Karl's Climbing Silos, Karl's Adventure Village, Elstal
Just in time for spring and the start of the amusement park season, Karl’s Erlebnis-Dorf (Adventure Village) opens new playgrounds in Elstal close to Berlin and in Zirkow on Rügen.
The two new play structures in Elstal and Zirkow are particularly spectacular and possibly record-breaking. Karl’s Climbing Silos are 13.2 metre high twin climbing towers with a 130 m³ size net inside and a slide of almost 17m length, which takes the summiteers back to the ground.
The Landscape Architect in charge, Ute Hoffmann, (from ‘Bürogemeinschaft Stadt- und Dorfplanung’), describes the concept: “The idea for Karl’s climbing silo developed in our Karl planning group from various requirements. We wanted to establish something unique for the older kids. We all have children of our own, who have partially “outgrown” the normal playgrounds for younger children.”
A net is the perfect base for this. Climbing in a three-dimensional space challenges and encourages the kids, their psychomotor abilities and their three-dimensional imaginative power. Rope is a very suitable playmate. It reacts to the movement of the kids and each step and grip offers movement.
Giant tube slide
Ute explained: “The further challenge was to create a great attraction within a small space. The existing 12m high firefighting water tank was to be included thematically. As we like to integrate common village structures in Karl’s Adventure Villages, we invented the design of the twin silo towers. The Climbing Silo was to look as if it were still under construction and therefore very airy. This increases the height adventure for the kids and the guests on the Hof terraces are fully entertained while watching the kids. The transparent design has been implemented very well with the choice of the material and the colour of the ropes. In Elstal we were also able to include a further, higher-located gastronomic terrace through a tunnel “.
Marius Kotte, architect at Berliner Seilfabrik and head of the construction and development department, comments that the height of the unit was a specific challenge: “We had to make sure that it was possible to connect the parts without big measuring tolerances, as the net does not allow much tolerance. The tolerances of the pipe supplier already gave us a headache, as this was at - 50mm with the 13m long poles. Due to the length of the posts, a mounting by simply positioning and screwing together was not possible. In addition, this kind of net has never been built before. For the net, connecting details between the tightening ball and the poles had to be developed. The net is hung in a “swimming” position; this means that the upper balls are brought into position by guy ropes. Here, too, a deviation from the system measures was not allowed." said Marius Kotte.
"Concerning the slide, the difficulty was to manage the run in such a way, that the net tunnel was bypassed and the required space for the landing did not exceed the existing area and the maximum permitted incline was adhered to. For this reason, the slide has a sharp bend in it after passing the tunnel. The last piece has an incline of almost 40° (30-35° is usual). The real goal of the climbing adventure is the tube slide, which fits perfectly into the complete picture with its rusty look!“ says Ute Hoffmann. “
Marius Kotte explained: “This rusty look of the poles is only on the surface. On simple steel, so-called flash rust builds up rather quickly. This really only makes clothes dirty, nothing more… In order to avoid corrosion in the foundation, an epoxy coating was applied, as the vulnerability for rust there is extremely high. The poles have a thicker wall than they need in order to be on the safe side. The rusty look of the outside of the stainless steel slide is achieved through a foil that is wetted with metal particles. These particles also build flash rust and make the slide look old“. At the opening, which took place on the scheduled date in the middle of March, the kids were in command and took the climbing tower by storm. Landscape Architect Ute Hoffmann is enthusiastic, too: “We think that Karl´s Climbing Silo is very well-done and was implemented by Berliner Seilfabrik in a unique way. It fits our intended playing concept really well. “