When the City Council of Newhall, California asked Pacific Coast Land Design (PCLD) to bring new life to their economically flagging Main Street, the firm looked to the area’s past to provide it with a brighter future. The city’s storied history as a Native American trading center, an outpost of the Wild West, and then a backdrop for the western films of the early 20th century gave PCLD plenty of material to construct an engaging, pedestrian-friendly experience that they’ve termed Old Town Newhall.
“The area’s rural, equestrian character and distinctive past are important community values that were almost lost,” says PCLD Principal Chris Roberts. “We wanted to strengthen the community’s heritage and instill a new sense of pride in downtown Newhall.” To accomplish this, the firm incorporated elements from the surrounding landscape into their Wild West-themed design, placing bollards emulating hewn local stone from a nearby creek alongside wooden lodge pole horse ties to give the area a uniquely “Newhall” aesthetic.
PCLD’s dedication to capturing the essence of Newhall in their site plan is matched only by their commitment to including sustainable elements in their design. Old Town Newhall’s complex, multi-faceted irrigation system works to preserve as much water as possible, and the plants used in their design are native or regionally adapted to the area’s climate. Vectorworks Landmark software is an integral part of this process. “We have to provide water budget calculations for each site, which can become time consuming if you don’t have the right tools,” says Mike Zielsdorf, principal at PCLD. “We can input all of our data into our worksheet and use smart calculations in Vectorworks Landmark to do all the budgeting for us; everything happens with the click of a button.”
To learn more about how PCLD transformed Newhall into the thriving community center that it is today, read their success story.