Every year, the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) hosts a national convention in partnership with a local ASLA chapter in the state in which it is held. National ASLA and the local chapter then work together to design and install a “legacy park” in the host city to promote greenspace in urban areas.
In 2016, the convention was held in New Orleans. DBA teamed with National ASLA, the Louisiana Chapter of ASLA (LCASLA) and the New Orleans Downtown Development District (DDD) to select a site in an area with little open space. The project team located a vast expanse of asphalt at the International High School of New Orleans, whose students had no access to unpaved outdoor play space.
The proposed park space was designed for the students and for public use. DBA and LCASLA held a design charrette at the school that included students and faculty, as well as residents and business owners in the Downtown neighborhood. The charrette allowed various users to create plans and visualize what the park space could be.
DBA then created construction documents for the 5,000 square foot pocket park, which incorporates an outdoor classroom, small play yard, outdoor seating, and lighting. The park can be used for school events and on evenings and weekends for public events. The site has quickly become an immensely popular destination within the school and downtown communities.