Thursday, February 19, 2015

Best Ramp-Accessible Play Structures in the South Bay

Alvarez Park, Santa Clara -- large sections of both
structures are ramp-accessible.
With the opening of two fully-accessible Silicon Valley playgrounds on the horizon (Rotary PlayGarden in San Jose this weekend, and Magical Bridge in Palo Alto in March), the South Bay is about to take some big leaps forward in providing community play spaces for kids of all abilities and comfort levels. (And parents too! A recent article about Magical Bridge discussed a mom who uses a wheelchair, and she was so excited about a structure she could play on with her children -- an issue I'd never even considered before!)

If you can't make it to downtown San Jose or Palo Alto on a daily basis, though, it's good to know that there are already several playgrounds in the South Bay that have structures that are almost entirely (some entirely) ramp-accessible.
Berryessa Creek Park (San Jose) is actually designated as
wheelchair-accessible -- see the sign above, and the structure below.

Parents or kids who use wheelchairs or walkers, or who, for whatever reason, don't feel comfortable with stairs or ladders, can access many parts of these structures, and many of the on-structure features (bells, chimes, gears, puzzles, etc.) are specifically accessible to people in wheelchairs. Obviously, these structures are great for crawlers or early walkers too -- a win for everybody!

Here are some of our favorites -- I'm just going off the top of my head here, so this is far from an exhaustive list, but I thought it might be a nice resource for families who prefer or need this type of structure.

Calabazas Park, San Jose -- both the toddler structure (above)
and the big kid structure (below) are fully accessible.

San Jose
  • Calabazas Park (West San Jose)
  • Newhall Park (Central San Jose, near airport)
  • Willow Street/Frank Bramhall Park (Willow Glen)
  • Berryessa Creek Park (aka Majestic Park) (Berryessa)
  • Lincoln Glen Park (Willow Glen)
  • Paul Moore Park (Cambrian)
  • River Oaks Park (North SJ)
Newhall Park's (San Jose) one structure is
mostly ramp-accessible

The "big kid" structure at Lincon Glen Park in San Jose
is ramp-accessible.
Frank Bramhall-Willow Park (Willow Glen) has two structures,
both of which are ramp-accessible (toddler structure is above,
big kid structure is below).

Mountain View
  • Cuesta Park
  • Shoreline Lake Park
Access ramp at Cuesta Park in Mountain View

Santa Clara
  • Alvarez Park 
Ramp access to the "big kid" structure at Alvarez Park in Santa Clara.

Sunnyvale
  • Seven Seas Park
The great access ramp at Seven Seas in Sunnyvale.

Please let me know if you have any additions to this list!

(Link to Facebook post.)

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