East Village Play Areas, Stratford, London
The Olympic Delivery Authority has scored a hit with its three new play areas in East Village, formerly known as the Olympic Village.
The bespoke timber play areas deliver quality and play value and were completed by Russell Play in December 2013. Long Park is a sand play area for infants up to 4 years old. Two other areas are for children of 4-12 years. The Belvedere is sited between trees and has natural slopes. The other is Mirabelle Gardens, a play village. Each area has been designed by Russell play experts and incorporates the unique Spielart play equipment.
The children`s play areas also provide a focal point for residents, parents and carers to meet which contributes socially to the community as a whole.
Natural wood in three play areas
The Belvedere play area is an above ground rope course with a ‘lookout’. Woven into the tree line, it creates play spaces and makes good use of its slopes. Named ‘The Hill’, The Belvedere is in the centre of the park design. It is placed on the main walking route for school children and its wooded slopes give playful routes to the summit.
Mirabelle Gardens makes use of its residential park setting. It is a play village of small timber huts that create a haven for imaginative play. Log bridges lead into the main play space with plenty of balancing logs, a stone circle and an accessible basket swing.
Long Park is a sand play area named ‘The Clearing’. This enclosed space is for children up to 4 years old. It has a wacky-style, two-storey Wendy house hut and an accessible rope hammock. The sand is nearly half-a-metre deep with log-on-end edging that adds seating for children or a surface on which to build sand castles. It has an enclosing play-design picket fence and gates, seating and buggy parking spaces.
The timber is predominately Robinia. Its naturally grown shape enhances the play equipment’s creative design. Chosen for natural feel, Robinia timber play fits with large landscaped areas among the village trees. It contrasts well with the surrounding high-rise developments.
“Good design and high quality products have produced play areas that are aesthetically pleasing, enhance the local public spaces and provide a good range of play opportunities for children of all ages.” Paul Karslake. Lend Lease, lead contractor