Maximizing Urban Gathering Places With Vibrant Water Features That Enrich and Revitalize the Surrounding Community

Posted in News -

After being confined to our homes over the last several months to help stop the spread of COVID-19, many of us are longing to get outside to safely enjoy local open spaces, rekindle our connection with nature, and re-connect with our communities.

Among the open spaces people will be drawn to in the coming months are public parks and urban gathering places. This choice provides numerous benefits for visitors and their neighborhoods. According to the US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health, “A well-designed open space that encourages outdoor activity and social [interaction] is a community asset that could potentially contribute to the health of local residents and social harmony of the community.”

In addition, the site says, water within these landscapes can increase their use, as can facilities with active programming.

OTL has deep expertise in providing water features for public parks and urban gathering places that both beautify the space and attract residents and visitors to the location.

Here are a few examples of water features we have constructed for public spaces that create distinctive open areas ideal for encouraging social harmony.

  • Waterfront Park, San Diego—In the center of this iconic downtown park, OTL delivered a dramatic centerpiece consisting of an 830-foot-long fountain and children’s splash area. The installation contributed to the transformation of a non-descript municipal building site into a vibrant gathering place for people of all ages to splash, play, and behold.
  • Grand Park, Los Angeles—OTL partnered with Raymond Group to reconstruct a 1960s-era fountain into a spectacular focal-point crowning the park and its new interactive reflecting pool fountain. The award-winning water feature serves as an urban gathering place where people come together, relax and enjoy life.
  • University Place Mall, Salt Lake City—The magnificent show fountain and interactive deck OTL designed and constructed at one of the largest malls in Utah are key gathering spaces for this unique 112-acre mixed-use destination. Our company has expertise in projects for these Privately Owned Public Spaces (POPS), which bridge the gap between municipal parks and mixed-use retail space. The indoor children’s play area features a massive granite globe floating on a thin film of water; kids can easily spin the globe and delight in its movement and structure.
  • Tongva Park & Ken Genser Square, Santa Monica, California—These two public spaces near Santa Monica’s City Hall are connected by a series of water features built by OTL to accommodate a range of uses, enhancing the space and experience for community members and visitors. OTL worked with landscape architect James Corner Field Operations and water feature designer Fluidity Design Consultants to create cascading water steps featuring internally illuminated bubblers that produce an ever-changing variety of patterns and sequences. Speakers playing recordings of seagulls in distress keep birds at bay while attracting locals and visitors to this beautiful site.

These projects represent just a few of the projects that OTL has built in public spaces across the country. Our team is always looking forward to the next opportunity to help make communities better by creating signature water features that will be enjoyed by all for generations to come.