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Carmel-Clay Parks playground recognized for inclusivity for children with disabilities

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Posted at 4:22 PM, Oct 06, 2017
and last updated 2017-10-06 16:22:59-04

HAMILTON COUNTY, Ind. --  Since opening last year, West Commons Playground at Central Park in Carmel has won three awards: the 2016 Indiana Parks and Recreation Association - Exceptional Park Design Award, the 2017 Great Lakes Park Training Institute - Facility and Recreation Program Award, and the 2017 INASLA Professional Design Awards – Design Constructed Works Category.

The last award, however, specifically recognizes the new Carmel-Clay Parks playground for its design to be inclusive for children with disabilities.

“This has been our vision since the 2002 Central Park Master Plan, and it's incredibly exciting to see it come to life," said Lindsay Labas, Marketing Director for Carmel Clay Parks & Recreation. “It’s truly an honor to receive an award that showcases the department's mission for inclusive and innovative design principles. It’s been fun to see the community enjoy all that this playground has to offer.”

The park encompasses more than 25,000 square feet and includes numerous areas for climbing, swinging, sliding, exploration, and water play.

By incorporating universal design principles, kids of all abilities are able to enjoy and create memories on this mega-playground.

The playground has a futuristic appearance, which aims to spark the imagination of kids of all ages.

Nestled within a hill that helps keep kids contained and masks the true magnitude of the playground, highlights include:

  • Two 32-foot tall enclosed towers with bridges, walkways and slides
  • Climbing opportunities throughout the play area
  • Numerous tunnels and coves
  • Two specific zones for age-appropriate play (2-5 years and 5-12 years)
  • An electronic game, similar to whack a mole (music, tap lighted posts)
  • Rubber safety surfacing throughout, with rolling hills and dots for creative play

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