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Posted: December 5, 2013 Final touches to be put on S. Barstow Street landscaping in the spring



South Barstow Street's landscape project is coming to a finish, now with the trees planted and planters mulched. 

There are 42 trees in the design, Deputy City Engineer Doug Derks said.  That's more than before construction, with that landscape featuring less than 30 trees, all ash.  Derks said this design has trees of at least six varieties.

The new scenery on S. Barstow also has 17 landscaped planting areas, which is also more than it had before.

Garret Perry, owner of Design Studio Etc., the company that designed the layout, said the new layout of South Barstow is to represent the flow pattern of two rivers. The arrangement of the new trees, shrubs, and perennials go along with the sculptures and trash cans along the street, to resemble logs in a river. If people use their imagination walking down the sidewalk, or catch an aerial view, they will be able to picture Barstow like a flowing river, he said.

Perry said this design is a lot more diverse than in the past. A highlight is that the street will have "some kind of floral or colorful aspect all time of the year." Eventually, as the trees grow older, there will be a canopy over the street, Perry said.

 City engineers say sprinkler heads have been installed and Rainmaster will install the rest of the irrigation and drip system in the spring. 

 There are still leftover spaces, Perry said. Because of the extra space there is room for more designs or sculpture ideas to think of in the future. 

 The amount of green space also goes up, with the increase in trees, according to Mike Carlson, President of South Barstow Street Business Improvement District, and a member of the Design Committee, which helped make decisions regarding amenities and design items during the construction project. The new landscape also allows for more parking spaces in comparison to the previous layout.

 The plan was decided by working closely with city engineers, said Carlson. The Design Committee, made up of S. Barstow area business people, spent many months looking for an appealing look for South Barstow and they agreed on the same plan.

 "The whole committee was involved from the beginning," said Carlson.

 Many people contributed ideas that led to deviations from the original plan.  Factors into the decision making process were that this plan goes along with traffic better, the trees go best with the weather and come with a one year guarantee that if a tree needs to be replaced, it will be for free, Carlson said.

The new landscape design gives Eau Claire a lot to look forward to, Carlson said, with additional parking space and the added colors soon to decorate the street. 

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