Love Parks? Invest in Reliable Outdoor Flooring Options

Prepare and repair local parks, playgrounds and greens for Love Parks Week this July with the best outdoor flooring options and solutions. From artificial grass to creative, accessible pathways, your parks and local community deserve the best. Choose from a range of innovative and sustainable surfaces to find the best solution for local parks.

Making decisions for public park developments can be difficult. Because of the many options and variations of surfacing available, and the needs for safety, sustainability, and budgeting that stakeholders demand, choices may seem impossible. Therefore, PlaySmart is here with a guide on how local authorities, parish councils, and private developers can best plan and develop their outdoor flooring options.

Importance of Local Green Spaces for Community Building

Parks and playgrounds are essential gathering places for communities to come together, get active, and make connections. A well-maintained public space contributes to the feeling of a safe space for play, social gatherings and individual users to enjoy their visits. Reliable outdoor flooring can transform a park from a simple recreational area into a vibrant community hub.

By providing safety surfacing, parks can give families peace of mind to encourage play, sport, and activity. Therefore, we recommend investing in accredited safety surfacing for any park or play area looking for refurbishment or resurfacing. For more information on our popular park safety surfacing, get in touch with an inquiry for a free and quick quote or call our team.

Additionally, PlaySmart’s wide range of surfacing also provides many other benefits that public playgrounds should consider in their planning process. From sustainable surface materials to creative and colourful designs, play surfacing makes for a great foundation for a well-rounded park space that your local community and park stakeholders will love.

Protecting Surfaces during Summer Park Events

Park events and heavy use during the summer can cause problems for the long-term value of parks. Pathways can become muddy, natural lawns get patchy, and surfacing fades. As well as impacting the aesthetic value of the park, this can harm the longevity of the surface itself. Over time it can reduce the quality of safety protection and perpetrating damages from typical wear-and-tear or even vandalism.

Grass Mats

PlaySmart’s grass mat system are the best option for premier safety surfacing, creating non-intrusive safety for natural grass lawns and fields. The honeycomb structure allows grass to naturally grow through while creating a layer of protection for the grass at the root and the soil quality. Installation in early summer allows for a lush green grass to grow through, disguising the rubber protective matting while still providing effective safety protection.

FireSmart grass mats are an additional option for public parks and playgrounds this summer. These mats are certified under BS EN 1176 to provide self-extinguishing fire-protection in under 60 seconds. Public gatherings and community activities can have significant fire risks. Although parks have rules around smoking and barbeques, activities can still occur and cause risks. With the hot summer predicted in the UK this year, sparks or even vandalism can cause problems for dry grass and wooden playground equipment with no protection.

Maintaining Accessible Pathways

Common pathway materials can begin to crack or subside at the edges, making full accessibility for buggies, wheelchairs and other mobility devices incomplete. Public spaces should always strive for full inclusivity, therefore, smooth, non-slip surfaces with minimal maintenance requirements and a long lifespan are essential for pathways and walkways.

Rubber mulch is a durable material that uses recycled rubber to create a reliable, shock-absorbent surface perfect for any pathways. Rubber mulch upkeep involves simple sweeping and occasional low pressure hosing. Therefore, even in busy periods when usage may outpace maintenance, pathways and play surfaces don’t suffer as much wear and tear as other options.

Reducing Mud in During Events

During park-wide events, certain busy areas can get overrun and overused, creating risks of mud that can cause a safety issue and look unappealing. We recommend velour carpet surfacing to help reduce mud in high use areas. The weather-resistant, easy to clean surface is a simple yet effective outdoor flooring solution.

Vibrant and Creative Park Design

This summer, many parks are looking to enhance visitors’ experiences with creative, unique design aesthetics. Green lawns, vibrant pathways, and inventive patterns can revitalise old, tired parks and make playgrounds more engaging for children.

