Brock Elementary School Natural Playscape (with cost information!), Skala Design, Vancouver Canada, 2010
One of the things I wish I could bring you more of on the blog is how much projects cost, but I often simply can’t access that information. So I really appreciate Alexa Uhrich of Skala Design in Vancouver providing me with the expenses of their project to help those of you planning a natural playscape or classroom garden.
“Generous donations were received from the surrounding community. Douglas Fir logs were supplied and delivered by the Vancouver School Board and the boulders were sourced from an adjacent construction site and delivered free of charge to site by Ventana Construction. A special thank you was also extended to local real estate agent Paul Eviston for his contribution by means of a stone carving.”
Communities are often very willing to donate to playground projects, but we need to question why we’re asking them for $50,000-$100,000 when a space like this was developed for under $9,000? To be fair, there was ‘equipment’ already available at the school, so this installation didn’t even require swings or slides, which should not be neglected in even the most natural of playgrounds.
$6,763: School Board construction crew costs for demolition, base preparation, supply and installation of timber edging, bark mulch pathways, topsoil and composted mulch, planting, placement of Douglas-fir logs and placement of boulders using truck crane.
$935: Supply and delivery of plants from a local nursery.
$500: Stone carving to thank donor.
$500: Grant from Evergreen (www.evergreen.ca) that went toward purchase of native plants.
The total project construction cost was under $9,000
“As the garden has grown over the last two years, its play value has increased. Kids play hide and seek inside mature native shrubs, dig holes to compost their recess snacks and use the boulders and logs to play games. One of the wonderful things that has been observed in the garden is that kids of all ages play together and often choose to play in this space rather than on nearby equipment.”
I love that they compost their snacks!
[all photos from Skala Design]