Temecula City Council has approved Phase One of a $1.4 million special needs playground equipment project.
The City Council has approved the inclusive playground designed by San Diego commercial playground equipment company, Pacific Play Systems, Inc. for Margarita Park. Located in the heart of Temecula, the new playground facility will replace the old playground and will also include a “splash pad”. Earlier this week, during their first bi-monthly meeting, Temecula City Council in a vote of 4-0 approved allocating $875,000 toward building the first phase of this project, to start immediately. The new Margarita Community Park inclusive playground facility will be “another jewel in the crown” according to Councilman Jeff Comerchero and the only facility out of the city’s 39 parks, particularly designed to focus on children with special needs, as reported by Press Enterprise, a local Riverside newspaper and media company.
The new Margarita Community Park playground project has been in the works for several months and has been championed by Mayor Mike Naggar who has worked for years to raise awareness of the need to provide more inclusive playgrounds for children with special needs. Once completed, this project will pave the way for future projects and will set an example of how a park can be designed to be highly inclusive, while at the same time provide enough fun and challenge for all children, allowing them to play side by side and participate in the art of play and develop social skills as well as motor skills.
“Our goal is to carefully design each and every aspect of this park so that the end result becomes a safe and welcoming environment for children within the autistic spectrum as well as other children with varying degrees of physical and mental disabilities, so that they can play side by side with other children in a family-friendly, yet structured environment”, says Bemanian, who heads the design team for this project at Pacific Play Systems.
The design team for this project consists of Pacific Play Systems, design builder for the project, Playcraft Systems, the playground equipment manufacturer, Rain Drop Products, LLC, the splash pad equipment supplier and David Neault Associates, Inc., a local Temecula based Landscape Architectural firm. Pacific Play Systems also intends to work with a local engineering firm to facilitate approval of the plans for the splash pad project through the City and the Health Department. Finally, Perpetual Parks Playgrounds, another local Temecula company, will be installing the playground equipment.
Phase One of this project will include a playground designed for children in the 2-5 age group, as well as one for children in the 5-8 age group, along with swings, several free-standing play components, seating, picnic areas, a sand and water play area, a sensory garden, pavement, fencing and the infrastructure needed for Phase Two, the splash pad. Phase Two’s approximate cost has been estimated around $500,000, including the splash pad equipment, sanitation and filtration equipment and installation, and landscape and hardscape improvements.
Located in Carlsbad, California, Pacific Play Systems is the sole distributor of Playcraft Systems for southern California. Playcraft is a west coast manufacturer of high quality commercial playground equipment and site furnishings. Pacific Play Systems specializes in providing a turnkey process to its clients which encompasses all that is needed to make their projects a reality, including but not limited to planning, design, supply of equipment, surfacing, site furnishings, shade, installation and more. The special needs playground for the City of Temecula will be the third special needs playground project completed by Pacific Play Systems since last year. The company has also furnished and installed an inclusive universal design playground for the United Children’s Academy in North Hollywood in the summer of 2012, as well as a design build project consisting of the supply and installation of an inclusive playground for the Marine Corp Community Services in San Diego, completed earlier this year.