Areas immediately adjacent to buildings and other important campus amenities shall typically be designated as areas receiving a high level of landscape management. Within these zones, unhealthy, invasive, and non-native species will be removed and replaced. Landscape shall be designed utilizing trees, shrubs, and groundcover hardy in the Pacific Northwest. Plantings shall be arranged to display their beauty and function as well as diversity. Specimen plants shall be grouped to allow for a cohesive visual appearance. Species which bring color, variety, and demonstrate the changing seasons should be emphasized.
Moderately Managed Landscape
In areas defined as moderately managed, an ongoing effort will remove and replace unhealthy, invasive, and non-native species with Pacific Northwest plants. The primary characteristic of these areas will be to demonstrate natural vegetative and animal habitats typical of northwest forests. Decorative species should not be used. Areas under existing tree canopies shall showcase under-story plants typical of Pacific Northwest forests.
Minimally Managed Landscape
Areas defined as minimally managed will have unhealthy, invasive, and non-native species removed to the extent practical. Native woodland planting will be permitted to grow naturally to create diverse habitats for wildlife.
Whenever possible, surface storm water treatment methods shall demonstrate an “ornamental rain-garden” and consist of the creation of microtopography in the shallow areas and planting with ornamental, adapted, and native plants (grasses, sedges, rushes, etc.) that enjoy wet roots in winter and dry conditions in summer. This will demonstrate sustainable design principles and showcase many plant varieties now available for use in rain garden and infiltration swales/ponds. Opportunities to create storm water system laboratories as part of the Natural Resources program curriculum will be explored
The campus currently contains several natural wetlands. Per NDPES regulations, these areas shall be protected to the extent reasonable as the campus is developed.
As the north end of campus is developed, there will be opportunity to restore a stream buried by the existing TI complex. In keeping with the values of GRCC, strong consideration will be given to restoring the stream to its natural condition. A restored stream would become an amenity for campus as well as an example of campus environmental principles.
In support of Green River Community College’s commitment to maintaining and promoting sustainable environmental planning and preservation, all college development will seek to incorporate low impact development practices.