Elegant, compelling landscape solutions for forty-four years.

Alamosa Skatepark

Location: Albuquerque, NM

Completed: 2007

Alamosa Skatepark was commissioned in 2004 to be the City’s second in-ground large scale skatepark. The majority of the City’s other existing skateparks are typical bowls with radiused transitions and limited “streetscape” elements. It draws inspiration from Albuquerque’s extensive arroyo system as well as site specific elements in the City that are now off-limits to skating. Various elements are incorporated in a cohesive site plan that responds to current trends in the sport.

The park is split into two distinctive sections: the Trenches and the Skylit Bowl. The Trenches are described as a “street plaza” with a mix of banks, ledges, walls, stairs, gaps and rails in various combinations. The Skylit Bowl is a large version of the empty swimming pool feature often found in skateparks.

The skatepark has multiple entry points, which further enhance the concept of a park in which to skate. Along the south side of the park an existing pedestrian walk provides access to three entry points; an uphill sloped walk, a down-hill sloped ramp and a set of stairs. Two ride-able walks connect the Trenches to the Skylit Bowl, which is connected to a perimeter walk with a crusher fines path. These connections provide easy internal circulation and a sense of openness to the surrounding site.

Among skaters, the response to the park has been highly positive, partly because features of the park mimic places like Civic Plaza and the University of New Mexico, where skating is no longer allowed.  With its public, park-like features such as grassy lawns and walkways, it also draws non-skaters, resulting in a wide range of visitors.

Alamosa skatepark has been featured in several magazines and videos, as well as being a case study in the 11th edition of Architectural Graphic Standards.  It was also the site of a national skateboarding contest and has hosted numerous smaller events.  


Four Hills village Park

Location: Albuquerque, NM

Completed: July 2015

This exciting park is based on the concept that play is not limited to a particular area; rather, the entire park becomes a playground.

Inspired by stories of adventure and exploration, it is heavily planted with a variety of trees that will eventually create a shady forest as the setting for play. There is no turf in this high desert park - instead, a continuous carpet of engineered wood fiber forms a soft surface and a woodland-like setting.

Natural boulder retaining walls create a raised terrace with benches and trees that follows a forest walk loop trail around the park. Opportunities abound to leave the ADA sidewalk and dodge through a copse of trees, hide behind trunks, duck into rooms created by masses of ornamental grasses, scramble over boulders between levels, and balance along the spine of an old tree trunk.

The focus of the park is a big treehouse-like play structure that is connected to the perimeter forest walk. Exercise stations and a small basketball court in other areas ensure fun for both adults and children, and shade structures and a group picnic area provide views overlooking the Tijeras Arroyo to the Sandia Mountains beyond. 


Officer Daniel Webster Memorial Children's park, PHASE i

Location: Albuquerque, NM

Completed: 2016

 

Working closely with the community, special needs experts, and the City of Albuquerque, this 4.5 acre parcel of flat, paved land in an underserved neighborhood has started its transition to a major urban park that serves not only the local community, but welcomes the entire metropolitan area with its inclusive design. The concept is to provide fun and recreation for all, regardless of age, ability or interest.

Phase One has as its centerpiece a large, shaded play structure modeled on a huge interchange where two national highways intersect in Albuquerque.  Wide, two-way traffic ramps (for both wheelchairs and people), rise and meet a series of elevated, looped walkways that lead to slides, climbers, spinners and nets. There is a lot to do: easy to climb equipment is located together with more challenging elements to encourage side-by-side play for children of varying abilities; interactive panels are located both in easy reach on the elevated platforms and a step further down a path of engineered wood mulch to provide graduated challenges.  Caregivers may accompany children to lookout balconies to encourage play and interaction between levels. Areas for both boisterous and quieter, make-believe play are all available.

Careful thought went into the arrangement of all elements to allow for easy access, clear sight lines and safety, without making these features obvious. For example, low concrete benches provide seating around the play area, yet also serve as simple climbing structures for toddlers and as unobtrusive barriers to children who might be tempted to run off. A perimeter path allows children to quietly survey the activity before plunging in, and numerous activity panels allow for a variety of visual, tactile and musical experiences.

In anticipation of future phases, many trees have been planted so that they may grow while further planning takes place, and a small turf plaza with paths hints at future picnic and play areas. Irrigation and electrical stub outs are in place, ready for future phases that will bring large turf areas and lighting. Future plans call for the park to be built out to the edges, but these plans allow for flexibility in development as users make suggestions and we all learn what approaches are the most productive and enriching.


