xeniagazette.com

Valley Greene Park gets city’s first wheelchair accessible playground

By Amanda Crowe acrowe@civitasmedia.com

March 29, 2014

FAIRBORN — One city park is getting new playground equipment with some special features.


Valle Greene Park, located on Valle Greene Drive, will be the home of Fairborn’s first wheelchair accessible play set, which will allow those in wheelchairs to roll up a ramp to a play platform with bongo drums and spinning steering wheel.


“This will be the first true ADA accessible playground in our community, and I’m sure we’ll build more,” said Parks and Recreation Superintendent Alicia Eckhart. “Having accessibility at our parks is a big push for me. The idea is that no child be kept to the edge of the playground. We want that child to feel like any other child on playground. Any person with with challenges or in a wheelchair can roll right up to the first tier platform.”


There will also be handicapped cuts at the streets, handicapped parking and a sidewalk that leads directly onto the ramp. The 5-foot wide sidewalk will cut through the mulch and boundary so there are no obstacles to go over.


The play set itself will include a double slide, twisty slide and climbing features. The wide steps will allow handicapped users to transition from a wheelchair and scoot up to the next platform if they are able. Staff will put up swings later this summer, and the park will eventually have new benches around the playground.


“The playground that is currently there is a tot playground for 2- to 4-year-olds,” Eckhart said. “We are going to leave that play set there but will need to repaint it. It will be a really nice neighborhood park for all ages.”


These park improvements were included in the parks and recreation capital improvement plan for this year.