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McFee Park playground open to public


McFee Park’s playground is open for students home over the winter holidays to release steam on a play structure Farragut children helped design.

“We wanted to open the playground so that over the holidays, parents could go let their kids run off steam that they build up over the holiday season,” Farragut Parks and Leisure Services Director Sue Stuhl said.

The Park playground features various slides, stairs, walkways, seesaws, swings and many other play elements.

“It’s a wonderful playground with lots and lots of elements and some open space so kids can actually play on the surface,” Stuhl said.

“We think the kids are going to love it,” she added.

The playground is divided between a solid surface of a three-inch thick foam-like material and rubber mulch.

“The solid surface has the tiles that are three inches thick, and it’s very squishy. It’s fun just to walk on,” Stuhl said. The rubber mulch also is an improvement over normal wood mulch — it doesn’t degrade or compact nearly as quickly.

The Town held two design charette exercises to decide on what features the playground would include, and invited Farragut children to send in their designs.

“Our designers — Barge, Waggoner, Sumner & Cannon — took that information and tried to incorporate as much as they could into the design,” Stuhl said.

The playground is the Town’s largest, Stuhl said, which cost around $200,000 to construct. Half of that cost was paid through a grant.


Phase II of McFee Park also features various “green” elements, including permeable pavers in the parking lot, solar panels, bio-swells and LED lighting.

“We really tried to incorporate a lot of ‘green’ elements into this part of the park that we hope will prove we can do this in other parts and other parks,” Stuhl said.

“With all those elements, I think it’s a beautiful section of the park, but I think it’s also a start on trying to be ecologically-minded in the way we develop Town property.

“We hope the kids will ask about the solar panels and other things,” she added.

The Town will publish information about its “green” elements in the park and will place it in its informational kiosks in coming months.

The playground was constructed as part of McFee Park’s Phase II, which also includes two large pavilions and a splash pad.

The picnic tables in the pavilions will be installed over the next month, Stuhl said.

The splash pad will open in the spring. Stuhl said she expects a ribbon-cutting ceremony for Phase II of the park in late April.

In addition to the playground, the public restrooms also are open.

For more information on the Town’s parks, visit www.townoffarragut.org

 

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