Project Play

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Project Play – Esther Short Park

Project Play is a vision to strategically place fully accessible playgrounds at parks throughout Vancouver, where people of all ages and abilities can thrive together through play. We are excited to share that in 2022 the play area at Esther Short Community Park (W. 8th & Columbia) will be reimagined using the radically inclusive model designed by our partners at Harper's Playground!

Why Esther Short Community Park?

The play equipment at Esther Short Park was installed in 1998 and at over 20 years old, is ready to be replaced. As one of Vancouver’s most popular parks, a fully inclusive playground at Esther Short Park will be used by many residents and visitors.

The new play area will incorporate accessible equipment and natural materials that are key to the Harper’s Playground model. Decorative elements will be added to reference the historical significance of the park and honor its Victorian design.

Funding for the new play area at Esther Short Park is being covered by fees collected from developers during the Vancouver Waterfront Park project. There are no direct costs to Vancouver residents.

What is the Harper's Playground "Radically Inclusive" model?

  • Physically Inviting: Is it accessible? And is it adaptive? Universal accessibility ensures that everybody can get everywhere and to everything. Adaptability means everything is designed to suit different conditions or needs.
  • Socially Inviting: Is it natural? Is it communal? Nature provides a calming effect on our mental and physical health, reducing fear, stress, and anger. Open, communal spaces allow people to gather, connect and share.
  • Emotionally Inviting: Is it thoughtful? Is it beautiful? Humans are impacted by their surroundings. Small, thoughtful details that provide comfort and delight the senses have a positive effect on a person’s wellbeing.

The most recent U.S Census data shows that one in five Americans has a disability. Most playgrounds incorporate basic ramps and a few wheelchair accessible play options to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act’s 2010 playground rules. Even with these changes, many members of our community are left on the sidelines.

In addition to making the park more inviting for people with disabilities, there is overwhelming evidence that unstructured play environments with natural features are also preferred by children who do not experience disability. We are excited to create a truly inclusive and welcoming space at Esther Short Park, where people of all abilities can play together and thrive.

Design Highlights

  • Double Slide & Play Mound
  • Boulder Scramble
  • Climbing Dome
  • Zero Entry Merry Go All
  • Swings
  • Roxall See-Saw
  • Music Garden
  • Increased Seating
  • Additional trees and landscaping

View the design plans for Esther Short Park in an interactive PDF here. Once the file is opened, click on any feature with white text to see a real-life photo.

Project Play – Esther Short Park

Project Play is a vision to strategically place fully accessible playgrounds at parks throughout Vancouver, where people of all ages and abilities can thrive together through play. We are excited to share that in 2022 the play area at Esther Short Community Park (W. 8th & Columbia) will be reimagined using the radically inclusive model designed by our partners at Harper's Playground!

Why Esther Short Community Park?

The play equipment at Esther Short Park was installed in 1998 and at over 20 years old, is ready to be replaced. As one of Vancouver’s most popular parks, a fully inclusive playground at Esther Short Park will be used by many residents and visitors.

The new play area will incorporate accessible equipment and natural materials that are key to the Harper’s Playground model. Decorative elements will be added to reference the historical significance of the park and honor its Victorian design.

Funding for the new play area at Esther Short Park is being covered by fees collected from developers during the Vancouver Waterfront Park project. There are no direct costs to Vancouver residents.

What is the Harper's Playground "Radically Inclusive" model?

  • Physically Inviting: Is it accessible? And is it adaptive? Universal accessibility ensures that everybody can get everywhere and to everything. Adaptability means everything is designed to suit different conditions or needs.
  • Socially Inviting: Is it natural? Is it communal? Nature provides a calming effect on our mental and physical health, reducing fear, stress, and anger. Open, communal spaces allow people to gather, connect and share.
  • Emotionally Inviting: Is it thoughtful? Is it beautiful? Humans are impacted by their surroundings. Small, thoughtful details that provide comfort and delight the senses have a positive effect on a person’s wellbeing.

The most recent U.S Census data shows that one in five Americans has a disability. Most playgrounds incorporate basic ramps and a few wheelchair accessible play options to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act’s 2010 playground rules. Even with these changes, many members of our community are left on the sidelines.

In addition to making the park more inviting for people with disabilities, there is overwhelming evidence that unstructured play environments with natural features are also preferred by children who do not experience disability. We are excited to create a truly inclusive and welcoming space at Esther Short Park, where people of all abilities can play together and thrive.

Design Highlights

  • Double Slide & Play Mound
  • Boulder Scramble
  • Climbing Dome
  • Zero Entry Merry Go All
  • Swings
  • Roxall See-Saw
  • Music Garden
  • Increased Seating
  • Additional trees and landscaping

View the design plans for Esther Short Park in an interactive PDF here. Once the file is opened, click on any feature with white text to see a real-life photo.

Have a question for us?

Tell us what you think! We welcome your questions about the planned park improvements at Esther Short Park. All questions will be answered as quickly as possible.

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