Most playgrounds that you come across these days are made of upcycled materials. Many schools and city recreation departments decided years ago that creating playgrounds out of upcycled materials was an eco-friendly way to create a place for children to play without using new materials. There are many upcycled materials and ways to reuse certain materials that will allow you to design a playground any child would adore.
Reusing Rubber Automobile Tires
Old tires are perhaps one of the best things you can use on a child’s playground. Tires can be used as swings or even cut up to create other objects. For instance, some playgrounds cut up the tires and use the pieces to create creatures that the children can climb on, such as a crocodile or snake, since the treads on the tire are reminiscent of scales. Even having the old tires shred is a great way to add a protective mulch layer on the playground.
Old tires can also be used to create climbing attractions. For example, by stacking the tires with some space in between them and screwing the rubber into strong, sturdy wooden posts, children can climb through and on top of the tires until they are able to reach the top. You can even use the tires stacked side by side on the ground to create a wonderful tunnel for the children.
Other Upcycled Materials for Playgrounds
Using other materials such as wood, skateboards, marbles, ceramic pieces, and nearly any other materials you can think of will also come in handy in an upcycled playground design. Marbles and ceramic pieces can be used to create eye-catching mosaic art around the playground. Skateboards can be used as seats for swings or even as other fun equipment.
Using reclaimed wood is also wonderful and can be used to create the entire frame of the playground. Create bridges, steps, platforms, and fencing with the wood to keep the kids safe as they run around the playground. Recycled plastic and PVC pipes also come in handy during the construction process of a playground.
If your playground will be themed, consider what you can use to stick with the theme in mind. Let’s say you are creating a pirate ship playground. In this case, find an old rowboat no longer in use to put on the playground so children can use their imaginations and pretend they are sailing the open sea. You may even see if you can find an old anchor or buoy for added character.Written July 6, 2015 by