Savia Proyectos trains its employees in the design of inclusive parks.

The new Accessibility Law, which came into force this year, seeks to improve urban public spaces so that everyone can enjoy them.

Last October, Savia Proyectos completed an exhaustive training on inclusivity in urban public spaces for all our employees. The objective was to define in detail the concept of inclusive parks that we want to design, which we conceive as a space of enjoyment and play experiences for everyone in the same time and place. And inclusiveness plays an important role in this “everyone”.

At Savia Proyectos we understand this concept as a set of creative design solutions through which each child receives stimuli that, although they do not imply the same use of the play elements for everyone, they do encourage interaction and enjoyment of all the equipment in the area on equal terms. In this way we can provide all children with the means to share in the play as they grow and develop in enjoyment, regardless of their conditions. Because every child is as special as every other child.

Thus, we intend to go a step further in complying with the new Accessibility Law, which came into force this year, whose purpose is to improve urbanized public spaces so that people with functional diversity are not discriminated against.

How the new Accessibility Law affects

The technical document of the Accessibility Law published in the Official State Gazette (BOE) develops the basic conditions of accessibility and non-discrimination, taking into consideration the needs of people with disabilities.

Specifically, Article 7 of the law establishes that parks must have a clear passage height of no less than 2.20 meters. and without isolated steps at any of its points. In addition, the paving must meet defined design and installation characteristics, and access to the park must start from an accessible pedestrian route that meets the same requirements as the park itself. Likewise, all available facilities, activities and services must be connected by at least one accessible pedestrian route, providing rest areas along it at intervals of no more than 50 meters. Finally, accessible pedestrian routes in parks and gardens must have information for orientation and location of access, facilities, activities and services available, and such signage must meet certain criteria.

This implies that the law affects the development of the play area, both in how we get to it and how we move within it or between play sets and also in how we communicate spaces, zones and play areas, as well as their accesses.

Article 8 establishes that at least one out of every five play elements must have universal accessibility criteria – in the case of children’s playground equipment, this element must be of a dynamic type or one that generates movement upon entering its interior, and if there is more than one with universal accessibility criteria, they must correspond to a different category-. In addition, the play elements must stimulate at least two directions, and within the designed area must comply with the criteria of “safe circulation”, physical and visual structuring and also transfer platforms without overlapping with the accessible pedestrian itinerary.

Creative solutions

With the new training given to Savia Proyectos employees, we not only provide detailed information to the entire team about the criteria to be met derived from the new Accessibility Law, but we also transmit what is the concept of the park we want to design and why.

Understanding the characteristics and special needs of children with visual and hearing impairments, motor deficiencies or those with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is the first step in providing design solutions that Savia Proyectos has been researching and proposing for years. In addition to knowing how to choose the right products, it is a matter of understanding these products in order to design the area, creating an inclusive park that fosters play experiences for all in which there is interaction and enjoyment.

One example is the proposal we have presented for the park planned in La Medida, in the Tenerife municipality of Güímar, where Savia Proyectos has devised an inclusive area that meets these objectives by including accessible itineraries, play elements with universal accessibility and chromatic contrasts. It also takes advantage of overlaps and includes a relief map translated into Braille as well as an auditory multimedia system for blind people, as we have done in other projects. A play area to share, enjoy and grow, designed for everyone and from which to combat discrimination.

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