Calle Guanajuato Restoration Master Plan
Western Slope Gathering Area & Connecting Paths
plan alternative offered by: Lithia Arts Guild of Oregon
Time restraints demand that the following statement be limited to a description of the enclosed plan. Between now and the 25th of April, I hope to have additional information available to the Parks Commission and Staff at our website www.lithiaartsguild.org - click on culture. The following plan is a result of input from the many meetings I have attended and sponsored since the 1997 New Years Day Flood. I would like to thank the Parks Commission and Staff, the Lithia Artisans Market Board, Ashland Community Activists, and the Ashland Arts Board for their help and support.
The Connecting Stairs between Granite St. and the west bank of Ashland Creek:
The position of the base of the stair (creekside path) was first recommended to me by Brian McCarthy (lead architect) on the day of the foot bridge dedication. This variance from the original Master Plan at first caught me by surprise, but in thinking the proposal through, the advantages became obvious.
1. By tucking the base of the stair behind the wall you protect its most vulnerable portion from flood waters. 2. You can quickly gain 4 to 5 feet of rise in the area of the wall, allowing large portions of the remaining distance (to Granite St.) to be flat. Notice that a significant stretch of the path follows the 1895 contour line. 3. Traffic along the stair would not interfere with activities in the Gathering Area.
Although the possibility of putting the stair on piers has been discussed, the overriding preference of most people has been to integrate it into the landscape. This option is more durable and aesthetically pleasing. The bottle dump was well mapped during the first phase of construction, and the portion of the path crossing this area, must be hand dug. Elements of the alternative offered include:
1. The continued use of hewn stone as steps. This feature can be seen in the various access points to Ashland Creek and as a buttress, to the toe of the slope, on the down stream side of the Gathering Area. For pictures go to www.lithiaartsguild.org and click on culture. 2. The use of pavers to help in the stablization of the path and to provide continuity with the rest of the design is shown in the plan. These areas of the path would be level, with the only rise occuring at the hewn stone steps themselves. 3. Retaining walls above and below the path could, for the most part, be accomplished with the placement of natural stone.
The Gathering Area
The prospect of a small Gathering Area on the west bank of Ashland Creek has generated a good deal of excitement within the community. Through the course of construction we hope to gain as much level space for presentations as possible. The use of hewn stone will have the double advantage of protecting the toe of the slope from flood waters and seating for audience members and meeting participants. The plan recommends four tiers of stone, stair stepping up the foot of the slope, with random stones continuing up the grade.
Celebrating the Benefits of Water
After spending so much time and energy protecting ourselves from the few hours out of every 10 to 20 years that we experience the destructive element of water; Lithia Arts Guild would like to recognise and celebrate the benefits of water. We propose to do this through the commission of small bronze sculptures located along the path proceeding up to Granite St. - and - we hope to find an artist from Guanajuato to craft a tile to be set in the center of the Gathering Area (see plan).
Lithia Arts Guild
The Lithia Arts Guild has $13,000 to dedicate to the actual construction of the project and an additional $3,000 available for commission of the artwork mentioned above. Our priorities are the purchase and installation of pavers and completion of the Gathering Area.
James Royce Young
chair: Lithia Arts Guild of Oregon
ph. (541) 535 5362 email