Discovery Park of America

Union City, Tennessee

Ritchie Smith Associates (RSA) was the team landscape architect for the design of the 50-acre site of Discovery Park of America located in northwest Tennessee. The museum and its surrounding landscape were planned to offer opportunities for education as well as recreation, at a level unsurpassed in the region. RSA designed the overall site and details for several themed outdoor gathering areas, formal display gardens and an amphitheater, to complement the museum and expand activities. Sculpted landforms and a framework planting of trees native to the region transformed the formerly featureless, abandoned cropland. A stream winds through the heart of the park and terminates in a wetland and lake, capturing drainage and enhancing visual appeal. A system of pedestrian paths organizes the site, linking points of interest and allowing for leisurely strolls amidst ornamental planting. RSA collaborated with community representatives, architects and exhibit planners, and shaped a landscape that encourages visitors' exploration and enjoyment.

Award: American Society of Landscape Architects, Tennessee Chapter - Merit Award