I saw the pics start to creep in on my newsfeed over Labor Day Weekend from my adventurous, early adapter friends: “Checking out this new park in Carmel!” “Can’t believe no one is here yet!” And it’s true: The West Commons Playground – located inside Central Park at 111th Street and College Avenue – has finally opened in Carmel. The Carmel Clay Parks and Recreation team have hit it out of the, well, park with this one and we have all the sneak peek pics you can handle.
Here are the details straight from the Carmel Clay Parks press release:
After much anticipation, the West Commons Playground at Central Park is now open to the public. With a playground unlike anything in Carmel or the metro area, the West Commons is sure to become a favorite destination for kids and their families for years to come.
The park encompasses more than 25,000 square feet and includes numerous areas for climbing, swinging, sliding, exploration, and water play. By incorporating universal design principles, kids of all abilities will be able to enjoy and create memories on this mega-playground.
The West Park playground has a futuristic appearance, which should spark the imagination of kids of all ages. Nestled within a hill that helps keep kids contained and masks the true magnitude of the playground, highlights include:
- Two 32-foot-tall enclosed towers with bridges, walkways and slides
- Climbing opportunities throughout the play area
- Numerous tunnels and coves
- Two specific zones for age-appropriate play (2-5 years and 5-12 years)
- An electronic game, similar to whack a mole (music, tap lighted posts)
- Rubber safety surfacing throughout, with rolling hills and dots for creative play
In an adjacent but separately contained zone, the Splash Pad, which is currently closed due to maintenance repairs, is inspired by the surrounding prairie within Central Park. Once open, this area will provide interest for kids of all ages, with opportunities to spin and rotate features and most importantly, cool off during hot Indiana summers. Giant cattails, flowers, and playful critters join a symphony of sprays and geysers to entertain kids throughout the summer. The splash pad will be open annually beginning Memorial Day weekend until temperatures begin cooling in late September. Both the playground and splash pad are free amenities, with the playground open daily from sunrise until sunset.
Shade structures and benches are located throughout both the playground and splash pad areas, providing a respite from the sun and a place for parents, grandparents and caregivers to comfortably observe all the fun. The main community shelter situated between the playground and splash pad has restrooms and changing tables. Four additional shelters, bound to be popular locations for birthday parties, family reunions, and similar events, will be available for rent beginning in 2017. A new parking lot, located along the Central Park West Drive just east of the College Avenue entrance, provides convenient parking for the new West Commons attractions and a perfect jump off point for the park’s trail network.
“The vision for a playground in Central Park goes all the way back to the park’s original 2002 master plan,” said Mark Westermeier, director, Carmel Clay Parks & Recreation. “It’s incredibly exciting to see that plan come to life in such a marvelous way.”