Rubber flooring comes in a number of varieties with a range of uses and benefits. The aesthetic options and creative opportunities it provides are vast. But additionally, it can provide reliable and consistent safety protection and shock-absorption to reduce risks of injury on the playground.

The manufacture of rubber flooring materials allows for a large standard colour range as well as custom colour blends on request. Wetpour rubber consists of EPDM granules mixed on site and laid in sections to create clean lines for patterns and creative designs. This creates a highly versatile surface with colours that won’t fade. Also, EPDM patches or surface layers can add extra protection to high-use areas and create small areas of colour to reinforce older, faded surfacing.

Wetpour with our EPDM system is therefore perfect for creating thematic play markings, colourful designs, and inbuilt pathways with unique surfaces. PlaySmart’s park design strives to match the purpose and local personality that makes each park special.

Sustainable Parks

Natural looking options to enhance local environments and reinforce natural grass or tree lines are a great way to create a unique park. More and more local authorities are looking to promote sustainability and embrace green design in their parks and community areas. Therefore, PlaySmart’s range of natural surfacing is the perfect match for parks wanting a natural look whilst promoting eco-friendly design with judicious material use.

JungleMulch

JungleMulch provides a natural appearance, mimicking play bark without the risk of scattering or need for refills. Our installation team mixes recycled rubber mulch with a high-strength binding agent to ensure a durable, shock-absorbent surface. Additionally, the porous surface is a great option for protecting tree roots, preventing puddles and flooding, and limiting soil erosion at the tree line.

Overall, this material is a great option that blends into the green environment of any park with a range of natural colour blends. All while providing protection for both visitors and surrounding vegetation.

Corkeen

Corkeen flooring is a modern innovation in sustainable park flooring. A long-held favourite of private developers and landscape architects, the design of this natural cork flooring material ensures stability, safety, as well as emphasising sustainability. The dual-layer structure of Corkeen ensures a soft landing for user on play equipment, while facilitating a durable surface with a stronger lower layer. This surface above all strives to be the go-to choice for local authorities with a focus on improving local sustainability.

We source the cork material from Amorim, using the outer layer of cork trees and ensuring replanting and growth of forests. Therefore, we have calculated the material to have a carbon negative CO2 balance. This means that Corkeen removes more atmospheric carbon through these mitigation methods than it adds throughout the manufacture process.

Hybrid Grass

Hybrid Grass is an increasingly common choice for play fields and lawns. Incorporating synthetic grass into natural lawns provides extra protection to existing grass growth and soil quality while providing reinforcement to patchy, high-use areas of lawn.

Our clients love this alternative to pure artificial grass because it maintains the natural aesthetic of real grass while reducing muddy conditions even during wet weather. This ultimately improves accessibility by stabilising the ground.

Budgeting for Park Developments

When considering surfacing refurbishment or installations, budgeting is critical for park developers and stakeholders. While initial costs are important, park developments should factor in the long-term durability and maintenance expenses of any choice. Our surfaces have an installation guarantee of 5 years, and a product guarantee of 7 years. This means that our surfaces bring reliable safety and stability for years after installation, giving your parks an effective foundation for longer.

Also, our repairs and resurfacing team are available if heavy wear and tear occurs and typical maintenance is not enough. With the use of EPDM wear pads, a non-disruptive repairs technique for a range of damages, our team can get your surfaces functional and renewed in no time.

An additional concern in the busy season is the disruption of visitors that occurs during longer installations. Quick, simple installations help to reduce the time that each area of the park is closed to visitors. Therefore, we recommend rubber mulch or grass mat installation with minimal groundworks for areas that need urgent replacement during the high of the busy summer period.

Love Parks? Choose PlaySmart

The Smart choice for park flooring of any kind is PlaySmart. Having worked for 20 years in the outdoor surfacing industry, we know the needs and specifications of public parks and the local authority stakeholders involved. Get in touch with us today to request a quick quote or ask any questions for how to best manage your local park resurfacing project.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *