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The Mark of Design Excellence
The Business Times
September 30, 2020
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How can playgrounds adapt to fears brought about by a pandemic?

 Currently, All playgrounds are designed and spaced 1.8m apart so it meets the social distancing measures of 1m apart. In addition, most playgrounds are situated outdoors so it is well ventilated.  It has natural cleaning effect under UV, Sun and rain. It is also the responsibility of the parents to ensure the children are probably masked up when playing at the playground to prevent airborne transmission

 

 What’s the thought process behind designing playgrounds? 

we design playgroundS as a form of play sculptures, where we combine art and play into one. We find the nexus between form and function to create beautiful play sculptures that are not only safe and fun but HAVE a design that will last for generations similar to the dragon playground at Toa Payoh.

 

What should playgrounds essentially do for children besides working up a sweat?

Helps to promote: Promote social interaction, Improving their motor skills,  hand-eye coordination  as well as cognitive skills testing their risk tolerance

 

Is it safe to assume that your corporate culture has a huge element of ‘play’ and ‘fun’ in it?

Yes, play and fun come hand in hand in how we work and also an appreciation of art.

What are your fondest memories of playgrounds growing up?

Climbing on the abstract concrete structures and playing on the swings.  A look back at how playgrounds have evolved over time to what they are today. Playgrounds have evolved from STANDARD FUNCTIONAL PLAYGROUND to more theme-based playground. That reflects the heritage and history of a location.

For e.g.: We built a battleship playground at Sembawang Park in memory of 2  British naval battleships that sank after being attacked by the  Japanese during world war two.

There are also more SPRAY PARKS playgrounds in addition to the dry playground to add a preferred variation given Singapore’s hot climate. The playground is now seen as an important highlight in the USP for most development such as malls and hospitality establishments to attract families with kids.

 

What are some of the best public playgrounds in SG today (whether designed by Playpoint or not)? Why do you recommend them?

The Discovery Slides at Jewel Changi Airport (one of the star attraction at canopy park, it is a stainless steel mirror sculpture that resembles a gemstone. It is the most Instagram place at Jewel because of  its mirror surface  Adults can admire for its design while children have fun sliding down drop slide which is adrenaline-pumping)

Oasis Waterpark at Nee Soon East, it is the first community spray park within a housing estate spanning over 5600m2, consist of 3 main spray zones of waterplay, based on a rainforest theme most wonderful thing is no entrance fee required located at 307 Yishun ring road.

The Wonderland playground at Dawson  Vista it is the first theme park playground in the HDB heartlands. It was inspired by the Alice in Wonderland fairy tale. Kids are transported into this magical world where it promotes imaginative role-playing as well as physical play, located at 78A STRATHMORE ave.

In support of environmental sustainability, how are your products and processes aligned with being a green company?

We have green label certificates for our playground equipment which contains at least 50% recycled content and also our fitness equipment that can charge your handphone while working out. We are also constantly looking for ways to re-condition used Playgrounds and donate them to countries like East Timor and Cambodia as part of our CSR initiatives.

Are there adult playground structures you’re aware of or that you’ve designed/built too? What’s similar or different about a playground for adults?

It’s more like a family playground where parents and children can play together. For example, Discovery Slides – the slides are wider for parents and child to slide dow together and there is also a vertical drop slide where even adults can try it out to test their risk tolerance.

What’s the future of playgrounds in Singapore?

 The future of playgrounds should be more open and adventurous so that users learn to discover, where they take a tumble but able to get right back up. The complaint we often hear is that today’s playgrounds can be a little too sterile and devoid of challenge.