Luxuriant Shade Among the Sacramento Valley Grasslands
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DETAILS

LocationRoseville, California, United States
ClientHED Architects
Size500 acres

This restudy of the master plan for the 200-hectare Hewlett Packard site at Roseville, undertaken with architects Holland, East & Duvivier, led to a new master plan for the 23,000-square-meter service, repair, and distribution facility on the site as well as full landscape architectural services for the upgrading of the surrounding landscape. The plan details building placement, road layout, grading, entries, pedestrian ways, employee recreation areas, and open space, while accommodating a modular building type intended to serve as a prototype for future Hewlett Packard expansion.

The property had previously suffered from difficult soil conditions and a series of long, hot summers that had killed off all previous landscaping efforts. The solution, proposed by SWA, was not to try to master the environment but to respect and appreciate it. Drought-tolerant native grassland was reestablished wherever possible, and against the background of the vast, open plain of the Sacramento Valley, shade was introduced wherever possible. A poplar-lined pedestrian walkway is raised above the Chinese Elm-shaded parking lot, leading into the building. Oaks and Bradford pear trees were used to unify the recreational complex and to give its large sports courts areas both scale and shade. To help the trees thrive, root competition from shrubs, ground cover, and lawns was eliminated, and the permeable ground plan emphasizes localized and individual watering, as well as a sub-drain system to mitigate flash floods.

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