3North’s design envisioned a restored park that would function as part student quadrangle for Virginia Commonwealth University, part urban green, and part festival park. The proposed design actively honors the park’s rich history while integrating 21st century infrastructure and programming amenities. For this project, 3North’s role has extended well beyond professional design services to include extensive project advocacy and fund development support. As part of this, 3North helped envision and craft the new Monroe Park Conservancy as a public-private partnership for fundraising and the ongoing governance and operations of the park.
In 2018, 3North completed the renovation of this historic urban park. The utility infrastructure of the park was upgraded while preserving historic elements. The Checkers House, first built in 1939, was renovated to include a shared substation for Virginia Commonwealth University, City of Richmond Police, and additional space for a food and coffee vendor. Another park feature restored was the central cast iron fountain. Newly built, the Laurel Street event pavilion is a covered flexible event space that connects the Altria theater to Monroe Park. Various sustainable site features we also incorporated such as, bioretention plants, LED lighting for pedestrian pathways, absorptive pavers located at each entryway, native plants, and recycled materials.