Vancouver Park Board to vote Tuesday on accessible, sensory playground proposal

Click to play video: 'Accessible sensory park proposed in Vancouver for neurodivergent kids'
Accessible sensory park proposed in Vancouver for neurodivergent kids
The Vancouver Park Board will meet Tuesday night to vote on a proposal to create an accessible sensory park for neurodivergent children and kids with mobility challenges – Jan 23, 2024

The Vancouver Park Board will consider a proposal Tuesday to built an accessible park for neurodivergent children and kids with mobility challenges.

Dozens of people came out to a Monday night meeting to speak in support of the plan, proposed by Parks Commissioner Jaspreet Virdi.

Virdi’s motion argues that the city has just two playgrounds, one at Kitsilano Beach and one at Douglas Park, which meet the standard of a fully-inclusive and accessible sensory park.

Click to play video: 'Sensory-friendly shopping for people with autism'
Sensory-friendly shopping for people with autism

It calls for the creation of a playground with sensory-rich play zones that stimulate the senses of touch, sight, sound and smell, along with accessible equipment designed to be usable by all manner of children, including those in wheelchairs, along with the installation of accessible ramps and surfacing.

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However, some commissioners said the proposal overlaps with existing work to add sensory-friendly play areas and accessible features to new and existing city parks.

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Commissioner suggested that instead of the new park, that city staff draft a report with an update on existing work and map out existing accessible and sensory friendly playgrounds online.

Tense discussions on the matter ran late into the evening, and and the vote was postponed to Tuesday night.

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