Inclusive Playground Equipment Design
At Pacific Play, we specialize in the design, supply and installation of inclusive playgrounds for children of all ages and capabilities with a high degree of ADA accessibility. Design and installation of universal, inclusive playground equipment is our specialty. We supply ADA accessible inclusive playground equipment for schools, parks, apartments and churches. We place a great deal of emphasis on providing equal access for children with various disabilities and design our equipment to maximize ADA accessibility. Boundary free designs using accessible equipment and surfacing capable of providing full ADA accessibility are our goal for each project that we undertake. In designing an ADA accessible play environment, our designers work hard to create barrier free designs which foster interaction and socialization for children at all age and ability levels. From the early design stages to the finish, we strive to offer the very best equipment in the industry. In recent years, the U.S. Access Board has developed specific guidelines in order to ensure that children with disabilities have equal access to various play components. Please see the following link for more information regarding the Americans with Disabilities Act Accessibility Guidelines.
ADA Accessible Routes to Play Area
Boundary free design for inclusive playgrounds starts out with a careful placement of an accessible route which provides ADA access for children with disabilities to various play components placed along its route. Designers shall provide wheelchair accessible surfacing such as PIP rubberized surfacing or engineered wood fibers to connect the ADA accessible playground equipment with its accessible route. A well designed playground connected with an accessible route to points of entry such as buildings and parking lots will create equal access for children of various ages and abilities so that they may socialize and interact with each other within their fun and safe ADA accessible play environment.
Ground Level Play Components
A ground level component is a play component that is not accessible from a deck and is approached and exited at ground level using accessible surfacing such as engineered wood fibers or PIP. Panels, free-standing climbers, spring riders, see saws and swings are a few examples of ground level components. Designers are encouraged to use a variety of ground level components within their design and to spread them throughout the site so that they are not concentrated within close proximity of each other. Per ADA guidelines, at least one of each type of ground level component shall be placed over ADA accessible surfacing for each accessible playground.
Provide Access to Half of the Elevated Components
A transfer station or other means of ADA access shall be used to provide access to the elevated components within an ADA accessible playground in structures having less than 20 elevated play components. Larger structures having more than 20 elevated components shall use ramps to provide wheelchair access to the elevated components. In large structures, a transfer station may be used to access up to 25% of the elevated play components.
In today’s ADA accessible composite play structures, a transfer station is used to provide a transition for disabled children from a wheelchair to the elevated components within the play structure. The maximum rise in elevation of each accessible platform to the next platform shall not be more than 8″. ADA accessible playground safety surfacing shall be used to connect the transfer station to the accessible components such as slides, climbers, etc.