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Behnke LA
Cleveland, Ohio

Behnke Landscape Architecture, Cleveland, Ohio Since 1958, clients have been seeking Behnke Landscape Architecture's expert technical and design advice. Its three principals and five associates have consistently come up with landscape solutions that blend beauty with responsibility. Behnke has 14 national and more than 35 state and local awards to its credit. Its projects range from athletic facilities, schools and universities, to botanical gardens, streetscapes and medical centers. It has also landscaped mixed-use and housing developments, parks and greenways.

Scranton Flats Towpath Trail, Cleveland, Ohio
The Scranton Flats Towpath Trail is also an urban restoration project in the heart of the industrial Cuyahoga River Valley. It was designed mainly to extend the Towpath Multipurpose Trail into the city of Cleveland, and restore fish and wildlife habitats along the Cuyahoga River. Among other improvements, 3,000 feet of the river's edge and 4.75 acres of upland were restored; 4,225 feet of all-purpose trail was installed; steel bulkheads 75 years old were removed; and the river's edge was pulled back, gently sloped and planted with native plant species.

Ohio Western Reserve National Cemetery, Rittman, Ohio
With the aging of World War II veterans, the Department of Veterans Affairs recognized the need for a new national cemetery in northeast Ohio. Behnke was hired to develop a master plan for four phases of development that would ultimately provide enough burial space for approximately 10,000 eligible veterans and their dependents. Behnke was also responsible for the first phase of construction.

East Falls Riverwalk, Elyria, Ohio
Behnke developed a master plan and then implemented the first phase of the East Falls Riverwalk. The existing conditions included steep sandstone cliffs and unstable hillsides. Much of the development had to be elevated as a boardwalk to meet ADA standards. The observation deck was built on top of a foundation of an old mill, and a second deck was cantilevered from a sandstone bench. In spots where neither a boardwalk nor concrete walkway would work, pre-engineered bridges were installed to span vertical cliffs. The significance of this project was that it provided safe and attractive access to the most important natural resource in the city of Elyria. A grant required that a minimum of $200,000 worth of recycled materials be used on this project. So Behnke incorporated recycled plastic lumber, steel, concrete aggregate and used Belgian blocks into the design.

Kent State University Child Development Center Outdoor Learning Laboratory, Kent, Ohio
The Outdoor Learning Laboratory opened in 2013 and is a mixture of nature interwoven with man-made elements. It has five main features: an area for nature play that includes a stream, sandbox and stepping stones, where kids can make mud cakes, climb and ride tricycles; a place for painting, drawing, sculpting, making music and performing on an amphitheater stage; a garden with raised beds and composter; a site where children can play tag, kickball, soccer and other games; and a nature station with a small pond and wetland.

St. Joseph Healing Garden, Warren, Ohio
The St. Joseph Development Foundation retained Behnke to design a "healing garden" on the grounds of the St. Joseph Warren Hospital. Patients, visitors and staff use the site for spiritual, emotional and physical healing, especially patients in the Cancer Center who are undergoing chemotherapy. Water is featured extensively throughout the garden, as are natural materials, mainly stone and wood, spiritual and inspirational sculptures and verses, and plant material that attracts birds and butterflies.

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May 26, 2019, 3:06 pm PDT

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