JFS Engineering
Land Development and Water Resources Engineering
Site Design for Historic Preservation

Historic Catch Basin at Monticello

When looking at site design from a historical perspective, it is important to note both the context and time period for the proposed work.  Having been raised in an area proud of it’s colonial heritage, I am still amazed that a meticulously preserved building can be spoiled with modern site design details, like a parking lot, where some thoughtful earth sculpture could have kept these intrusions at bay.  It leaves one to wonder if by paving the road to Walden Pond we missed the point entirely.

Many features of modern site design can be incorporated into historical context; a stringent review of New Jersey’s “Low Impact Development Standards” will yield softer stormwater management solutions appropriate for a pastoral context.  The look and feel of site features and detailing is surprisingly malleable, and while selection of some traditional treatments may require a design waiver these are typically arguable based on historic context.

Over the years I have found great examples of site infrastructure in historical context. For ideas on how to incorporate these features into your site design, check out my Pinterest Board: Catch Basins of the World.

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