Carrie Morris Arts Production

We installed the Mounds of Fun Lot Design as a way to engage our neighbors in a public green space that would inspire joy and movement.




Volunteer + Professional








Part Shade

Lot Type
Hustling Lawn Bigger Street Trees
Special Lot Condition
Project Name
CMAP Amphitheater + Community Commons

Carrie Morris Arts Production

We installed the Mounds of Fun Lot Design as a way to engage our neighbors in a public green space that would inspire joy and movement.



Project Timeline

Planning was 04/2019 – 08/2019 and installation was 09/2019 – 10/2019 There was a delay to make sure it fit into master plan and figuring out drainage for mounds of fun site and how mounds would impact drainage before we started installation. Bulldozer rental cut time of installation in half.

Project Leader(s):

Carrie Morris


Volunteer + Professional

Who Else Was Involved:

TKMS – trucking company donated screened fill dirt Eagle Landscape – top soil John Brumit, a freelance builder and installation artist We rented a bulldozer and hired 3-5 neighbors for a week that had experience doing handyman/laborer work or with a construction background.

Lot Design:

Mounds of Fun

Lot Type

Hustling LawnBigger Street Trees

Lot Size


Lot Address

2225 Carpenter Ave.

Describe the overall process for transforming your lot.

The planning of how this project fit into our larger plan took longer than I thought. But once we had the plan nailed down the execution of the design was pretty smooth. As a kudos to DFC, the design templates with the elevations, cross sections and contractors package was super helpful. Even for semi-professionals, it provided a visual language that everyone could understand without having to be a contractor.

Did you customize your lot design? If so, how?

Mounds of Fun is part of a larger plan for our overall site. We installed it horizontally instead of vertically across four lots instead of one, and they are a little higher though that was less intentional – we got a lot of dirt and the bulldozer helped contribute to the extra elevation. We didn’t have an exact amount of how much dirt we were getting because the volume in the dump truck could vary. We just knew we needed 50-60 truck full worth of soil. OHM advisors did our larger plan’s civil engineering so we had an estimate. The donated dirt saved us thousands of dollars.

Is your current project part of a larger plan, goal, or initiative within your community?


Purpose of the Project:

To provide family friendly amenities for the neighborhood, a kids playscape, and puppet stages/seating for audience.

Lessons Learned
Land Acquisition

Through the Wayne County Land Bank, we purchased one, another through the State of Michigan Fast Track back in 2012. We became a community partner with the DLBA after purchasing another one or two lots. All the lots were previously publicly owned.

Skill Building

The ability to read elevation on plans, the math involved re: cubic yards of dirt, thinking about growth cycles of small and large vegetation. What it takes to organize community feedback sessions and what are realistic expectations of how people will provide that feedback. Ex: English material for people that aren’t native English speakers. Match the communication methods of people participating.

Community Engagement

We had multiple community outreach sessions at our events, engaging our neighborhood advisory committee. As we talked with committee, they were excited about the planting workshops. CMAP may organize planting workshops to share with larger community as a part of the planned CMAP tree planting. Sharing DFC materials with neighbors and community members was a point of interest.


No extra funding for the lot design was needed. $2500 was saved with the fill dirt being donated. Maybe donated 100 hours of work in this project planning and implementation process. Our staff added an additional 30-40 hours of work for same – quotes for services and materials, etc.


What was challenging about this process, and how did you adapt?

We wanted to make sure drainage was not going to be an issue after we implemented the design. Without the bulldozer, shaping those mounds by hands would have been challenging, renting the dozer was an important part of it.

What is the maintenance plan for this project after its first year?

To make sure there is an even distribution of grass, but the maintenance needs will be absorbed into larger site maintenance.