City of Colorado Springs / Environmental Sustainability / News

Cascade Smartscape Challenge
Thursday, January 19, 2012

Cascade Smartscape Challenge title graphic

Seeking regional talent to create beautiful & sustainable Streetscape Solution for Cascade median 

The City of Colorado Springs is seeking regional talent to compete in the Cascade SmartScape Challenge sponsored by Xerox. Led by City Councilmember Brandy Williams and Mayor Bach’s Streetscape Solutions Team Leader Dave Munger, the competition seeks to recruit local professionals to help create a streetscape design concept for the future.  The demonstration’s goal is to enhance our community and beautify a central location in downtown Colorado Springs while demonstrating environmental and financial sustainability.  The median on Cascade Avenue between Pikes Peak Avenue and Colorado Avenue will be redesigned as a result of this community competition.

“Downtown medians suffered as a result of the economic downturn.  Bluegrass and water-intensive trees may have worked in a thriving economy, but times have changed and we’re looking to design our medians with creative, sustainable concepts to keep our city looking beautiful into the future,” says City Councilmember Brandy Williams. “There are a lot of talented professionals in this community who can help us do that.”

Implementation of the winning design will be paid for by Xerox’s community donation of $20,000, a public-private partnership.  City resources such as mulch and salvaged rocks are also available for use on this project. The winning design will receive $1,000 from Xerox and will be recognized through on-site signage and City publicity.

The Mayor’s Streetscapes Solutions Team is seeking more community partners to beautify streetscapes around Colorado Springs.

“We need partnerships to create a more beautiful city.  It’s going to take all of us to make our streets a source of pride for our community,” says Dave Munger. “This is a great pilot project for the Streetscapes Solutions Team and we’re excited to showcase what can happen when we all work together.”

Xerox’s $21,000 donation is “value added” to their contract with the City of Colorado Springs to provide print management services for the organization. “Value added” partnerships are something the City’s Contracting Office looks for from companies doing business with the City.

“Xerox partnering with the City of Colorado Springs demonstrates how large corporations can deliver lasting economic and environmental benefits to the community where we live and work,” says Melissa Hart with Xerox.  “We’re excited to sponsor this project and work with local talent to create something great for our city.”

Entrants in the design competition are not required to be licensed landscape architecture professionals but should have significant landscape planning, design, irrigation and maintenance background or partners who can provide this experience.  To enter the Cascade SmartScape Challenge, visit for more information and obtain the Request for Proposal (RFP). 

Schedule & Deadlines

  • Submission Deadline: Friday, March 16, 2012, 3 pm
  • Evaluation Period: March 26 – April 6
  • Winner Notification: April 11-13
  • Community Announcements: In celebration of Earth Day, April 20 and 21

Each entry will be evaluated by a team of community professionals, City staff and elected officials.  The winner will be chosen by the highest ranking based on the following criteria: imparting a sense of place, dramatic and cutting edge design, using sustainable and best management principles, infiltration of water and permeable elements, splash border, plant material, Xerox sign design and placement, use of reused/recycled/local materials, fine/accent grading, accent lighting, use of hardscape/boulders/mulches, treatment of public art, irrigation and water budget, maintenance plan/schedule and cost.