Calwa Park in Fresno, California is an out-of-this-world playground full of galactic space adventures. Preceded by a 1950s metal rocket play structure, the rehabilitation of Calwa Park is inspired by an outer space theme. Designed with WRT, and Fresno Building Healthy Communities (Fresno BHC), in consultation with the community, Calwa Park is a public space for social, cultural, and playful activities. The project is funded by California’s Prop 68 Grant Program.
“Imagination will often carry us to worlds that never were. But without it we go nowhere.” – Carl Sagan
The playground has multiple areas designed for different ages and abilities. The most challenging senior play zone features an intergalactic planetary orbit climber. Children will use their imaginations and knowledge of space to envision a ringed planet or perhaps multiple planets orbiting the sun.
A communications tower serves as a command center, creating a visual centerpiece to the play area as well as a chance to ascend high up in space and feel a suspended sensation while messaging with earthlings via talk tubes. Access into the tower includes a Log Jam in the shape of Ursa Major or by climbing the adjacent crystal cluster.
A larger cluster of crystals creates a play space that can be experienced at ground level or by climbing. Some crystals have polished stainless steel sides that are reflective, creating a house of mirrors sensation!
In the junior play area, a flaming meteor makes such an impact that the ground ripples! Play posts erupt from the ground, creating an impact chaos climber.
There are lots of options to swing with a Giant Rope Swing, a Triple Bay Swing of belt and basket seats, and a Double Tot Swing in the area for the youngest children. The tot area also includes a mini-hill slide with an accessible transfer bench and a rock scramble. A sand and water play zone includes two water pumps and a magnacus with custom magnetic beads shaped like mini-flying saucers!
The entire park and playground area includes many areas with shade, space for picnics, and a sensory garden.