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2013 Environmental Sustainability Honor - Orlando Health Lake Beauty Park
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Project Category: Open Space

Project Name: Orlando Health Lake Beauty Park

Project Location: Orlando, FL 

Date of Completion:  February, 2013

Landscape Architect: Donald Wishart, AECOM Technical Services, Inc.


Owner: Orlando Health 

Landscape Contractor: LegacyScapes 

The completion of Lake Beauty Park is an expression of Orlando Health’s Patient First Model of Care, as well as the shared community mission of enhancement, beauty and economic development in the area.  The effort was achieved through the leadership of the Landscape Architect, to foster vision and collaboration between Orlando Health (OH), The City of Orlando and a private Doctor, each of whom owned land on this critical block at the gateway to the hospital campus. 

The Landscape Architect has been leading the effort to improve the character, quality and function of the Orlando Health campus for several years, and the fruits of that work are now beginning to become reality.  The Landscape Architect recognized the importance of the physical environment to the patients, families and professionals working at the hospital.  The Campus will be a place of well ordered clinical and non-clinical development within a walkable, legible, healing environment.  

The landscape architect also saw the potential for economic development within the surrounding area as means to provide needed support services such as work force housing, food, hotel and other commercial activities needed by the campus population.  As a result, the Landscape Architect assisted in the formation of the Real Estate Committee as a subcommittee of the OH Board and began apply the tenants of the newly adopted  Patient First Model of Care to the Campus and District.  The District strategy is being implemented through the Downtown South Neighborhood Improvement District (initially developed and funded by Orlando Health); many planning and development enhancement activities are underway. 

Lake Beauty is one of the first manifestations of the Patient First Model of Care in the physical environment – benefiting both the Campus and District.  The importance of the Lake Beauty project is seen through its environmental impact, its affect on the people that use the hospital campus, and the greater community.

Environment - The site (located at the corner of Miller Street and Orange Avenue) is a natural water body that had been overgrown with unsightly non-native materials and damaged by contaminated soils.  Today, the site is clean, with innovative rain gardens designed to capture runoff before entering the Lake.  Native plantings are adapted to natural cycles of rainfall and are supportive of increased fish and wildlife populations.  Mature native trees were preserved while new native canopy grows in to create a shady oasis.  And although the design creatively worked with a complex and constrained site condition, the lake edge was delicately reshaped to create usable walking and seating areas without compromising lake volume or natural habitat.

People - The Orlando Health campus serves thousands of people every day.  The need for places of personal reflection, friendly gathering, relaxation and emotional restoration are integral to the ‘Evidence Based Design’ characteristics of healing environments.  Orlando Health had no existing outdoor opportunity on campus.  Lake Beauty Park provides places to be alone, or be together, connected by a unified quarter mile walking loop, thanks to the partnership agreements fostered between the individual land owners.

Community - Lake Beauty Park is highly visible and accessible to the Orange Avenue Corridor (Downtown South) and nearby neighborhoods such as Delaney Park.  The dual role of announcing the entry to the Campus, but also providing a publicly accessible park and attractive investment to the corridor extends value to other properties within the newly formed District.  The reconstruction of perimeter roads, enhanced sidewalk connections and inviting landscapes of Lake Beauty Park have made it a popular meeting place for weekend cycling groups, neighborhood exercise walkers and picnic lunches for surrounding employment.  

Lake Beauty Park makes a bold, new statement regarding Orlando Health’s commitment to its patients and also the community and is the first of more enhancements to come for Downtown South. 


Owner:  Karl Hodges, VP of Business Development, Orlando Health

 Owner’s Representative:  Bob Szafranski, Director of Facility Development, Orlando Health

 Principal in Charge:  Peter C. Sechler, ASLA, AECOM 

Senior Designer:  Donald G. Wishart, RLA, AECOM 

Project Manager, Construction Manager:  Kevin J. Aust, RLA, AECOM 

QA/QC:  Tom McMacken, ASLA, AECOM 

Project Designer:  Kody K. Smith, formerly AECOM 

Civil Engineering Principal:  Bob Schanck, PE, GAI Consultants, Inc. 

Civil Engineering Project Manager:  Keith Haugdahl, PE, GAI Consultants, Inc. 

Structural Engineer:  David G. Kittridge, PE 

Electrical Engineer:  Kendall L. Mason, PE, RLF, Inc. 

Irrigation Design:  Kevin Smith, Computerized Design Services 

Fountain Design & Engineering:  Todd Hall, Hall Fountains, Inc. 

Geotechnical Engineering:  Robert Trompke, PE, PSI, Inc. 

Survey:  James Rickman, Allen & Company, Inc. 

General Contractor:  Larry Foor, Gomez Construction 

Landscape & Irrigation Project Manager:  David Ressler, LegacyScapes

Shade Sculpture Fabrication:  Dennis Sutherlin, Nassal Metal Works

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MISSION STATEMENT Leading, educating, and participating in the careful stewardship, wise planning, and artful design of our cultural and natural environments.