LASN is a photographically oriented, professional journal featuring topics of concern and state-of-the-art projects designed or influenced by registered Landscape Architects.
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Continued on page 22 20 Landscape Architect and Specifier News The landscape architecture firm of Logan Simpson designed the Mahaffey Park Playground in Colorado. Rock walls offer varying climbing challenges for several age groups. Di Giacomo Artisan Rocks manufactured the individual rocks for the wall; Colorado Hardscapes, of Denver, assembled the climbing wall. Colorado Hardscapes also created two fallen log tunnels where kids can crawl through and peek out of hollowed-out knots and test their skill on a fallen log balance beam. Access to the top of the large climbing wall is possible by stairs on either side of the wall, as well as a spiraling, accessible walkway. Descent from the large climbing wall is possible by a 10-foot-high spiral slide, made by Columbia Cascade. Poligon Structures manufactured the large fabric shade structure in the far left of the photo. Logan Simpson, of Fort Collins, Colo., led the landscape architecture for Mehaffey Park, a new 63-acre recreation and leisure site in Loveland. The design stays true to the nature and history of Colorado, incorporating public art that references the 1860s Overland Trail, fruit orchards like those that settlers established in the area, and native and durable materials to encourage interactive and explorative play. ECI Site Construction Management, the general contractor, brought on specialized team members to help, including Colorado Hardscapes. The 3.5-acre nature-inspired playground is nestled within rock climbing walls. To achieve the goal of an all-natural, rugged terrain, a rope and wood bridge connects the top of the climbing features to a prefabricated tree house. The playground was originally designed with large, stacked natural rock retaining and climbing walls. However, the construction feasibility, aesthetics and cost made it prohibitive to go this route. The team worked with the rock artisans at Colorado Hardscapes to help create these features. Di Giacomo Artisan Rocks matched the natural stone retaining walls used throughout the site, as well as nearby rock formations in the surrounding foothills. Colorado Hardscapes' rock designer, Karen Keyes, created a maquette, or a precisely scaled model, of the design. The maquette of the fabricated rock features helped in visualizing the climbing elements and making final adjustments, said Jana McKenzie, of Logan Simpson. Colorado Hardscapes installed the concrete and steel rocks. They weathered the surfaces of the rocks to match nearby formations. "The playground climbing wall and waterfall are a key feature of Mehaffey Park and draws Mehaffey Park Playground, Loveland, Colo. PHOTO CREDIT: LOGAN SIMPSON p l a y g ro u n d Landscape Architecture by Logan Simpson // By Michael Miyamoto, LASN