Dobbs Pavilion, University of Missouri - GreenBlue Urban
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Dobbs Pavilion, University of Missouri


Dobbs Pavilion at the University of Missouri in Columbia saw a makeover that started in 2016 and finished in August of 2017 with a brand new building replacement and adjacent parking lot. Since completion, Mizzou (as the university is commonly nicknamed) has been reaping the benefits of steadily maturing trees and the sustainable management of stormwater runoff from it’s parking lot.

These improvements were part of a master plan to renovate the university’s residential area. “The old buildings looked out of place and the upgrade allows us to have more architectural consistency,” explains Frankie Minor, Director of Residential Life at University of Missouri. In addition to the building upgrades, the revitalization also consisted of aesthetic enhancements to the surrounding landscape space including new trees throughout the parking lot.

After excavation of the parking lot took place, GreenBlue Urban’s tree planting soil cell system was assembled on a compacted drainage layer and filled with healthy noncompacted planting soil. The total system provided over 1200 cubic feet of readily available RootSpace for each tree in the parking lot – enough soil volume to grow large stature shade trees.

Once filled with soil, a combined geogrid and filterfabric called GeoGrid is laid on top of the RootSpace system. The base course for the hardscape surface is then laid out and compacted. On this project, a permeable pavement surface was used as the method of channeling stormwater into the system, allowing rainfall to percolate through the permeable pavement and into the uncompacted soil volume within the soil cells.

The trees were planted in 4-foot-wide triangular planter openings, the walls of which were wrapped with ReRoot root management to direct root growth away from the paved surrounding and down into the soil cells. Then, like most trees planted in RootSpace ArborSystem, the RootRain irrigation system was placed around the shoulder of the tree root balls with the surface inlet raising up to the planter opening. The RootRain system provides deep irrigation to the critical rooting zone and eliminates wasteful runoff caused by surface watering. Adequate irrigation is extremely important in the establishment phase of newly planted trees.

With the management of stormwater runoff at source, this scheme helps naturally control stormwater through attenuation within the tree’s soil volume and through evapotranspiration as the trees take up the rainwater as irrigation. Although a popular application for the use of GreenBlue Urban’s RootSpace ArborSystem, this common design brings uncommon sustainability benefits that are not often enough achieved on urban developments.

GreenBlue Urband Ltd

71 Bysham Park Drive
Woodstock, ON N4T 1P1

4405 Anderson Road
Knoxville, TN 37918
United States

E: [email protected]
T: 866-353-2072


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