- 147,000 sq ft permeable paver parking lot (over 715,000 pavers!)
- Permeable paver walkways and courtyard
- Large boulder walls
- Stone waterfalls, storm water outfalls, and a half-mile stream bed
- A variety of trees, plants, shrubs, flowers, sod, seed, and ground cover
In 2012, Rivertop Contracting was chosen as the landscape contractor-of-choice for the new Sierra Nevada Brewery in Mills River, NC. The client desired a similar feel to their Chico, California location but it was just as important for the site to blend in with the area’s natural landscape. The intent was for many of the various landscaped areas to, in essence, “return to nature.” The designers created a flawless landscape plan that included several natural elements such as stone, boulders, pavers, and a variety of plants, shrubs and trees indigenous to the area.
Our primary challenge presented by existing conditions was logistics. Landscaping is generally the last trade on site however due to scheduling constraints we did not have that luxury. In fact, the day we began installation there were numerous contractors (cranes, box trucks, etc) working in and around the immediate area where we were to install 147,000 square feet of pervious pavers. Ensuring proper materials and equipment arrive on time and are placed in correct staging areas is a constant concern. Our approach to these obstacles was regular, clear, and concise communication amongst employees, subcontractors, and vendors so that the most efficient use of time and space was realized.
The hardscape portion included a parking lot, walkways, a courtyard and several boulder walls. The client emphasized “green” practices, and as a result, the paver parking area was installed so drainage could be collected for water reclamation. The chosen paver product has the ability to withstand heavy vehicular traffic, has a favorable reduction in water run-off, features long-lasting durability, and is comfortable underfoot, therefore meeting ADA requirements. Colors included Ardennes grey, slate grey, Westerwood Blend, and a Limestone chosen for LEED Certification.
Managing expectations in conjunction with the weather was the biggest difficulty we encountered. In 2013, Mills River had 85 inches of rain – twice that of the average annual rainfall. Our crews generally work 10 hour days Monday-Thursday. When timelines or situations dictated, we worked Fridays, Saturdays and the occasional Sunday. Our primary deadline for 2014 was the culmination of a large celebratory event on August 3. Thankfully, we planned accordingly and were able to have nearly every employee (55+) on site in an effort to ensure our responsibilities were met… and the event was a complete success!