New all ability playgrounds coming to El Paso

El Paso News

EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) Construction on three new all ability playgrounds will start in 2020. Including Ascarate Park in the Lower Valley, Gallegos Park in Canutillo and Risinger Park in Fabens.

The El Paso County Parks and Recreation Department has partnered with Moms on Board a local non-profit to build these playgrounds. They will be accessible to anyone of any age with any disability. As well as making it accessible for parents with disabilities so they can play alongside their children.

“Unitary surfacing is good for anyone that is in a wheelchair and needs to navigate around or someone who has a hard time walking,” said Adrianne Moody the Co-Founder of Moms on Board.​​ “Another great asset to an all-ability playground is to put a fence around it because some children get a little nervous and get scared and they’ll just dart off to the street.”​

There are no playgrounds in the region that offer all ability access. They will include sensory areas for children to calm down and will have elements for people with down syndrome who are blind or deaf. Allowing everyone to play side by side.

“It’s very special to me and I’m sure it will be very special to them. Everyone loves to see their kids happy and enjoying life and that will give them the opportunity to be part of that,” said Jesse Donacio an El Paso father of two.

The playgrounds will be paid for with a $1 million grant from the Texas Parks and Wildlife. However, tax dollars will also be used.

“We will be putting some local taxpayer money toward this but the vast majority of the funding for these projects is coming from a State grant with the Texas Parks and Wild Life Department as well as money from Moms on Board,” said David Stout an El Paso County Commissioner for precinct two.

The total cost to begin working on the playgrounds is $2 million dollars

  • $1 million grant from Texas Parks and Wildlife.
  • $750,000 from Moms on Board.
  • $250,000 from the County of El Paso.

Moms on Board says they will have three years to complete the parks but hope they will be completed much sooner. Moms on Board is still raising money for the project you can find more information on their website.

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