1203 Landscape and Outdoor Lighting
This project is a student rental property located in downtown Austin near the University of Texas campus. We were responsible for all phases of the landscape design and installation including plantings, irrigation, and the outdoor lighting. Due to the fact this is an income property, we needed to create not only a visually attractive landscape but a low maintenance one as well. We did this through the use of various aggregates, drip irrigation and low maintenance plants. The lack of turf reduces the amount of water required for the landscape as well as monthly turf care costs. We used pea gravel and crushed basalt to give some variation in the mulch covering to avoid massive expanses of aggregates.
For the outdoor lighting design our goal was to maximize the outdoor lighting impact while keeping our fixture counts lower for budget reasons. We needed to provide ambient light for the use of the outdoor spaces and safety as well as attractive aesthetics and curb appeal. The key landscape features on the property are two very large heritage Live Oaks on the property, providing a framework along the front walkway and back porch. We used pendants mounted throughout the branches to provide downlighting with some side-lighting effects from the small perforations in the shades. This side-lighting provides low level highlights on the branch structure of the Oaks, creating a visual ceiling at night and adding to the beauty of the property at night. We used both 3000K and 4000K lamps to provide a bit of contrast and drama in an otherwise high ambient light area due to nearby street lights. Regular maintenance and energy use is reduced through the use of high quality LED lamps throughout and astronomical timers which reduce the need to continually adjust the on/off times of the outdoor lighting as the daylight hours change throughout the year.