Reinventing Wingfield Pines: Creating a Regional Showcase for Floodplain Rehabilitation in a Post-mined Landscape (2007)
Wingfield Pines has experienced a variety of uses that have shaped the aesthetic and ecological character of the site. The site was first used for coal strip mining in the late 1800s, and then a golf course in the 1970s, imprinting on the landscape a legacy that has drastically reshaped the native floodplain ecosystem and severely compromised the health of the surrounding environment. Our project has focused on developing a detailed and comprehensive restoration, management, and master plan for Wingfield Pines. The restoration component required a meticulous inventory of the site's flora and fauna, as well as the identification and analysis of existing high-quality creek floodplain ecosystems in the Pittsburgh area to serve as reference sites. We designed restoration plantings that maximize wildlife value, increase biodiversity, and provide educational and recreational amenities for the public. The management plan is prescribed in phases for the actual implementation and long-term success of the restoration processes, as well as continued success of the site as a community asset. The master plan addresses aspects of the site's future uses through design. Key issues that informed our design decisions are public access, circulation, safety, education, wildlife habitat, topography, aesthetics, planting design, site history, local knowledge, community context and stakeholder interests. The final master plan positions Wingfield Pines as a regional showcase for ecological restoration and environmental education that can serve as inspiration for future restoration projects within the tri-state area.
Mary Walton, MLA
Brian Chilcott, MLA