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Entries in waterfront (3)

Friday
Jan232015

Project of the Month: Seaside Sustainability

LINLA Gold Award Winner 2014: Seaside Sustainability

 

We are proud to showcase our Gold Award winning project Seaside Sustainability, recognized by an esteemed panel of Long Island judges, for its unique environmentally sensitive solution in combination with a dynamic seaside aesthetic.
 A waterfront property can be captivating, entertaining, and breathtaking while showcasing the wonders of nature and her natural amenities.  However, there are risks associated with living on the water’s edge.  


Here is where you can watch the tides go by in a secluded seating area that is encapsulated by an aesthetically pleasing and functional design.

As many people know, in 2012, Hurricane Sandy brought with it a wave of destruction and chaos.  Tidal surges and winds were the major environmental forces that have now reshaped the landscape of this Hewlett Harbor property and many communities throughout the south shore of Long Island.

The waterfront perspective has been completely re-imagined into a passive use garden. A Hollywood juniper survived the storm and stands strong in the background.

A landscape we designed many years ago was one of the many in Sandy’s devastating path.   Tidal surge and prolonged salt water inundation during the storm compromised much of the plantings and all of the lawn.  Large trees were uprooted by strong winds and flooding was a major issue on this site. A once pristine waterfront retreat had become a horticultural nightmare and remained susceptible to future damage.  Disheartened by the damage to their property, the homeowners were contemplating selling their home to cut their losses.  Our professional design team worked with the homeowner to provide a sustainable solution by creating a more resilient landscape which they were going to use as a selling point when the house eventually went on the market.  The homeowner’s main concern was flooding in the lower level of their home and keeping the property lawn-free.  Our design initiative was to create a more sustainable landscape by implementing natural stormwater management practices, while being sensitive to the homeowner’s naturalistic and organic needs.  

The backyard has now become a series of interconnected spaces with an emphasis on planting.A revitalized waterfront landscape with an organic vegetable garden and gravel walkways.

 

 

A revived natural landscape shines through with a lush plantscape and ornamental birdhouse.The evolution of the planting design on the property was a result of input from our client and consideration of the coastal environment.  We planted trees, shrubs and perennials that are salt and wind tolerant that will endure many of nature’s challenges while offering a variety of colors and textures throughout the year.  Salt tolerant evergreens such as Eastern Red Cedar and Hollywood Juniper were planted for privacy screening on both sides of the property without compromising the spectacular water views.  Shrubs such as Shore Juniper and Winterberry were planted along with Dwarf Fountain Grass and Little Bluestem along the water’s edge to frame and enhance the water views from the house, patios, and bulkhead sitting areas.  We repurposed an existing formal rose garden that was trashed by the storm into a bountiful organic vegetable garden within a circular paver design to retain interest during all seasons. 

These landscape renovations were recently put to the ultimate test during a record rainfall when the high tide breached the bulkhead and started flooding our client’s landscape.  As the hours moved on and the tide moved in, all floodwater that moved into the site was diverted away from the house and infiltrated the ground as planned.  The success of a sustainable landscape can only be measured during extreme weather conditions, and this design proved its effectiveness and resiliency.  

The final overview of a resilient landscape design that combines both form and function to create a lush and entertaining waterfront lifestyle.

Written by Nick Onesto

Pictures by Susan Sotera

 

Wednesday
Feb122014

Sustainable Design in a Changing Climate 

Post Hurricane Sandy redesign for waterfront residence: no lawn, salt tolerant plants, bermed to deter floodingOver the past few years, you may have noticed the growing publicity regarding global warming. What can we do to stop it or slow it down?  In reality, global warming (also known as global climate change) is a natural process that has been occurring on and off since the formation of the planet. Industrialization has accelerated this natural process, releasing chemicals and particles into the atmosphere and waterways. Recently, strict regulations regarding clean air and water have been put in place to ensure the health and safety for people and our planet.  Keep in mind; regulations do not stop climate change.  Instead, they awaken industries, governments, and citizens to the sensitivity of our environmental resources and how much of an impact humans have on natural systems. 

As a result of climate change, we need to adapt our current lifestyles and adjust to new trends in weather. Global climate change is associated with large scale changes in weather patterns in various forms related to both heating and cooling. Sustainable design, also known as ‘Green Design,’ can aid you in this lifestyle transition and make life more eco-friendly. A sustainable design is defined by its sensitivity to environmental systems such as local hydrology, topography, and native plant communities. There are many benefits of sustainable design for the homeowner and it can prove to be a vital landscape investment.

Examples of sustainable landscape practices include:

Rain Barrel: A 55 gallon drum with screen and piping that is connected to your gutters. Rain barrels can have attached hoses, or irrigation lines to feed your plants with recycled water.

Vegetated Swales: A mildly sloping depression that directs flowing rainwater to existing drainage systems, while promoting water to infiltrate the soil and reducing stress on public sewer systems.

