Children should be seen and and heard, ideally outdoors.
So believes landscape architect and activist Robin Moore, founder of the Natural Learning Initiative. In a lecture and conversation presented by the John Yeon Center for Architecture and the Landscape, Moore will discuss the role naturalized urban spaces can play in child development and what he describes as “landscape architecture’s new quest” to integrate nature for kids in cities throughout the U.S. and the world.
Thursday, October 29, 2015, 6:00 p.m.
White Stag Block, 70 NW Couch Street
Admission: No cost, open to the public
Robin Moore holds degrees in architecture from London University and urban planning from MIT and is an international authority on the design of children’s play and learning environments. His own designs include the well-known Environmental Yard, in Berkeley, California, and as a consultant he has helped shape such wide-ranging spaces as the Nature PlayScape at the Cincinnati Nature Center to the Playport in the Raleigh-Durham Airport. Currently, he is at work on the Chicago Zoological Society for the programming and design of Explore!, the new children’s facility at Brookfield Zoo, Illinois; and for the City of Durham for the programming and design of renovations to Duke Park as well as the development of the Durham Parks and Recreation Master Plan. Moore is director of the NC State University Natural Learning Initiative and a member of the eight-country Growing Up in Cities action research project sponsored by UNESCO.
“Welcome to Nature”, written by Sandra Burtzos, RLA, of Portland Parks and Recreation and Ben Johnson, PLA, CPSI, of GreenWorks, P.C., was published in the National Recreation and Park Association’s June 2015 publication. Nice job you two! NRPA-E-Zine_June_2015
Nadaka Nature Park will host a grand opening on Saturday, April 4, to celebrate completion of the park and community garden as well as the unusual and uplifting partnerships that brought down the barbed wire around an urban forest and reclaimed it – and improved it – for the public.
The community is invited to celebrate from 10 a.m. to noon at Nadaka, a City of Gresham park located at Northeast 175th Avenue and Northeast Glisan Street in the City’s Wilkes East neighborhood. The new nature-based play area and community garden will be open for the first time, tempting kids of all ages to climb, ride, build and jump on boulders, totem poles, a log cabin and a life-sized canoe carved from local cedar. A sand pit, 50-plot community garden and covered picnic area are also part of the park renovation, which was designed by MIG, a Portland design and planning firm.
The celebration is public – because the park is. About 75 percent of the funds used to create Nadaka came from bond measures to support parks that were passed by voters in Gresham and across the region in 1990, 1995 and 2006.
Click on the following links to get more information and view photos of the nature-based play area.
The small community of Mt Angel, requested a natural play area with slides, swings and a view tower for their newly renovated main park. The result provides play opportunities essential to child development in a cost effective and sustainable manner.
LandCurrent carefully selected and integrated play equipment into a sculpted landform which gives children the opportunity to play among shrubs, trees, boulders and logs. Parents can survey the area easily, granting them the ease of mind to allow their kids to play relatively independently. In addition, the entire path system is wheelchair accessible. The tower, slides and boulder scramble areas include accessible features and are designed to allow children of various abilities to play together.
LandCurrent worked as sub consultant under Cameron McCarthy, who was removing a couple of large cedars at another project. The trunks of these trees were reused at the playground. The project was in part funded by a Local Government Grant through the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department.
Portland Parks & Recreation is celebrating their newly opened Natural Play Area at Westmoreland Park, the first-ever such endeavor in the parks bureau’s history.
The construction fences for the pilot project came down on Monday, September 22 and there has been a great turnout of kids and parents every day since.
The kids seem to really enjoy the many features of the natural play area which include log and boulder climbing, a creek with sand and water to build dams and manipulate the water’s course, and sticks and small limbs to build forts and lean-tos.
The grand “re-opening” celebration for the park, which includes the Nature Play Area and the Stream Restoration project is October 25, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. It is a new Salmon Festival that is being kicked off as the first year in Westmoreland Park. The celebration is free and open to the public.
Join us in a catalyzing week focused on making health, happiness and the outdoors a priority for our kids, families, and communities. From September 11 – 15, David Bond of Project Wild Thing will be in Portland. Hailing from the U.K., David will be visiting with parents, kids, educators, parks professionals, and everyone in between to share his work and help inspire further growth to great things already going on here in the northwest. A series of events, dubbed the Northwest Children’s Nature Play Week, have come together and we are really excited.