Our Firm

  • Park Planning with the Public

    April 10, 2017

    Chris Shires presented ‘Park Planning with the Public’ to the 2017 Nebraska Annual Planning Conference in Kearney, Nebraska on March 9th, 2017.

    · view full ·
    • Chris collaborated with J. Benjamin Champ, AICP, EDFP, ASLA, Assistant City Manager & Community Development Director at City of Pleasant Hill, IA on the presentation.  Following the adoption of a new Parks Master Plan in 2015, the City of Pleasant Hill in Central Iowa immediately began the planning of a new community park envisioned in the plan. When designing a new park, it is important to remember the three P’s of planning: Preparation, Participation, and Patience. This session provided an overview of the park planning process and lessons learned for Pleasant Hill Park in Pleasant Hill, Iowa.

  • Welcome Interns!

    January 11, 2017

    Four 4th year ISU students join us as interns. We welcome John Aceto and Jake Spitz to Des Moines, and Zhuojia Lou and Casey Ludwig to Kansas City!

    · view full ·
    • John Aceto, is a 4th year landscape architecture student from Iowa State University and will be interning in the Des Moines office. John is a Des Moines native, born and raised in Urbandale. He loves to play guitar, draw, and travel. He is happy to be back in his homeland of Des Moines, and is excited to learn more about landscape architecture here at Confluence!

      Jake Spitz is from West Bend, WI and will be interning in our Des Moines office. If you ever need to find him, he is most likely on the water. Growing up with a lake for a backyard and spending every second he can outdoors is the driving force behind his passion for landscape architecture.

      Zhuojia Lou will be interning in our Kansas City office. She is from Kaifeng, Henan, a small city in China. She loves dance, and has performed Chinese dance at the Chinese Spring Festival hosted by Chinese Students and Scholars Association for 4 years at ISU. Zhuojia also likes hiking, playing with her puppy, Doubao, and making hand crafts. She also owns an online Etsy shop.

      From Ida Grove, IA, Casey Ludwig will be interning in the Kansas City office. Casey has a passion for the outdoors, and her hobbies include (but are not limited to) snapping a great photo, biking, camping, or taking a last minute trip to find a sweet hiking trail. These activities are some of the many things that have driven her to pursue a degree in landscape architecture in hopes that she can protect and enhance the world we live in!

      Welcome aboard, we are glad to have you!

  • Confluence Honored

    September 22, 2016

    Jon Jacobson, in our Sioux Falls office, accepts the 2016 South Dakota Parks & Recreation Association ‘Community Excellence Award’ at their annual convention last week.

    · view full ·
    • Jon Jacobson and the Confluence team have been an advocate for the Sioux Falls Parks and Recreation Department and the Parks and Recreation field on many different fronts and projects in the past 15 years.  They have been instrumental in gaining consensus on the importance of preservation of green space and park and recreation activities during presentations at public neighborhood meetings, landowner and stakeholder meetings, Park Board and City Council meetings, and through media interviews.  These efforts have helped the South Dakota Parks & Recreation Association secure the funding and support necessary to build new parks, renovate existing parks, and develop the greenway and bike trail system in Sioux Falls.

      In particular, Confluence was instrumental in the implementation of the City of Sioux Falls Greenway and Riverfront Master Plan. They adapted the concepts set forth in the overall master plan to the downtown Sioux Falls greenway stretch and worked with staff and adjacent property owners to identify specific improvements to be considered.  This work included creating a seamless transition from private to public land, providing ADA and direct access to the river, designing points of interest to draw people to the greenway and river, and the eventual modeling of all future phases of the downtown greenway. This collaboration between public and private entities helped sell the project to the public and City Council and secure the funding necessary to kick start phase one of the downtown greenway development.  They also helped secure an environmental trust fund to help fund a portion of the improvements.  The downtown greenway projects have cleaned up a severely impaired stretch of the river greenway and have been a catalyst for over $100M worth of private redevelopment.