This streetscape design improves safety, honors history, and enhances the experience for people visiting the Old Salem historic district.
Old Salem is one of Winston-Salem’s top attractions and is considered a nationally-significant architectural site. When old trees and root-displaced brick sidewalks put pedestrians at risk, the city asked our teams to design repairs that not just improved safety but adhered to historic preservation requirements.
However, there were other significant issues in the 250-year old historic district—our assessment concluded that the water, sewer, and stormwater systems needed to be rehabilitated or replaced. This infrastructure was located within streets that were already crowded with various utility lines as well as abandoned historic electric trolley car tracks. The solution? Creative design infrastructure approaches to avoid conflicts. This included the open-cut installation of a 42-inch steel encasement pipe directly into an existing storm culvert in a busy roadway.
The streetscape improvement recommendations included historic streetlight and lamppost mock-ups, replacing existing brick sidewalks with new flexible pavements, and adding structural soil tree pits for new trees. When these upgrades are completed, Old Salem will be safer and easier to enjoy, without sacrificing any of its history.
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