Creekside Commons

San Anselmo, CA


From Creek Park to Creekside Commons

Fletcher Studio is a finalist for the Creekside Commons project. This design proposal is currently under consideration by the City and Community of San Anselmo. The winners will be announced in late June. Creekside Commons revitalizes the existing Creek Park in downtown San Anselmo as Creekside Commons, by expanding on existing resources, integrating new green infrastructure, expanding the park’s open space, all while improving connectivity to downtown. The Common’s retains the park’s current wild feel, while improving site amenities, connectivity, and hydrological performance.

San Anselmo is in the Ross Valley Watershed and drains into the San Francisco Bay. As the north bay region continues to grow, the urbanization of the watershed combined with a legacy of transportation infrastructure and buildings abutting, and in some cases building into and over waterways, has created complicated hydrological scenarios conjoined with an increased demand for access to open space.

The site’s complex intersections, including: traffic, stormwater, flooding, public space, natural areas, local businesses and pedestrian and bicycle pathways present a confluence of possibilities for creating a compelling, inviting, and truly multifaceted public realm that meets the current and future needs of San Anselmo.

We focused on key strategies that provide round-the-clock opportunities for activation. Through a careful study of traffic conditions and parking demands we were able to unlock space and increase the Common’s open space. This allowed for open space to fully engage with the Hub, the town’s former rail junction and current 5-way intersection. A series of pavilions create iconic new structures. A potential traffic roundabout could provide additional stormwater capture and treatment, improve safety, and calm traffic.

A recladded existing bridge and a new bridge create a circuit where the Commons and downtown overlap and share the Creek. As part of the San Anselmo Flood Risk Reduction Project, two buildings that span the Creek will be removed to improve water flow. Their removal further opens up the Commons and downtown to each other.

Universal and natural play elements are distributed throughout the park to create opportunities for all people to play, exercise, and engage with the site.

An elevated deck protects the Redwood Grove from further root compaction while allowing for better stormwater infiltration. The deck offers outlooks, seating, play, and picnic areas in a sheltered environment. The deck connects to the park’s main performance area that will continue to support the Town’s beloved music and movie events while improving access, stage resources, and performance options with a new concert pavilion open to both the Commons and downtown.

Green infrastructure leverages the site’s substantial vertical change to introduce critical capture, treatment, and infiltration that protects the Creek’s steelhead, amphibians, and bird populations.


Creekside Commons, San Anselmo

Neighborhood: Downtown San Anselmo
Date: 2019
Size: 1.1 acres
Client: Reimagine Creek Park Community Advisory Board, Town of San Anselmo
Collaborator: Ware Architects, Lotus Water, CHS Consulting, Matsys
Features: Public Performance, Natural Play, Habitat Restoration, Hydrological Improvements, Green Infrastructure, Stormwater Treatment