City of Boston Unveils First Universally Accessible Playground
Mayor Tom Menino and David H. Long, chairman and CEO of Liberty Mutual Insurance held a ribbon cutting ceremony to unveil the City of Boston’s first universally accessible playground at the Charlestown Navy Yard called the Spaulding Playground. The project includes a 23,000 sq. ft. boardwalk and 63 pieces of play equipment in a 15,000 sq. ft. rubber play area. The entire playground, accessible paths, and gathering spaces are all in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, the first of its kind in Boston.
“This playground has been very special to me. It will be the first in our city that is universally accessible to children and adults of all abilities,” Menino said. “This is Boston at its best… people coming together to improve the quality of life for the residents of our city.”
The park also includes benches, tables, trash receptacles, bike racks, fence/rail systems, signage and lighting, and a connection to the ever expanding Harborwalk path system, which if you haven’t been in a while, is a beautiful way to walk around Boston.
According to city officials, more than 400 granite blocks were used for construction, some of which was sourced from the original seawall on site. The timbers used for seating were once intended for use for mast during Drydock 5’s shipbuilding era. Approximately 100 children, with and without disabilities, were on hand for the celebration.
Liberty Mutual Insurance provided the cornerstone donation of $1 million for the creation and construction of the playground. “Today is a very special day for us at Liberty Mutual Insurance,” Long said. “Today, our small, yet honorable guests will break in a remarkable place where children of all abilities can play together. We are thrilled to have made Boston’s universally accessible playground possible.”