- Location: Denver, CO
- Client: Denver Parks & Recreation
- Project Partner: Livable Cities
- Park Size: 12 acres
Joseph P. Martinez Park contains multi-use trails, playground features, and gathering spaces for small events. Lakewood Gulch flows through the park and offers park users a sense of connection to nature with its narrow floodplain and riparian corridor. Great Ecology was the ecological consultant on the Livable Cities Master Plan team to re-envision the park to celebrate its cultural and ecological significance. Great Ecology performed ecological assessments including a tree survey, vegetation evaluation, and a review of the Denver Parks and Recreation Landscape Typology dataset.
Landscape Typology is a geospatial database designed to delineate vegetation communities within parks and open spaces and assign ecological function to each community to help guide maintenance and restoration efforts. The Landscape Typology dataset for all Denver Parks was developed by Great Ecology in 2018 and 2019 and was used on this project to aid in landscape conversion recommendations and determine the overall ecological function of the park.
Based on data collection and review of background materials, Great Ecology provided recommendations on ecological and social enhancements such as invasive species removal, restoring floodplain connectivity, native tree and vegetation plantings, nature play opportunities, and overall park connectivity and programming. The tree survey included tree diameter measurements, tree species, general condition, and a canopy cover assessment. Siberian elms (Ulmus pumila), a non-native invasive tree species, are present in large quantities throughout the riparian corridor and removal and replacement was recommended to enhance the ecological function and overall diversity of the park. Great Ecology also suggested areas for bluegrass lawn to native grass and forb conversions to enhance biodiversity, create pollinator habitat, and reduce irrigation and maintenance needs throughout the park.
Opportunities and Constraints Map
Landscape Typologies Map