Playful Landscape Design Concepts & Water Play

By using non-typical materials and concepts, which we will refer to as Playful Landscapes, you can create play spaces that are unique and different by design. These types of commercial play spaces often become popular public playgrounds, drawing visitors from other areas because they are different by design and have non-typical play equipment creating those one-of-kind user experiences.

Play like no one’s watching

Playful landscapes can be defined as play spaces that offer a wide range of open-ended play options and allow people to be creative and use their imagination both in design and play.

Playful Landscape Design


Playful landscapes can look and feel like a natural environment; using rocks and boulders, or even mounds created within the play area using poured-in-place rubber safety surfacing, combined with handholds, nets and ropes for climbing.


Play spaces with slopes provide opportunities for safe risk taking and challenges while encouraging free play. Adding nets, ropes and hand holds encourage climbing the slopes, open slopes are great for rolling down or crawling up. Slopes add interest and dimension to play spaces.

Hillside Slides

Designs can incorporate the topography of the land where they are building the public play space adding another element of play. For example, a hillside slide or terraced play elevation change creating another dimension to your playground design.


Bouncers push the boundaries of traditional play by offering unique play opportunities throughout the play space and encourage physical development. The types of bouncers and their placement throughout the play area combined with mounds and other playful landscape concepts create unique multigenerational playgrounds.

Play Sculptures & Playground Equipment

Commercial playground equipment and recreational spaces can include pieces of playful art or play sculptures. Play sculptures add a touch of theme or a decorative look to any playground or outdoor gathering space for aesthetics. City centers or town squares often use playful art to add interest, use as a focal point or link its heritage to the community.

Outdoor Musical Instruments

Music is an expressive language that connects people. Adding outdoor musical instruments to your outdoor play spaces makes them inclusive and multigenerational. Experiencing music encourages healthy development including cognitive, emotional and social growth. It can be a passive or active form of play bringing joy to all.

Water Play Equipment

As the name suggests, water play is play that involves water as well as using manipulative and
interactive tools such as sprayers, bubblers, misters and buckets which allow children and their families
to experience splashing, spraying, pouring, cause and effect and sensory exploration.
Adding water play features and concepts to your designs adds interest, curb appeal and more
entertainment. So whether it’s spray cannons, bubblers or dancing fountains—it’s not FUN until
someone gets wet! Design with water in mind.

Splash Pads

Spray Features


Learn more about water play equipment.

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