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Hardscape Solutions: A patio with a view

February 24, 2020 -  By

Company: Cornerstone Partners Horticultural Services
Location: Itasca, Ill.

As part of a multimillion renovation project of the interior and exterior of an office building, Cornerstone Partners Horticultural Services (CP Hort) was tasked with creating a quiet, private outdoor area for the building’s tenants that also could be used to host large groups and rented out for entertaining.

For CP Hort, this was a natural fit because the company has maintained the grounds for more than seven years.

A challenge for CP Hort was to define the private area but not obstruct the view of the surrounding pond. CP Hort created a perimeter seating wall to define the private entertaining space from the public walkways that border the building, while keeping an open-air feeling and not impeding the view of the pond and three-tier fountain.

“They were really happy with the outcome of it because you can see the pond and the feature from every angle,” says Jim Turcan, president of CP Hort.

CP Hort used products from Rochester Concrete Products in Rochester, Minn., for all of the project’s hardscape features.

Another highlight of the space is a steel sculpture called Kismet, which means destiny or fate. The steel sculpture was custom fabricated by an artist in California and is accented by floodlights.

The project earned CP Hort a 2019 Silver Award from the National Association of Landscape Professionals’ Awards of Excellence program.

Design/build project by CP Hort (Photo: Cornerstone Partners Horticultural Services)

Photo: Cornerstone Partners Horticultural Services

The original patio layout prior to the renovation.

Design/build project by CP Hort (Photo: Cornerstone Partners Horticultural Services)

Photo: Cornerstone Partners Horticultural Services

Updates to the space include a unique entertainment area with a bocce ball court (foreground, right), cornhole sets (to the right of putting green) and putting green (foreground left).

Design/build project by CP Hort (Photo: Cornerstone Partners Horticultural Services)

Photo: Cornerstone Partners Horticultural Services

A privacy wall separating the patio from the main walkways within the corporate park provides unobstructed views from the patio of the plaza pond.

Design/build project by CP Hort (Photo: Cornerstone Partners Horticultural Services)

Photo: Cornerstone Partners Horticultural Services

A private seating area off of the pergola.

Design/build project by CP Hort (Photo: Cornerstone Partners Horticultural Services)

Photo: Cornerstone Partners Horticultural Services

CP Hort contrasted the hard lines and materials of the surrounding commercial buildings with softer touches and furnishings.

Design/build project by CP Hort (Photo: Cornerstone Partners Horticultural Services)

Photo: Cornerstone Partners Horticultural Services

A view of the patio.

Design/build project by CP Hort (Photo: Cornerstone Partners Horticultural Services)

Photo: Cornerstone Partners Horticultural Services

The plans originally called for a gas grill, but the property did not have a natural gas line. So, a built-in grill and serving island masterfully hides the propane tank used to heat the grill.

Design/build project by CP Hort (Photo: Cornerstone Partners Horticultural Services)

Photo: Cornerstone Partners Horticultural Services

The aluminum pergola structure offers shelter from the southwestern sun while not diminishing the open-air feel of the space. A large metal sculpture, Kismet, was strategically placed within the patio area and surrounding ambient lighting was installed to soften the area in the evening.

Christina Herrick

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