Manipulable Playground Opens in Manhattan

When New York City-based architect David Rockwell began taking his own two children to playgrounds, he wondered whether their imaginations and inherent desires to build structures could be better served by the playground environment. With that in mind, a vision began to form.

After six years of research and development, and in a partnership with KaBOOM!, a nonprofit organization striving to create play areas within walking distance of every child in America, the Rockwell Group opened its first Imagination Playground, in lower Manhattan.

The playground hinges on the concept that children can play most creatively in settings they can manipulate. It features sand and moving water, as well as more than 300 movable objects including blocks, crates, fabric and carts. All of these loose parts are designed to allow children to create their own activities and environments, or simply build something and tear it down.

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