Turning vacant lots into green spaces can improve the mental health of adults in communities. The importance of public spaces cannot be stressed enough, offering people a common area to come together and engage with the community. In designing a community space, it is vital to make it as useful as possible so that everyone, young or old, can enjoy and take advantage of its offerings. A multipurpose landscaping project that addresses the needs of the whole community makes sense, enabling everybody to be comfortable, relaxed, and engaged in a public area.
Integrating Families And Children
Public spaces are not only meant for adults; they should also be designed with the purpose of serving the needs of different groups of people. For example, dividing a community space into several zones makes it possible to offer an area for families and their children. While part of the landscaping involves planting grass where kids can run or play, it is also critical to include lawn care as an element of the plan. Without proper maintenance, the turf in community spaces can quickly wilt and even die. Therefore, a multipurpose space should also include playgrounds with soft surfaces or a tree house for children as alternatives in order to help keep the lawn in a good condition by regulating foot traffic.
It is also important that families feel safe when using a community space. Thus, the project can include fencing off a part of the lot where children can play. Putting a sandbox in is one idea. To make the space natural and safer for the young ones, consider using pea gravel or silica sand. Around the play area, you can include some benches and plants where the adults can sit, watch the kids, or socialize with others.
Accessibility For People With Limited Mobility
When planning a multipurpose landscaping project, it is critical to decide during the design process what standards to apply for the space. Municipalities and agencies usually follow the standards set by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) for public and private structures. On the other hand, the US Forest Services has also its own guidelines when drawing up plans for outdoor recreation and spaces. Both offer good resources for multipurpose projects. Nonetheless, the design approach should consider the quality of experience for users with different physical abilities.
To illustrate, a universal design applies the accessibility criteria set by regulatory agencies, and at the same time, offers the best value experience possible for all users. For a multipurpose landscaping project, consider bed heights, vertical growing, and planting tables if you intend to include communal gardens as part of the project. Doing this will allow a wide range of people with different physical abilities to garden. Paths must be designed to accommodate slopes and angles of curves so that participants with limited mobility can walk comfortably. Some paths may be paved to accommodate people using wheelchairs and scooters, but you can also opt to use grass pavers and strong turf to improve the aesthetics of a community space.
Designing a multipurpose landscaping project that everyone can appreciate may be challenging. However, by creating a design that meets the needs of a diverse set of people including families, children, and those with disabilities, it is possible to construct a community space that everyone can use and enjoy.