City of Medford Oregon / Parks and Recreation / Oregon Hills ParkOregon Hills Park
Located just off of East McAndrews Rd on Tamarack Drive, Medford's newest park is a sustainable park design providing for annual event storm water treatment, a year round stream, solar exposure for buildings, an abundance of native vegetation, and innovative child play options.
Storm Water Management: The design maximizes retention of storm water on site to reduce the amount sent to the storm sewer and restore and create wetlands where appropriate for increased flood control as well as to enhance water quality and reduce pollution by treating storm water through the use of bio-swales.
1) Parking Lot-Pervious Asphalt :
|Water Trough. Half buried in sand.
||Restroom is delivered.
|Wonderful Art Installations
||The Plaza as of February 5, 2013
- storm water will sheet flow into a bio-swale, vegetated with native species. The designed slope and vegetation will encourage infiltration of the water into the soil and filtration of sediments out of the storm water, trapping them in the bio-swale.
b) A pedestrian route
of porous concrete runs along either side of the parking lot; 11 spaces and 2 ADA ones.
2) Discovery Path:
A path with a natural porous surface offers exploratory experiences connecting through a small “oak forest” and then over a “mini-bridge” that spans the drainage from the bio-swale and sand area.
Bridge and Trickle Way- six to eight feet in length and mostly ornamental, the bridge adds to the adventure of the discovery path while allowing the path user to avoid the damp soils which will be saturated or damp from storm water runoff and occasionally drainage from the sand box. The approximately 100 foot long trickle way is planted with native species that thrive in damp soils. Storm water surface flow is directed back into the existing creek through a rock lined channel.
3) Paths & Park Furniture:
- non-traditional benches that sparks the imagination are in place in the view shed and adjacent to play areas.
b) Picnic Table
- placed in locations where the public can enjoy the view shed or in locations where the community can gather within sight of their children playing nearby.
4) Sand Play (lower terrace):
a) Pump, Waterway and Sculpture Table
- The old fashioned hand pumps offer the child a physical challenge, and as such, do not actually end up pumping a large volume of water. The area was designed in such a way that the water from the pump will soak into the soil rather than running off in the waterway. While some children work the pump, others can create little dams made of sand along the contorted path of the play table. The table made of concrete and lined with what appears to be precious stones, ancient fossilized bones and leaves from prehistoric plants is elevated to accommodate children that are in wheel chairs. The table walls offer a platform for art- tiles and stamped patterns embedded in the walls.
b) Seat Walls
- also a platform for art via the placement of tiles and patterns stamped into the concrete walls. Children from the local elementary school can participate in this, creating the art in a school program much as was done at the Medford Skate Park ten years ago.
c) “Buried Treasures”
manufactured dinosaur bones are covered with sand, enabling the children to go on an imaginary archeological expedition by searching through layers of sand for the treasures buried down below.
5) Water Buckets Area
- children will need to work hard pumping two “old fashioned” hand water
pumps at to get potable water to travel up pipes and into a perforated holding area, enabling streams of water to then flow down onto their peers standing below. The potable water from this facility ultimately drains into the municipal sewer system, per State of Oregon health regulations.
6) Upper Terrace:
a) Climbing Art
- large concrete climbing structure.
b) Seat Walls
- also a platform for art via tiles and patterns stamped into the concrete walls. Children from the local elementary school can participate in this, creating the art in a school program much as was done at the Medford Skate Park ten years ago.
- a gathering place where a birthday party can occur near play elements where parents can gather to talk as they watch their children play.
- designed with sky lights, solar lights, low flow fixtures and located near the main play area and parking lot.
9) Oak Hollow w/log tubes
- an existing stand of oak trees provide a semi-private area for children to explore nature and climb through large hollow logs that have been imported from the local forest.
10) Creek-side Discovery Area
- a half dozen steps will lead down through an existing opening in the vegetation to an existing rock slab that will be a great source of entertainment and exploration.
11) Bridge over creek-
located at a natural clearing across the creek so as to avoid damage to existing vegetation, this bridge allows pedestrian access to the future “Phase Three” trail system.
12) Preserve and enhance Native Vegetation Throughout the Park:
No trees were removed and many native trees, shrubs and ground cover were and will continue to be planted and watered through a three to five year establishment period. Native grass and flower seed can be gathered by children in a local school program from the Phase III area that will be ultimately be disturbed during the Public Works excavation of their 100-year detention area.
13) “Little Roxy-Ann” Adventure Hill
- mirrors Roxy-Ann peak which is prominent directly behind to the east. The materials used in building this slope came from the excavation required for the parking lot. Although the area has been inundated by star thistle, it will ultimately be covered with native grasses and wild flowers, using the seeds that are available on site in the area of the Phase Three detention area.
: Much of this Natural play area is accessible to children of varied physical and social abilities.
An ADA accessible route leads from the parking lot through the entire play area to the Shady Oak Discovery Platform. A child in a mobility device may have his or her first opportunity to experience playing in a tree house, tucked up in the canopy of the existing trees.
Children of many abilities will be able to pump water and experience water splashing down on
them. They can sit at the sand water table to play with water running down the contorted water
course, damming it up with sand or just splashing in it.
Because today’s child’s social abilities can vary widely, the design intention is to be inclusive of the many abilities presented by the public, allowing the Asperger's syndrome child who may become over stimulated to have a number of private areas to rest in, or interact quietly with others in. They may be more comfortable speaking to other children through talking tubes, located throughout the play area, than speaking directly to a peer. They may choose to speak through a hole in concrete wall of the sand water table, enjoy the distance provided by the thickness of the wall to feel more at ease, enjoying the colors and texture of the art work in the wall as they do so.
There are also opportunities for inclusion into group actives, where one child pumps water so
others can get wet or watch the water flow down through the sand water table course.