FROM LARCHMONT CHRONICLE: Work is expected to be underway this month for the long-anticipated playground pilot project being installed on a small portion of the surface parking lot on Larchmont Boulevard. Initially conceived by neighborhood associations and supported by Councilmember David Ryu and the staff and board of the city’s Dept. of Recreation and Parks (RAP), the 1,200-square-foot playground for young children accompanied by parents or guardians is expected to take about four weeks to install. An opening is expected as early as next month.
Nearly two years ago, letters supporting the idea came to the city from merchants (the Larchmont Boulevard Association — LBA), from residents south of Beverly Blvd. (the Windsor Square Association — WSA) and north of Beverly Blvd. (the Larchmont Village Neighborhood Association), from the Hancock Park Homeowners Association, from the HOPE-NET producers of the Taste of Larchmont and from the LBA producers of the Larchmont Family Fair. The LBA’s liaison with the Sunday Farmers’ Market learned that the market organizers “will not object” to the potential loss of the parking spaces to be converted into the small playground.
Based upon this almost universally positive response, landscape architects in the city’s RAP got to work on a detailed design process. The resulting playground, which replaces one out of four rows of parking spaces on the lot at 209 N. Larchmont Blvd., next to Bella Cures, will have landscaping as well as areas for child play and seating for supervising adults.
The playground design, as it has evolved under the leadership of RAP’s lead landscape architect, features multiple colorful spaces for child play.
There is a jumping game near the entrance from the Larchmont sidewalk. Further inside are log balance beams, “sprout”-themed structures for climbing, and low, brightly colored “mounds” for the littlest children. Three new trees, two palo verdes and one jacaranda, will be planted, along with new shrubs.
Opening hours will be similar to other city playgrounds, from after dawn to dusk. The playground is lighted, and it will be secured overnight by locking its entrance. Also, the LBA and its security contractor, SSA, will take an active interest in the well being of the playground and its occupants, including the playground’s opening and closing every day.
WRITTEN BY JOHN WELLBORNE FOR THE LARCHMONT CHRONICLE
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