EL PARQue del rio

Funded through the City’s 2008 Parks Bond, the project scope required us to master plan the river parkway from St. Francis to Palace.

El Parque del Rio is a linear park that follows the Santa Fe River as it flows through downtown Santa Fe, NM. A major amenity and historic site in the city, the river park was beset with a series of long-term problems. Incising of the river channel has affected the heath and viability of many of the old cottonwoods and trees along the park. Storm water that had in decades past helped support the river environment was now piped and fed directly into the river along with increased erosion and road pollutants. The City of Santa Fe wanted to explore new ways to handle its storm water runoff and selected Surroundings to design and build new methods.

Our team developed a variety of methods for recapturing storm water to support the river environment, including “oxbow” infiltration structures and pipe conveyance intercepts. A unique idea was modeled on historic agricultural acequias to create “stormwater acequias” that take road runoff and intercept and reroute it to linear water absorbing wicks.  These stormwater acequias will water new orchard trees and native cottonwoods along the river park.

Santa Fe, NM

City of Santa Fe

Kenneth Francis, Principal
Sandra Donner
Faith Okuma
Chrissy Scarpitti
Joseph Charles

NMASLA Merit Award
AIA ABQ Merit Award
Sustainable Santa Fe Award

FEATURED IN:               Smithsonian Magazine

CONTRACTOR:         Lockwood Construction

Kate Russell