Irrigation Projects Show Their Conservation Impact

Scott Vaughan

Freese and Nichols designed a money-saving system for the City of Duncanville to use water from Waterview Park (above) to irrigate sports fields at Harrington Park (below).

More than a decade ago, the City of Duncanville wanted to cut spending on irrigation of soccer and baseball fields at their 78-acre Harrington Park. A pond located a mile away was targeted to provide a money-saving alternative water source.

To help the City with this water conservation strategy, a Freese and Nichols team led by Senior Project Manager Robert Kinkel, a TCEQ-licensed irrigator in Mechanical and Plumbing, Fort Worth, designed cost-saving improvements to the 3.2-acre pond in Waterview Park. The upgrades included dredging the overgrown pond; adding a well, floating pond pump and aeration system, plus floating fountains as aesthetic features; and installing more than a mile of pipeline to pump water to the athletic fields.

By coincidence, Troy Goodwin, a designer and TCEQ-licensed irrigator in Mechanical and Plumbing, Fort Worth, recently learned how successful the project proved to be long-term.

The City reports that it has saved $125,000 annually since the project was completed in 2008, an amount that has more than paid for the $1.1 million cost of the well.

“It’s nice to learn when the projects you worked on turn out that well,” said Troy, a member of Freese and Nichols’ six-member plumbing team.

Because water conservation is becoming imperative for municipalities and other public entities, Freese and Nichols continues expanding efforts to help clients find efficiencies, with smart water technology and other adaptations. We provide comprehensive services that cover landscape irrigation, water management and auditing and work across disciplines that include landscape architecture, urban planning and design to improve existing systems and develop new ones, focusing on the use of native and adapted species of landscape plantings.

Freese and Nichols has assisted with water-saving improvements at such North Texas institutions as the Fort Worth Water Gardens, Fort Worth Botanic Garden and Tarrant County College.

Troy now is using Land F/X software to design landscape irrigation systems, and he’s worked on multiple transportation roadways, including the Montgomery Street infrastructure work in conjunction with Fort Worth’s newly opened Dickies Arena in the Cultural District.

Current projects include modifications to the irrigation system at DFW Airport and designing the irrigation component of a multidisciplinary improvement project for Herb Kelleher Way at the Dallas Love Field Airport entrance being led by the landscape architecture team.

Working together on plant selection and watering systems, landscape architects and irrigators can help clients meet their conservation goals.

“The bottom line is water conservation: saving money and being better stewards of resources,” Robert said. “It will become critical as the population increases. The industry is trying to get ahead of it.”