Monday, August 28, 2006

Groundbreaking for Universally Accessible play area at Pan Pacific

Los Angeles - The Department of Recreation and Parks and Councilmember Tom La Bonge broke ground to mark the start of construction on a new 17,000-square-foot Universally Accessible playground at Pan Pacific Recreation Center.

The new play area will be the 5th Universally Accessible playground operated by the Department. With over 160,000 special needs children in Los Angeles County, the new playground, which will be completely wheelchair accessible, will provide a brighter future for all children.

Pan Pacific's Accessible Playground is a project of Shane's Inspiration, an organization that is devoted to creating "boundless playgrounds" that provide opportunities for children with disabilities to play at their highest level. Shane's Inspiration in conjunction with the Department of Rec and Parks and Melendrez Design Partners of Los Angeles all contributed to the design of the new playground.

Features will include two separate portions for children ages 2-5 and 6-12. The 2-5 year old section will be in the shape of a train and have sound effects that include a whistle and an engine. A foot path with a water element that will provide a unique sensory activity, complete with gentle mist and artist created tiles. Shade will also be incorporated into the $675,000 art deco motif play area, as well as bright colors and opportunities to experience different textures.

Funding is coming from Prop K, developer fees, and a $200,000 donation from Legacy Partners, Incorporated. Thomsen Landscape of Reseda is the general contractor and the City's Department of Public Works' Bureau of Engineering will be managing the project.

Jane Kolb: (213)928-9294, or cell, (323)816-6712

Harvey Drut: (213)928-9296, or cell, (323)816-6711