Learn how to play a critical role in advocating and designing for a variety of parks, recreational facilities, and children’s play environments. Best practices will be shared on critical topics including:
Music parks benefit every member of the community, but few communities have a music program available and affordable to everyone. A permanent installation of instruments changes that. A simplified system allows anyone to play, regardless of training or ability, and instruments can be designed for individual and ensemble play. Music transcends age, gender, ethnicity and mobility, and is a gathering force that builds better communities and helps make people kinder.
Describe the many benefits of music on individuals, families, and communities.
Plan, design, and maintain a successful music park for maximum years of use.
Create the desired space utilization for a destination within a park.
In the age of dwindling maintenance departments and budget cuts, outdoor spaces can become environments of bland material palettes, fixed site furnishings, and excessive hardscape. This session will explore altered material choices to fit requirements/maintenance regimens while continuing to support the overall design intent. Learning Objectives:
Understand the approaches landscape architects are using to design within strict maintenance regimens and other applicable requirements.
Learn methods of designing creative spaces in the public realm on a small budget.
Gain insight into specifying the right materials and furnishings for long-term site success
Apply lessons learned from case study examples of innovative workarounds to maintain design intent.
The burgeoning children and nature movement has resulted in requests for professional services in implementing nature play areas. However, designers may hesitate because of professional liability concerns. The panel will present evidence supporting nature play and share insights into designing, implementing, and managing a range of nature play models. Learning Objectives:
Understand research findings supporting the child development impacts of nature play and learning.
Analyze the strengths and limitations of different models of nature play space design.
Learn how to respond to liability concerns for natural play and learning environments.
Become conversant with key precedents and considerations for designing, building, and managing nature play areas.
Equal access to the public realm regardless of disability is the law; but neither the ADA nor accessibility standards and guidelines resolve the challenges of making the complex public environment universally accessible. Panelists will share their insights based on involvement in accessibility projects in Central Park and other relevant experience. Learning Objectives:
Understand the purpose of the ADA--an ongoing obligation under civil rights law to make public program/services universally available—and the implications for planning, design, and stewardship of the public environment.
Examine some fundamental challenges of improving accessibility of complex public places, and corresponding strategies.
Learn how standards and guidelines not specifically address the entirety of the environments we design for can be interpreted/adapted to provide accessibility improvements consistent with the intent of the ADA.
Gain insight into the perspectives and experiences of people across a wide range of abilities and how they support the concept of an inclusive approach to planning, design, and wayfinding.
In five U.S. cities, landscape architects are collaborating with civic leaders and local communities to create places that encourage shared experience among people of all backgrounds. Learn about strategies for designing public places that promote unity and diversity from practitioners working on the ground in Akron, Detroit, Memphis, and Philadelphia.
Find out how practitioners in cities across the United States are designing public places to promote diversity and bridge socioeconomic divides.
Discover how designing for diversity is changing perceptions of and expectations for public assets in Akron, Detroit, Memphis, and Philadelphia.
Learn about design techniques and planning strategies being employed to attract a diverse mix of people to public places and generate diverse constituencies for public assets.
Consider how this ambition may be relevant to projects and initiatives in other cities.
Play environments fulfill a vital role in the physical, social, and cognitive development of their users. These spaces allow kids and adults to engage all their senses to find calm and work together to assess and overcome challenges.
There are two important design trends that have helped amplify the reach and benefits of public play spaces over the past several years - inclusivity and nature play. We now see more parks and playgrounds that celebrate inclusive design. Rather than programming for specific separate user “restrictions,” play environments offer a range of accessibility and challenges that promotes side-by-side play. Integrating natural spaces allows a greater freedom of expression, imagination, creativity, and exploration.
These play environments blur the boundaries that separate people of differing abilities, ages, and interests. Creating inviting play environments that appeal to the largest possible number of people is a way to bring greater social vitality to any community.
Understanding: Participants will learn how play environments differ from traditional design in a way that addresses the needs of a diverse population.
Evidence-Based: Participants will learn how studies in physical therapy, occupational therapy, and biophilic response affect the design of play environments.
Incorporation: Participants will learn how to incorporate strategies in their own projects to create a holistic play environment that benefits a large population of users.
Amplification: Participants will learn how strategies for creating play environments can be applied to schools, healthcare facilities, corporate, and residential landscapes.
