Recognizing that all kids love to play, the Jackson Park Inclusive Playground is designed to remove the barriers that limit children of different abilities from engaging in play activities together. Through the incorporation of colors, textures, sounds, motions, quiet spaces and accessible equipment, the inclusive playground aims to provide a fun, safe environment where children can be social, develop skills, work on sensory challenges, learn from each other and most of all, have fun together. The playground features a wheelchair accessible composite structure, a multiple occupant saucer swing, a merry-go-round, musical instruments and a tunnel mound, all of which will be installed over a unitary protective surfacing similar to artificial grass with an enclosed perimeter.
Earlier this year, a special project team comprised of employees in the Parks and Streets Divisions replaced a series of sidewalks throughout Jackson Park. Following those sidewalk improvements, the future site of the inclusive playground is now 100% ADA accessible, as are other facilities and structures in Jackson Park, including the restrooms, both shelter houses, and various playgrounds.
The inclusive playground project was developed and vetted though the City’s Parks & Forestry Board over the last couple of years. The project also benefited from a $32,000 grant from Live Well Live Atchison by way of their partnership with Blue Cross Blue Shield’s “Pathways to a Healthy Kansas” program. In exchange for the grant funds, the City adopted a tobacco free playgrounds ordinance in August of 2018.
Cost: About $165,000
Funding: The City is thrilled to have the partnership of Live Well Live Atchison on this project. Live Well is providing $32,000 in funding through their participation in the Blue Cross Blue Shield Pathways to a Healthy Kansas initiative. In exchange, the City has adopted a “tobacco free playground” ordinance, prohibiting the use of tobacco in close proximity to any of the City’s playground facilities.
The City’s ADA Advisory Board has opted to contribute their $25,000 in 2018 funding toward the project. Additionally, the City secured just under $3,000 from the Courtney S. Turner Trust.
Location: Jackson Park
Contractor: AB Creative
Status: Construction / Site Restoration
Construction Start Date: Fall 2018
Completion Date: January 2019