Embraced by rolling hills between Germantown and the Wissahickon, Alden Park Manor is a living community showcasing three Jacobean Revival-style apartment towers. The historic property is distinguished on both national and Philadelphia historic registers, and also plays host to woodlands, streams and residential amenities. Roofmeadow developed landscape improvements at entryways for vehicles and pedestrians, restored planted areas and introduced new plantings, and designed a new outdoor pool and dog park. From the beginning, the design process focused on achieving a perfect marriage between site improvements and the splendid historic character of the property. At entryways, planting designs preserved heritage plants while introducing sweeps of native perennials underneath. This reduced maintenance-intensive areas of open mulch and rotating annuals. Traffic patterns were simplified to reinforce the welcoming quality at entryways. The outdoor pool was sited at a plateau of lawn that extended from a historic English-style garden, and its materials and geometries were selected to harmonize with its garden context. The dog park was deftly inserted into a mature forested area, so a non-native shrub layer was replaced with a carpet of wood chips while the established native trees remained.
Throughout the project, Roofmeadow’s design approach focused on shaping geometries to mediate between the scales of urban sidewalk and grand tower, and introducing vegetation communities to carry forward the site’s grand legacy.