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BergerABAM Designs Playscapes at Clark College

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Nine natural playscapes are the highlights of BergerABAM’s landscape design for Phase I of the new Early Learning Center at the main campus of Clark College in Vancouver, Washington. Designed to look and feel like the natural environment, the playscapes are intended to capture a child’s natural sense of discovery, foster emotional and physical development, encourage the value of caring for the earth, and promote the mastery of challenge through play and appropriate risk-taking.

The playscapes use different aspects of the outdoor environment to facilitate different forms of play, such as tricycle races, listening to a story, being a pirate on lookout, and watering the garden. These unique settings include a sensory herb garden, a storytime area shaped in a spiral and surrounded by rustling bamboo, an enchanted forest of native plant materials enhanced to encourage wildlife, a grassy lookout point for climbing, a water garden with a dry creek bed, and a discovery maze featuring a meandering path. Click here to view photos of the project. BergerABAM also prepared construction documents, including landscape and irrigation construction plans, details, technical specifications, cost estimates, and construction management.

The Early Learning Center had its beginnings in the kindergartens that served the children of workers at the Kaiser shipyards during WWII. The Early Learning Center will be dedicated on 29 September 2011.