Isotopes Ballpark

Location: Albuquerque, NM

Completed: 2003

with HOK and SMPC Architects

MRWM assisted HOK with site design, parking lots, pedestrian access, and provided design and construction phase services for the stadium exterior and interior general landscaping and irrigation.  The project was executed quickly, with schematic design, construction document development, and construction oversight conducted in 12-14 months. 

We worked in close cooperation with the City Administration and Parks Management staff to design a maintainable landscape that would work into the long-term future. The Park won the "Field of the Year" award from the Sports Turf Managers Association in 2013.


La Luz de Amistad Park

Location: Albuquerque, NM

Completed: 2010

La Luz de Amistad Park once served as a gateway feature to the City of Albuquerque for visitors entering town along Route 66, but in recent years it had become a run-down shadow of its former self.

The City of Albuquerque hired MRWM landscape architects to redesign the park. The project included a complete renovation and recreation of two main plaza spaces, each with artistic features at the center. 

The main plaza incorporated a sundial created of precast, colored concrete pavers.  It also included the addition of benches and whimsical bike racks evocative of a peloton of cyclists, marking the park as the terminus of the Tramway Boulevard bike trail.  A sculptural wall of precast concrete segments and LED accent lighting complete the project making it attractive and inviting to visitors and residents alike.


Martineztown Park

Location: Albuquerque, NM

Completed: Phase II: 2011, Phase III: 2016

MRWM’s involvement in South Martineztown dates back to 1973, with the design and construction of the original park in one of Albuquerque’s most historic neighborhoods. 

The park’s construction was an important part of urban revitalization efforts in the early 1970s that transformed a deteriorating residential area that was declared “a blighted slum” and slated for condemnation into a prosperous and vital community at the center of Albuquerque’s urban core. 

Most recently, MRWM has served as lead design consultant for the second and third phases of a three-phase renovation effort at the park and adjacent Longfellow Elementary School.  The current improvements are focused on highlighting the park’s location along the original route of the congressionally designated 404-mile El Camino Real de Tierra Adentro National Historic Trail. 

MRWM is working with the City of Albuquerque, Albuquerque Public Schools, Citizens Information Committee of Martineztown, and National Park Service to turn the park into an important educational resource for school children, tourists, and community residents through the inclusion of interpretive signage, public art, and historical design elements.   Improvements also include playground renovations, water-use reduction, and a large public plaza.


Pat Hurley Hillside Development

Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico

Completed: 2009

Pat Hurley Park is the site of the Pat Hurley Community Center and two parks with passive and active recreation opportunities. It serves as the gathering place for the community and acts as the bridge between segments of the community divided by a steep escarpment.

The Pat Hurley Park Hillside Development presented the challenge of creating pathways and stair routes between parks located over 120 vertical feet apart.

The design solution addresses serious erosion problems on the steep hillside. Gabion rock walls (utilizing salvaged material), set into the hill create sturdy, safe routes that blend into the surrounding hillside.  Xeric plantings of native and naturalized plants further the visitor’s feeling of being in a natural landscape. The design also includes a new children’s play area and stage/public gathering space to support the programming of the community center. 

Pat Hurley Hillside was developed in a manner that used its tremendous physical disadvantages and challenges to create a place with the unusual combinations of excitement and beauty, exercise and contemplation, and expressions of traditional and modern elements. 

This park serves as an example of comprehensive planning for sustainability, pioneering construction methods, monitoring of long term success, and integration of physical and social program elements.


Robinson Park Renovation

Location: Albuquerque, NM

Completed: 2014

Robinson Park is an historic park in downtown Albuquerque. It was the first park built in Albuquerque after the Old Town Plaza, which dates from the 17th century.  It provided welcome, familiar shade and cool lawns in what was then a dusty frontier town.

The park continues to provide an oasis in downtown, as it hosts the weekly Downtown Growers' Market in the summer.

Heavy use had taken a toll on the condition of the turf over time, and irrigation efficiency had waned. The renovation addressed these concerns with a simple solution that required detailed analysis and clever problem-solving.  In addition, the existing concrete walk was widened to better accommodate weekend crowds, andthe associated turf removal was balanced with added turf coverage elsewhere in the park.  

MRWM worked with Parks Management and the existing irrigation system and came up with economical retrofit solutions that improved the overall appearance and use of the park. Its historic qualities are preserved while its contemporary use is improved and celebrated.