The session and complementary article focus on LAB’s project for the Access Road Ecotone. Driven by a desire to benefit local communities and ecosystems, multiple teams of experts collaborated on the design of a one-and-a-half mile long Department of Homeland Security Access Road in Washington, DC. The planned roadway relieves a congested interstate highway and connects to a large federal campus. The Access Road Ecotone project aims to achieve mutually beneficial outcomes for both human and natural environments, as it encourages neighborhood revitalization with a bicycle and pedestrian path and benefits local insects and birds with native groupings of plantings. This case study is an account and discussion of the collaborative design method, with a focus on innovation in infrastructure planting design and the resulting end-user experience.
When built, the Access Road Ecotone will be the largest Low-Impact Development facility and constructed meadow in the District. Stormwater runoff will be treated, neighborhood residents will benefit from access to the project, and local/migratory birds and insects will benefit from improved habitat. The resulting landscape offers opportunities as a demonstration site or testing ground for further research.
Primary Author/Presenter is Michael W. Smith. Secondary Authors are Marjorie Woodbury – who is also presenting – and Kelly Gill from Xerces Society.
ICOET (International Conference on Ecology & Transportation) is the foremost interdisciplinary, interagency supported conference addressing the broad range of ecological issues related to transportation systems in all modes. Experts in transportation development, related scientific study, policy issues, and administrative processes gather at ICOET to share current research, quality applications, and best practices that can enhance both the project development process and the ecological sustainability of all transportation modes.
The ICOET program includes podium presentations, posters, field trips, and exhibits on topics of interest to researchers, biologists, engineers, planners, project managers, administrators, and policy makers. Hundreds of professionals—representing government, Tribal, academic, nongovernmental, and private industry organizations—from the United States and more than 20 countries regularly attend ICOET.