Field Notes #1- Hunter Berry

Date: January 26, 2017

 

City Dock Park Observations & Analysis:

Arriving at the park, the weather this morning is cool with a breeze and partly sunny. The park has multiple entrances that allow for easy accessibility and plenty of parking available in large paved and gravel lots. Much of the park space is allotted for parking with paths encompassing the area and docks/piers along the river. There are benches along the dock which could allow lingering to occur while observing the river, however, might be uncomfortable for sitting over a long period. Informative and historical significance signage is placed around the park for visitors to read and learn about its history. While observing, there were a group of women walking on the paths and a dog walker using the limited grass areas (which might be used at warmer times for lingering activities such as picnics). In addition to the dock running parallel with the river, there are three piers that go out over a small section of the river with ledges that are angled for fishing-person(s) to lean against while fishing. Multiple ladders into the river suggest that canoeing, kayaking, or swimming are activities which take place in the park and the boat landing allows river access for boats. A large water ruler conveys the idea of frequent flooding in the park which may be recorded by park staff. Overall, City Dock Park appears to be more of an access point to the river for water activities rather than a destination for lingering or other activities due to its lack of green space and seating.

 

Fredericksburg Rail Station Observations & Analysis:

The station has a modern look with tall glass windows and cement accents along the bottom and rooftops. It has access on both sides of the station and streets for easy accessibility. Street lights line the sidewalks and within the stairwells which might deter crime at night. Planters and small trees also line the sidewalk to create a more aesthetically pleasing design by incorporating natural elements. In addition, there is a green space outside the station and across the small parking lot with more trees, plants, and a large metal art sculpture. Within the station there are signs, rails, and gates blocking access underneath, however, they have been ignored as graffiti is on the walls beyond the blocking mechanisms. There is also electrical wiring to stop birds from nesting within the stations interior. On the station’s platform, there are benches with and without backs for seating, ticket kiosks instead of ticket booths, signage, and newspaper receptacles. The platform’s characteristics appear to move people through the space and not inspire lingering. For the train traveler’s safety, there are large bumps leading up to the rail tracks to alert anyone from crossing or falling. Overall, the station seems to have been planned for safety and general aesthetics while allowing the travelers to be self-determined with little interaction with any station staff.

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