THE UNIVERSITY OF DENVER
STEM Green is garden and pinetum that instills health for students, faculty, and staff at the University of Denver by providing a place for reflection and contemplation to support the rigors of academic life. Working closely with university architect Mark Rodgers, Didier Design Studio developed a design that would promote a sense of immersion and connection with the natural world. From tall evergreens to dense shrubs and soft groundcover, the selection of plantings compose a layered landscape offering varying levels of enclosure and seasonal change. The dark, smooth surface of the pond reflects and accentuates the beautiful plants and local stone to create a quiet, contemplative feel. Designed to be active year-round, the pond provides habitat for aquatic and avian life and acts as a cooling pocket within the city.
The design for STEM Green extends beyond the garden scale and takes advantage of opportunities to increase urban biomass, support biodiversity, mitigate heat island effects, improve air and water quality, and provide habitat for key plant and animal species. Showcasing native, rare, and noteworthy plant species, the garden expands the greater campus arboretum by providing a space specifically devoted to pines, firs, and spruces. STEM Green is carefully planned to accommodate small, informal gatherings as well as facilitate connections across campus and provide ample flexible space for large events.