MLK Jr. Blvd, Madison WI
Madison is the seat of government for the state of Wisconsin and is also home to the state’s largest university campus. The heart of downtown Madison is where the famed State Street pedestrian mall links the Capital Square. It’s a very popular destination for tourists and has a population upwards of 258,000.
That’s a lot of folks who walk the streets of downtown Madison, and in 2019 the City realized some changes were needed, primarily due to failing sidewalks and some significant issues with maintenance and tripping hazards. City officials were also aware that the existing trees lining the street had struggled considerably, and the Forestry Department was removing and replanting roughly six trees per year.A proposed design was developed for repairs and tree planting along the 100 and 200 blocks of Martin Luther King, Jr Blvd. The plan included replacing all the sidewalk & terrace with standard and colored concrete sidewalk, removing existing trees & grates and planting new trees in an improved growing environment, and other repairs and street amenity upgrades.
City contractors selected GreenBlue Urban to supply the ArborSystem® for installation of the trees, due in large part to the City’s requirements for strength and necessary soil volumes. The ArborSystem, which includes RootSpace® panels, maximizes root growth & tree health, includes load-bearing soil cells with over 97% soil volume, are made from 100% recycled plastic, and offer quick and easy installation.
In fact, according to James Wolfe, P.E., with the City of Madison Engineering Division, “The contractors liked using this product as all of the pieces were connected and simple to install.”
Three installation options were provided to City Planners and option 3 was chosen. All repairs and installations were completed in spring/summer of 2020 and according to Wolfe, the Forestry Department is very happy with the final result. The trees are all thriving and look beautiful in their summer glory as you can see from the final photos.