TAKE A LOOK: Omaha mother creates accessible playground for community
Lake Zorinsky 3D Rendering CREDIT: Imagine Inclusion
OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — Playgrounds are a place where children make life-long memories, but they’re not accessible to every child.
Something Meaghan Walls noticed when one of her children’s friends was unable to navigate the sand and wood chips at a local playground.
“We came to a point where we didn’t have anywhere near our home where all of our kids could play together,” Walls said.
The Omaha area does have accessible playgrounds, but none are located west of 84th Street.
“You’re potentially excluding almost a quarter of the population in the area from gathering and getting an experience of what park and playground socialization can be,” Walls said.
So, Walls decided to help out. She and two other women, Allison Corson-Brown and Lauren Citro, started Imagine Inclusion, a nonprofit whose first project is to create an accessible play space at Zorinsky Lake to replace the 26-year-old playground already there.
“Flat and accessible,” Walls said, describing the future space. “There will be a lot of high-contrasting colors to help with visual navigation.”
The playground plan includes interactive activities that can be reached from a seated position, plus accessible swings and a merry-go-round. There will also be slides that reduce static electricity for medical implants.
“This is flesh to the ground with seating and handrails so it’s accessible for everyone,” Walls said.
The project is estimated to cost $800,000. Imagine Inclusion has already raised $210,000, with $100,000 being donated by the city.
“Once we have the money it’s only about 6-8 weeks to tear this out and get the new one in,” Walls said.
The park is projected to be completed by the spring of 2022.