Observe an urban playscape transform into a sustainable, natural oasis.
Outdoor and risky play has proven to have a powerfully positive effect in childhood development, encouraging kids to explore, imagine, and create. Traditional playgrounds can limit a child’s ability to connect with surroundings and challenge their minds and bodies.
For parents, educators, and urban planners, the question remains: How do you create a natural playscape in an urban environment?
Ben Johnson, Associate Landscape Architect at GreenWorks, embraced the challenge of bringing a natural playscape inside Portland’s Urban Growth Boundary – resulting in the Westmoreland Nature-Based Play Area. The project features structures that exercise sustainable practices and double as play objects, from salvaged concrete repurposed for water play elements and many salvaged logs for climbing features and custom benches. This project opened in 2014 and is wildly popular with children and adults alike, earning the ASLA Oregon Honor Award and a feature in our very own publication, Design & Play!
Don’t miss this discussion on designing for play, nature, and sustainability with Landscape Architect Ben Johnson at Design Museum Mornings: Nature Play in the City, 8:30-10am on March 2nd at the Center for Architecture!
Design Museum Mornings is a monthly event series brought to you by Design Museum Portland. These events are meant to inspire you before your day begins and bring you closer to the Design Museum Portland community. Each event will include a short presentation by a local thought-leader, free breakfast, and great people to wake up with. These events are hosted and sponsored by various generous businesses of the Greater Portland area. If you are interested in hosting one of these events, please check out our host page here for more information.