Project Description

Custom concrete benches line the pedestrian walkway.

Custom concrete benches line the pedestrian walkway.

Rain garden with undulating concrete bench along sidewalk.

Rain garden with undulating concrete bench along sidewalk.

The translation of ZOCALO to English is “plinth.” Zocalo is the traditional name for the central plaza in Mexico City that has been occupied continuously since the time of the Aztecs when it served as the ceremonial center of the community.

This grant funded project undertaken for the Immokalee Community Redevelopment Agency is located on Immokalee’s most prominent street corner. The design was developed in collaboration with the citizens of Immokalee, an agricultural community of about 24,000 residents who are largely immigrants and migrant workers from South and Central America and the Caribbean.

The Zocalo is a ½ acre park with a bandshell, shade trellis, shaded paths, rain garden, bike racks, seating and activity lawn.

Crushed shell area with trellis and band shell beyond.

Crushed shell area with trellis and band shell beyond.

Band Shell construction detail.

Band Shell construction detail.

Downtown Immokalee is largely devoid of trees. We felt that since the community is pedestrian and bike oriented, shade would be a primary focus of our design. With this in mind, we retained and improved an existing diagonal pathway, forming an arcade of native sabal palms and making it the central organizing element of the park.

Custom bike rack with palm trees beyond.

Custom bike rack with palm trees beyond.

With the use of xeriscaping, crushed shell paving, concrete and steel, and cypress log benches the park will be rugged and require little maintenance./blockquote>

Locals using the different spaces in the park.

Locals using the different spaces in the park.

Design Awards

AIA Florida Southwest

Merit Award for New Work – 2014

National Community Development Association

Audrey Nelson Community Development Award – 2014

Jury comments:

“This is a well-conceived and executed cultural park project. The jury was energized by the Architect’s ability to enliven a previously under-utilized, prominent corner along a main thoroughfare using simple materials and smart design. This project is an example of how Architecture, when conceived with the user’s habits and desires at the forefront of decision making, can create a space that feels as if it can exist only in this place. It was apparent to the jury that this project has created a much-needed place that enhances its entire neighborhood and not just the site itself.”

Pedestrian walkway at night with carnival lighting.

Pedestrian walkway at night with carnival lighting.

Gallery