The Tinley Park Public Library administration wanted to create an environment outside of the library that would not only welcome patrons, but also encourage them to spend time outside. The multi-phased landscape project focused on those objectives and included updating the existing fountain and improving the perennial gardens in front of the library.
The previous fountain created safety issues for visitors and did not match the architecture of the library. The newly constructed fountain, which is located on the entrance plaza, allows patrons to sit on the limestone ledge safely and read a book or even splash in the water. The sound of the water welcomes visitors to the library and creates a calm atmosphere. The fountain features large pieces of McGregor Lake outcropping that were carefully placed by the landscape architect. Each of the fountain’s jets has LED lights with multiple colors that rotate throughout the evening.
A myriad of perennials and shrubs were planted to create year-round interest. The project’s objectives were to create an aesthetically pleasing, drought-tolerant, and low-maintenance landscape that would attract pollinators. Plants such as Dark Towers Penstemon, Ninebark, Prairie Dropseed, Aster, Baptisia, and Echinacea have thrived. It is common for visitors to see bees, butterflies, and dragon flies in the gardens. A maintenance plan was developed by the landscape contractor to water plantings as needed during times of drought and also to remove weeds in the gardens two times per month.
The improvements made to the library’s campus have been greatly appreciated by the residents of Tinley Park, library staff, and visitors. The patrons now enjoy the exterior of the library as much as the interior. In fact, many of the library’s events are now held outside. The campus provides a relaxing atmosphere to those wanting to study, get together with friends, or check out the newest novel.
Clarence Davids & Company collaborated with award-winning landscape architecture firm, site design group, ltd. on this project.