Kirke Park was recently named a two-star certified site by the Sustainable Sites Initiative (SITES) program, making it one of only 34 projects to be certified nationwide.
SITES was started through the United States Botanic Garden, Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center at the University of Texas at Austin and the American Society of Landscape Architects. The program encourages healthy ecosystems and has developed a comprehensive rating system for sustainable landscapes.
The rating system is broken into categories such as human health/wellbeing, education/performance monitoring and soil/vegetation. Projects must meet 18 prerequisites to be eligible for certification. If a project is eligible, it receives points for every category requirement it satisfies and based on its point value becomes a one-, two-, three- or four-star certified site.
The rating system was developed in collaboration with dozens of sustainability experts, scientists and design professionals from across the nation.
SITES Program Director Danielle Pieranunzi said it’s a great achievement for Kirke Park to receive so many points, considering the park is less than an acre in size.
Kirke Park earned points for its promotion of urban agriculture through its community garden, native plantings, healthy soil and stormwater management and its incorporation of the historic building structures found on-site.
To read more about Kirke Park’s certification, please visit http://www.sustainablesites.org/kirkepark.
The site for Kirke Park was purchased with 2000 Pro Parks Levy funds and was developed with funding from the 2008 Parks & Greens Spaces Levy. SiteWorkshop landscape architects designed the park. It was officially opened in August 2012.