This presentation will begin with an overview of seven categories of economic benefits generated by city park systems and how to measure those benefits. The benefit categories include enhanced property value, recreational use, health of area residents, tourism, stormwater infiltration, air pollution removal, and economic development. The Trust for Public Land will present results from cities where they have previously worked and sources of publicly available data you can use.
We know the benefits of investment in parks, open space, and open space networks are both qualitative (felt) and quantitative (observed), yet park champions often need to provide estimates of a return on investment, measured in benefit or value creation. “Value creation,” which is not universally defined, can be project-specific, and an over-emphasis on economics often leaves equity behind. HR&A will discuss examples of building narratives of “public benefits” including both qualitative and quantitative benefits to tell the whole story within the economic and political context so that we can identify and mobilize supporters, build public-private partnerships, and unlock sources of funding.
Given the many stakeholders affected by parks, managing parks, and funding parks, credible impact studies on parks are a very useful tool for planning and in stakeholder management. Conducting multifaceted studies on large parks requires a multidisciplinary approach that goes well beyond quantifying economics. The Balboa Park Conservancy partnered with San Diego State University to look at the many impacts the park has on the economy, the environment and on social issues such as health and youth. The study has served as an objective platform for many dialogues with a diverse group of stakeholders including politicians, the public, and the 85 organizations operating in the park.
Hosted by the ASLA Parks & Recreation Professional Practice Network
Understand the types of economic benefits that can result from parks.
Understand what economic information is publicly available and how to use this information to make an argument in favor of investments in parks.
Articulate the benefits and challenges of working with a university on this type of work.
Understand how a multidisciplinary approach offers a more powerful impact study.
Create a stakeholder management strategy that engages a diverse group in ways that are meaningful to them.
Leveraging the innovative (and kind) spirit of Silicon Valley, Magical Bridge Foundation presents a new model to provide truly inclusive playgrounds and healthier public play spaces for all, regardless of ability, disability, size, or age. With more than 25,000 visitors per month flocking to Palo Alto to play, Magical Bridge is heralded as the nation’s most inclusive play space, with worldwide interest in replicating their model. In this session, the founders of the foundation will give insight into their success, expansion throughout the Bay Area (and the nation), and the extensive community they serve, including those living with physical and cognitive disabilities, autism, visual and auditory impairments, the medically fragile, and the aging population. Learn about their process and guidelines for success and understand how they infuse Silicon Valley innovation into inclusive playground design.
Learn how to leverage the success of Magical Bridge Playground to enhance the quality and quantity of outdoor play time in the communities you serve, going way beyond ADA standards.
Understand the success of Magical Bridge Playground and Foundation, and the broad community they serve, including those living with physical and cognitive disabilities, autism, visual and auditory impairments, the medically fragile, and the aging population.
Take lessons learned from mindfully-designed Magical Bridge Playground in Palo Alto and apply these processes and guidelines to create truly inclusive experiences in your projects.
Accessible play environments have received considerable attention in recent practice, yet little comparative research has been done evaluating the use of specific park and playground features. This research evaluates the value of Universal Design (UD) in playgrounds in a comparative study using new graphic methods addressing the primary UD question and overall physical activity in the park environment. The evidence-based findings can support public policy for the promotion of community-wide healthy active living.
Explain the multi-faceted benefits of Universal Design in playground environments.
Describe the research-grounded basis for the conclusions presented.
Apply behavior observation techniques in public outdoor open space.
This presentation focuses on inclusive play in outdoor playgrounds. Based on observations, interviews and research in a universal design public playground and a playground at a school for children with disabilities, we have deducted a series of recommendations for inclusive, universal play design for all abilities. One of the main considerations of the presentation is that we do harm when we underestimate the abilities of children with disabilities. As all other children, they love the thrill of physical play such as spinning, sliding, and swinging. The presentation will go through cases of good universal playground designs and functional playground equipment design features. Finally, we will touch upon working within the framework of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), and beyond.
Learn key elements of inclusive play and universal design, based on observations and research with users and care givers.
Get new insights on playground planning and play equipment functionality.
Learn about the policy dimension of planning inclusive playgrounds, beyond the ADA.
Get an adult user perspective on accessibility and usability in public play areas.
Learn how the landscape architect can implement policies and insights of users in the final solution.
Understand how to advocate for standard solutions that fit all user groups.