Parents Rally To Keep Jacobson Park Playground Creative

Jul 3, 2014

News that the “creative” playground at Lexington’s Jacobson Park was slated for replacement has spawned an online movement to save the structure.

Jacobson Park Playground

But safety concerns are at the forefront of city planners’ minds.

The large complex of mostly wooden bridges, turrets, and chutes has bordered the lake at Jacobson Park for more than two decades. And parents alarmed by reports that the city plans to replace the playground are taking to the internet to register their disapproval.

Rachel Carpenter launched the “Save Jacobson Park Playground” Facebook page and online petition that has topped 1,100 signatures. “Unlike the modern play set which presents itself in its entirety as soon as you arrive,” the petition reads, “Jacobson provides the user the many, many paths and locations to explore.”

Lexington Parks and Recreation Director Brad Chambers says the problem is how weatherworn the structures have become.

"Just like your back deck or anything else that's been out in the sun for 20-something years, it's going to start to rot and splinter and warp and do all the things that wood does and that's a concern to us," Chambers says.

The worry for some parents is that safety concerns will trump creativity, leaving Jacobson with a generic modern playground.

Public meetings have not been scheduled yet, but $300,000 has been allocated by the city to replace the playground.