Our Approach

  • In Progress: Olathe Community Center

    December 18, 2012

    On December 15th at 10:00 am, the City of Olathe broke ground on its new 70,000 square foot community center.

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    • Confluence led the site and landscape design for this new addition to Olathe’s great parks and recreation system. In addition to community center improvements, Confluence also master planned and designed improvements for Stagecoach Park, the setting for this new facility. The first phase of park improvements will be constructed along with the new community center. We’re very proud to have been involved with this legacy project for the Olathe leadership, staff and their citizens.

  • Just Completed: Linden Square

    November 21, 2012

    When the City of Gladstone, Missouri selected Confluence to design their new destination park in the heart of the Village Center, they had a vision for creating a dynamic and flexible event space to serve their community. They had an ambitious schedule for completing the project in time for the holiday season, and anticipated it serving as a catalyst for economic growth and development in the surrounding area. With the grand opening and Mayor’s Christmas Tree lighting ceremony held last night, the project has become an instant success.

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    • The design of the park incorporates a new stage and pavilion structure, an amphitheater, the Farmer’s Market, and a large central plaza space to host community festivals and events.  During the Holiday season, this plaza is transformed into an outdoor ice skating rink. The grand opening ceremony included a huge fireworks display, two children’s choir performances, live television coverage, and free skating for community residents.

      As the design for this park was underway, our design team integrated the potential for development of a future building adjacent to the park. This future was quickly realized when the City partnered with Dr. Pollina and his local children’s dentistry practice to build a new two-story office building. Now under construction and scheduled for completion in Spring 2013, this new facility will further enhance the vitality and character of Gladstone’s emerging Village Center. After the Holiday season, Linden Square’s central plaza space will host a series of concerts, programs, and events.

  • Just Completed: SDSU Design 2025 & Master Plan

    October 8, 2012

    Confluence was hired to provide a master plan for the core area of the 272 acre campus at South Dakota State University (SDSU).

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    • The master plan provides a unified vision for implementing the recommendations within multiple prior planning studies while focusing on the following:

      * Improved campus pedestrian functionality, safety, community connectivity and user experience.

      * Parking re-organization within the campus core.

      * Thoughtful incorporation of planned facility expansions.

      The recommendations within the plan established a set of planning principles for campus improvements. Final recommendations for campus improvements were summarized and a phasing plan for these improvements was established.

  • Just Completed: Clear Creek Trailhead

    October 1, 2012

    The Clear Creek Trailhead is the first trailhead constructed in the Clear Creek Greenbelt and the first official trailhead constructed in the City of Coralville. Its 1,050 square foot roof line provides shelter from the elements or a place to gather before leaving on a trail excursion.

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    • The trailhead features parking, restrooms, shelter area, and kiosk area where trail information can be posted. The trail head also features a place for people to get close to Clear Creek. A water access point allows paddlers to launch small canoes and kayaks or allows visitors to get up close to the creek and enjoy watching the water run by or the minnows playing tag in the shallows.

  • In Progress: West Central Valley Athletic Complex

    August 31, 2012

    The recently constructed high school for the West Central Valley community school district sits atop a hill on the east side of Stuart, Iowa with the remainder of the property owned by the district soon to be the home to a new football/track/soccer stadium, baseball stadium, softball stadium, and two multi-purpose practice fields.

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    • The district awarded the athletic complex protion of the project to Confluence multi-disciplinary team in the middle of June 2012. After a series of design meetings, the owner agreed on a master plan and budget. Once approved, our team completed construction documents and issued a bid set on August 2, 2012. Bids were returned on August 23, 2012 and we anticipate construction to begin on September 4, 2012. Subsequent bid packages are scheduled to go out prior to the end of September, and we look forward to a grand opening of the stadium for the first football game in the fall of 2013. Go Wildcats!!

  • Changes to Walnut Street

    August 8, 2012

    Confluence was selected as part of a multi-disciplinary team to perform a conceptual study for the redevelopment of the 10-block corridor.

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    • For more information regarding this exciting new project, please see the article from the Business Record at http://bit.ly/LUrnBW

  • In Progress: Mercy Medical Healing Gardens

    June 22, 2012

    Mercy Foundation hired Confluence to develop a sensitive outdoor space to serve their patients undergoing treatment.

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    • The ultimate goal for the space was to develop a quiet, private and safe space to aid in healing and spiritual renewal. To achieve this end, we developed an outdoor space that was carefully set into the existing natural slope to give the space greater protection from the adjacent streetscape. This change of elevation was managed by the introduction of a strong, but elegant stone retaining wall that provides the backbone for the overall design geometry. A walkway follows the strong geometry of the wall and connects two separate “rooms”. A waterfall feature begins at one end of the project and the resulting brook meanders under and alongside the walk to the gathering space and terminating water feature pool at the other end.


  • University of Iowa: Hancher Auditorium

    May 3, 2012

    Confluence, in conjunction with Balmori Associates, is in design development for the New Hancher Auditorium for the University of Iowa. The recently completed Arts Campus Master Plan has set the framework for the site design with an emphasis on sustainability and storm water management.

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    • Confluence is assisting in analyzing different LEED strategies to develop a high performance sustainable LEED certified building. Current work in progress includes building site location study, parking analysis, master grading and conceptual planting plan.

  • In Progress: Downtown River Greenway Phase II

    March 22, 2012

    With Phase I now complete, Confluence is working on Phase II of the Downtown River Green project in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

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    • Construction is slated to start this summer with project completion in Spring 2013, which is in conjunction with a new hotel redevelopment project along the east bank of the river.

      This $2.5 million construction project will be located where an existing parking garage was built over the river in the 1960’s. The parking garage is being removed this spring to re-open up the river views and corridor.

      Phase II features a continuation of quartzite stone construction materials from Phase I. Also included are new steps and ramps to make the river more accessible, a wider primary river walk, interpretive signage features, lighting, landscaping, and a plaza space with a water feature.

  • In Progress: ACT Courtyard

    February 13, 2012

    Confluence is currently working with ACT (American College Testing) to redesign their central campus courtyard.

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    • The space is essentially surrounded on three sides by two buildings, the Ferguson Building framing the west and a northwest segment and the Davidson Building framing the east and northeast segment.  An underground tunnel connects the two wings. The two building complexes including the courtyard were designed and constructed in the mid 1980’s.  ACT has a very active and well funded grounds maintenance program. The entire campus is well organized, meticulously manicured and sends a strong positive message to any visitor that arrives. 

      We were asked to walk the courtyard with the client to discuss the site concerns that currently exist:

      –   Severe ground moisture problems leading to plant fatalities and plaza hardscape failures.

      –   Inadequate lighting

      –   Underuse of the courtyard by staff

      The existing courtyard geometry is neat and organized but fairly stiff. Our directive was to change the entire look and feel of the space and bring new design energy into play. The first phase of our work was to develop an overall master plan for the new courtyard. After many meetings with staff, a final design was presented to the client. The new design introduces a much more relaxed landscape architectural theme with bed lines that sweep through the space connecting walkways, tree groves and water features while providing wonderful views and inviting pleasant places to sit and enjoy the outdoors.

      We are currently nearing Design Development Phase completion and will have the final Construction Document set available for selected contractors by March 1st. Construction is currently slated to be done in early July.