United States of America, Michigan, Bay County, Bay City
Alice and Jack Wirt Public Library (Bay City, Michigan)
Situated on .3 acres, the Outdoor Reading Garden at the Wirt Public Library is a project of the Bay City Garden Club, which raised $50,000 for its development costs. Construction of a new public library was the impetus for the project, but before the garden could be planted, contaminated soil and large pieces of concrete (the site had previously been used for retail) were removed and topsoil was added. Aggregate sidewalks and the foundations for sculpture and benches were installed. A steel 3-D "Green Fence" was erected along two sides of the garden to enclose the space. In June of 2006 the Outdoor Reading Garden was planted. Due to the steel, glass, and concrete surrounding the garden space, the plant materials chosen for this contemporary design are heat and drought tolerant. The garden also includes a sculpture of a young girl carrying a basket of flowers, a large interactive kaleidoscope, and 30 decorative tiles which incorporate the letters of the alphabet and geometric patterns that complement the kaleidoscope designs.
Persons and firms associated with the property include David A. Clark (architect, 2004-2006); Jerry Somalski (landscape designer, 2004-2006); and Fishbeck, Thompson, Carr, & Huber, Inc. (architects, 2004-2006).
The folder includes worksheets, site plans with plant names, photocopies of publications about the library and garden, photocopies of historical documents relating to the site,and additional information.
Garden has been featured in Ryan J. Stanton, "New Blooms," Bay City Times, June 2006
Garden has been featured in Ryan J. Stanton, "Alphabet Art," Bay City Times, May 22, 2007
Garden has been featured in "Outdoor Reading Garden Blooms in Michigan," The Garden Club of America Bulletin, June-July 2007, p. 10