Putting the Park in a Parking Lot

Project Description

  • .52 acre parking lot for 20 cars on Boston Post Road in Westbrook Town Center made possible by CT STEEP grant
  • Further supported by Rockfall Foundation grant for educational signage and maintenance
  • .17 acre frontage and back strip designed by Kathy Connolly, Speaking of Landscapes
  • Planted as an urban meadow park using native plants and sustainable practices

Sustainable Practices

  • A previous asphalt system for storm water management so rain does not pollute the nearby stream but drains into a gravel base below,
  • Native species of perennials, grasses, shrub, and trees that can survive after a few years without irrigation, mowing, or fertilizer and will only require seasonal trimming and leaf removal, yet will provide multi-season color and interest, and bird and pollinator support,
  • Trees that aid in storm water management and protect the stream that runs under the area, provide shade for parked cars as they mature, and act as screening from the Boston Post Road for the residential area behind the lot,
  • Solar powered trash and recycling receptacle that calls for pick-up when full reducing unnecessary trash pick-ups,
  • Low-energy lights provide safety with only 10% of energy used by older technology.


  • Need specialized care needed during first three years to trim, prune, weed, and transplant
  • A very different look that was a shock to some but gaining more favor as time goes by
  • Required negotiation with adjoining bank to merge parking area
  • Has opened up unattractive back of buildings to Boston Post road view

Design by Kathy Connolly, Speaking of Landscapes


The Evolution of the Westbrook Town Center Parking Lot

Click here to view/download this slideshow as a movie file:  video_download_icon