Porous Pavement: Layers of permeable material with void spaces that allow water to pass through the pavement and eventually infiltrate the soil beneath.

Green Roof: A living roof with plants that are drought and sun tolerant. Helps reduce heating and cooling expenses and is a beautiful contemporary aesthetic.

Retention Basin: Any constructed area designed to hold water and allow infiltration over time. Designs range from highly vegetated rain gardens to precast drywells underground.  

Award winning green roof, Eaton's NeckSustainable design practices can be implemented to mitigate the issues that homeowners face during climate change. To find the practices that work best on your property, start by identifying which natural systems affect you. Here on Long Island, wind can be a major destructive force that causes erosion. Windbreaks are a design solution that can help relieve some of the stress provided by windstorms. Plants can be used to screen wind and provide a comfortable microclimate in other seasons. Tidal surge is another erosive problem and is associated with sea level rise, wave action and severe flooding events. That is why it is crucial to have efficient stormwater management practices at your home, whether you are on the shore or inland. It is important to have a comprehensive analysis done for the existing conditions of soil and plant health on your property. This information can guide you in preventing erosion, slope stabilization and proper plant selection. Wildlife, plant life and human life can coexist symbiotically and evolve in unison with climate change.  

 

 

Goldberg and Rodler’s staff can help you with this process, while assisting you to design a beautiful and sustainable landscape. 

Written by Nick Onesto

Tuesday
Sep252012

Goldberg & Rodler Wins National Landscape Award!

Plan: Click to enlarge

Goldberg & Rodler has won another national award (from PLANET) for one of our projects.We're so pleased that the judges recognized our team's hard work on the design and the installation of this residence. Read on to discover exactly what we did and to see pictures, before and after, of the project.

When our clients bought this waterfront residence it was virtually un-maintained for several years and needed a complete overhaul. Their wish list included making the steep and narrow driveway easier to navigate, creating inviting entertaining spaces, a putting green, a BBQ, removals of invasive plants, renovating the leaking gunite pool, extensive outdoor lighting, better dock access and storage space for recreation items.

Overgrown, dead and invasive plantings were the first big challenge with the site. Removing hemlocks infested with wooly adelgid, controlling invasive English Ivy, removing Poison Ivy and essential pruning for the property's shade trees. Most existing retaining walls on site were failing and had to be replaced or repaired. The leaking gunite pool needed extensive renovation. Raccoons had made the dock their personal bathroom. The current drainage pattern was down the driveway (about 20 feet higher than the house at the street), straight to the house.

Before: Click to enlarge

After: Click to enlargeWe re-graded the driveway changing a 17% slope to a 15% slope and built boulder walls at the road and below for guest parking. A custom Belgian Block Cobble culvert, strip drain and surface drains catch runoff coming down the driveway and direct it into 3 new drywells. A shed off the parking stall holds family bikes and there's space for one-on-one basketball.

Green: Click to enlarge

Waterfall: Click to enlarge

A cozy putting green sits below the pool area. A large brick and bluestone patio surrounds the renovated gunite pool, complete with a new bluestone coping. We added a swim out to the deep end and converted the existing pond to a reservoir that spills into the pool, circulating the water. Random bricks break up the sheet of water into tranquil white noise.

Pool Area: Click to enlargeLighting: Click to enlargeA new composite deck with glass paneled railings keeps the view unobstructed. The steps lead to irregular bluestone with lawn joints out to open lawn. A custom railing and gate keeps raccoons from wreaking havoc on the dock. We designed an extensive lighting plan to highlight the landscape and make the property usable all day.

BBQ: Click to enlargeWater View: Click to enlargeAll of the bluff planting was retained to ensure slope stability and we selectively pruned along the bluff to maintain a dramatic view to the water. As part of our philosophy, we try to reuse as much of the existing vegetation and materials as possible. Existing daylilies were transplanted along the top of the slope to help prevent washout erosion and we rehabilitated and transplanted rhododendrons from the pool area to a woodland setting where they could thrive.

The property had many dilapidated boulder structures scattered about, built years ago by a monk, and had sentimental value to our clients. We salvaged and repurposed every boulder for new boulder and gabion walls and also for rip rap in various places to retain slopes.

Difficulties during construction included a massive rainstorm in the middle of the driveway construction. The basement flooded and we discovered the previous owners had concealed a major issue: they had built a false wall in the basement to hide the fact that there was no waterproofing on the foundation. We worked through the night with the family to empty the basement of water and came back the next day to waterproof the foundation. Also, gutters were pitched incorrectly and downspouts were broken or clogged. We replaced all leaders and gutters and calculated drainage capacity for the new drywells. Other discoveries included rotten wood and a leaking roof which were both replaced with high tech, low-maintenance materials (a slate substitute and Azek columns) to maintain the historic look of the house.

 

Photos by Susan Sotera