After years of work from the PTO and community, Meramec Elementary School announced Friday plans to build a new playground.
“We are thrilled Meramec is getting a new playground,” outgoing Meramec PTO President Jenny Abeles said in a statement. “The PTO and the entire Meramec community has worked for the past six years to make this a reality.”
The new structure is expected to have three slides on a variety of levels, stairs, tunnels and ramps. The fun expands below the equipment, with spaces to congregate and play. The equipment, which is all-age appropriate, is expected to be completed by this fall when students return to school.
Other features include a ten spin — a modern take on a merry-go-round — along with climbing structures adjacent to the main equipment and swings.
The new structure will be built upon the current blacktop while the current playground will be transformed into a full naturespace by the end of the 2018-2019 school year. In addition, students will be able to learn outdoors in a new covered classroom complete with a wood chip surface, stepping stone trail and a wooden bridge.
“We wanted to make sure that we are reaching children with different interests,” Abeles said. “From the new naturescape area with secret pathways and sensory gardens to a new play structure with a rope climber and swings, we are confident that our Meramec children are going to have a blast on this new playground.”
As for the playing surfaces on the new playground, school officials said the new play structure will be installed with Shaw PlaySafe 50 artificial turf, which is made from a plastic material found in most households (milk cartons, shampoo bottles, freezer bags, cereal box liners, etc.). It is manufactured from a non-abrasive polyethylene specifically for outdoor use and treated with a UV stabilizer to resist the effects of ultraviolet degradation. The product contains no lead, heavy metals, or toxic substances. The cushioning pad is made from 99 percent recycled, non-contaminated post-industrial cross link, closed cell polyethylene foam and is 100 percent recyclable and free from lead, heavy metals and rubber. The surface under the new swing set will have engineered wood fiber.