Pre-Summit Field Trip


Download handout here .

We had such an exciting and educational tour of stormwater and LID projects this past February! Please find more detailed information about each of the sites we visited below. You can also find out more on our Facebook Page , Land and Water Summit. Please share any photos you took here .

Date: Wednesday February 21st


Site Location
San Mateo Pavilions I-40 & San Mateo
Winrock Town Center I-40 & Louisiana
Tijeras Crek Remediation Project I-40 & NM337
Navajo Elementary School Coors & Rio Bravo
Ambassador Edward L. Romero Park Rio Bravo, east of Rio Grande river

Lunch provided by: Odoo image and text block

Information about the sites:

San Mateo Pavilions

This 20-acre shopping center is located at the northwest corner of Interstate 40 and San Mateo Blvd. in Albuquerque, New Mexico. A Master Plan developed for the project required that the development address all of the requirements of the City of Albuquerque Development Review Board and meet the immediate needs of Albuquerque Metropolitan Arroyo Flood Control Authority (AMAFCA) as well as observing NMDOT regulations. A master landscaping and grading and drainage plan was prepared and implemented using an innovative design that included harvesting water within the parking areas.

The Landscape Architects at Sites Southwest worked closely with the project engineers to address water harvesting and pedestrian circulation issues early in the design process. Depressed parking islands harvest water through slotted drains at the perimeter. The collected water from 5 year storm events is retained until it is used by landscaping or evaporates. Flows from larger storm events bypass these bioretention islands and are channeled into major drainage facilities offsite. Cobblestone surfaces within the parking islands improve the longevity of plantings and the islands’ drainage function. Shoppers are guided to retail locations via wide pedestrian ways furnished with benches and waste receptacles. A streetscape provides attractive sidewalks that meander through planted areas along the main access road fronting the site. Loading docks located along I-40 at the rear of the site are screened from view by landscaping which uses a native and xeric plant palette somewhat different from those normally employed in commercial projects in the Albuquerque area at the time (1995). These innovations required adjustments in maintenance, for example, maintaining the landscaping used in the parking area is geared more toward debris collection than to maintaining irrigation. In some areas, specifically on south facing sides of buildings, a modified plant palette incorporates plants like Arizona Rosewood, which flourish in other ecosystems but can only grow in our high desert environment in specific microclimates. This experimental approach to plant use has proven to be a very successful and eye catching way of giving a regional flare to this commercial property.

As one of Albuquerque’s first commercial xeriscapes, the Pavilions landscape has created a sustainable approach to long-term value for the property owners.

Winrock Town Center

Winrock will be an 83 acre high density, mixed use, urban environment with approximately 1.25 million square feet of retail, health and entertainment space, 750 residential units, 150 hotel rooms and several thousand square feet of office space. Winrock will be a complete live, work, play environment. It will also focus on energy, water, agriculture, transportation in an urban environment and the interconnected urban ecosystems that emerge. Winrock will be a working laboratory of resource management. We want New Mexico to lead the nation in the export of goods and services in the field of resource management.

Winrock’s retail and entertainment mix will attract local residents and visitors alike. As such, it will present an excellent opportunity to create awareness of better conservation and utilization of resources.

Programs in the four areas of concentration


  • On-site waste-water treatment plant that will provide reclaimed water for irrigation, toilet flushing and water features.

  • Rainwater capture and storage.

  • Available reclaimed water for the Water Authority to use for irrigation of public parks and surrounding area.


  • 3 megawatts of Photovoltaic electricity and other sources of on-site generated electricity.

  • Solar panels built into custom store awnings providing electricity and as well as a unique look.


  • Creating a pedestrian friendly environment.

  • Planning a work/live/play and “park once” environment that reduces automobile travel.

  • Inter and intra property circulators to transport people within Winrock and around Uptown.

  • A bicycle share system with strategically located stations to provide visitors with other transportation options.

  • Parking garage receiving rooms that collect and hold customer packages, allowing customers to continue shopping without carrying their packages to their vehicle. This program will encourage customers to use the alternative transportation options in Uptown to continue shopping.


  • Planting fruit trees and vegetables instead of ornamentals in most landscape areas.

  • A new paradigm in which growing crops and urban living are not mutually exclusive

  • Irrigation from reclaimed water

  • An on-site farm store for residents and visitors, thus reducing embedded fossil fuel costs

Winrock Town Center flyer, click here .

Tijeras Creek Remediation Project

In the canyon east of Albuquerque, along Tijeras Creek, are reaches where storm water causes problems such as increased flooding, pollution, and erosion. The Tijeras Creek Demonstration and Education Project was designed to treat one of those areas to reduce the impacts of urbanization on the riparian (streamside) environment and on the creek itself. The site, near the A. Montoya-Roosevelt school campus, serves as an example of the methods (called "Best management Practices", or BMPs) used to solve these problems.

The Tijeras Creek Project demonstrates methods that can be used to slow the flows leaving the school grounds and filter out pollutants from the runoff. Structures such as stilling basins (small ponds with protected bottoms) at the drain outlets and swales (shallow, nearly-level trenches) have been combined with replacement plantings, reshaping eroded areas and enhanced infiltration to allow as much water as possible to soak into the soil within the riparian zone. The runoff that reaches Tijeras Creek now flows slower and cleaner again, much like it did before urbanization. The project could have widespread impact, as many streams in New Mexico flow through increasingly populated urban areas.

Jim Brooks and Michael Young who worked the design and construction of the project with teams of volunteers will be our hosts on site to describe the process to date. They will also be on the bus for the entire tour and at the conference so there will be opportunity to have your questions answered.

Navajo Elementary Green Infrastructure Practices

Steve Glass, 01-25-2018

In response to repeated historical flooding events, Albuquerque Public Schools installed green infrastructure practices in 2008 to better manage stormwater runoff on the campus. The school parking lot is nearly 100% permeable pavers (Sustainable Paving Systems Grasscrete), and also includes underground stormwater containment chambers for larger storm events.

Within the campus, Navajo Elementary features disconnect downspouts that discharge to areas planted with native xeric plant species, as well as permeable pavers and a central recessed permeable catchment area around the storm drain inlet in which xeric trees and shrubs have been planted.

Grasscrete Systems Project Profile, click here .

Ambassador Edward L. Romero Park

Ambassador Edward L. Romero Park is a Bernalillo County park and stormwater drainage facility located in the South Valley. Originally the subject of a Graduate Design Studio for UNM’s Master of Landscape Architecture program, the County commissioned Resource Technology, Inc. to integrate the student plans into a cohesive site design. Because there are no adjacent storm drainage facilities, the park was designed to capture the full 100-year storm runoff volume from the surrounding development. The park is graded to slow and spread stormwater across the site, where it is used to support landscaping. Terraced bioswales lined with recycled concrete capture runoff from surrounding streets. The park also features the first use of permeable concrete in the Albuquerque area in the parking stalls.