Blacksburg Town Oval

Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello and University of Virginia campus were an influence for the design of the Blacksburg Town Oval. The shape itself, the band of flower gardens on the west of the oval, and site symmetries were all derived from Jefferson’s designs. The vehicular entry to the town was designed so that one was aware of the banding of the project as one drove through: first the forest, then clearing, then flower gardens.

 

The project emphasized places to gather, from covered sitting areas overlooking the oval to a gently sloping hillside for sitting on the north side.  An abandoned rail right-of-way was developed into a bikeway that ran through a gap in the new library building. The parking lot on the east side was fully screened from the oval by a trellised walkway. The trellised walkway was dimensioned to accommodate open air markets that could take place on weekends.

 

The project also acted as a terminus for a linear park that extended through the town and featured several historic houses.