Evelyn Court Play Area

Architecture Design : Ashvin de Vos with Erect Architecture
Project Architect : Ashvin de Vos
Location : Hackney, London
Client : Daniel Fitzpatrick with The Learning Trust, London Borough of Hackney
Area : 750 sqm
Completed : July 2010
Budget : £56,000
Photographer : James Whitaker

The Evelyn Court play area is an extension to an existing early-years playground located in a high density housing estate in Hackney. The only available green space within the estate was situated on a raised level adjacent to the existing playground and was fenced off and inaccessible to the community. The objective was to make the green space accessible and usable, establish a connection between the levels in a playful manner and create an entrance of a different kind into the estate.

The design is comprised of a series of geometrical mounds of different character. The mounds are either solid earth forms, timber structures or climbing nets. They offer interesting spaces on top, underneath and in-between for both play and socialising. These in-between spaces facilitate different rhythms and speeds of activities. They are as valued by the children as the more traditional pieces of play equipment, providing incentive to imaginatively explore, inhabit and take ownership of the playground.

It was key to create a playground for children of different ages to play together. We were keen to integrate seating and social areas for older children and adults overseeing their children, to make the site accessible and usable for all. We kept the existing under 5s area and redefined the edges towards the older area to be more open and usable as seating for parents.