STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — A new sensory playground that will provide fun for all children, including those with autism spectrum disorder and sensory processing disorder, will be built in the E.M.T. Christopher J. Prescott Playground in Prince’s Bay.
The announcement was made on Tuesday by Borough President James S. Oddo, Councilman Joe Borelli (R-South Shore) and Borough Parks Commissioner Lynda Ricciardone.
“We want to see all of Staten Island enjoying our parks,” Oddo said. “When it comes to our kids, we want all of our kids to enjoy our parks. We want all of our kids with varying degrees of ability to enjoy our parks. I know of sensory playgrounds that allow kids of all abilities to utilize those playgrounds and I think we should do it on Staten Island.”
The playground will be designed to challenge the body’s senses. The equipment will include things like textured surfaces, patterns, shapes, talk tubes, musical play panels, swings, roller tables, balance walkers and climbers.
“This is the vision that we were hoping to achieve that we thought about incorporating a playground that children of all abilities, or regardless of their abilities, can come play,” Borelli said.
A total of $4 million in funding for the new playground has been included in the city’s fiscal year 2018 budget — which includes $3.9 million from the borough president’s office and $100,000 from Borelli’s office.
“We want to be able to have the children develop their physical coordination, social skills and the imaginative play behaviors in a shared peer-play setting,” Ricciardone said.