Jefferson City Parks, Recreation & Forestry
The Sugarbaker Foundation
The Architects Alliance
Jefferson City, MO
The Sugarbaker Play Park is a one-of-a-kind, universally accessible, and nature-focused play landscape that builds upon a century of evolving concepts of play, including natural, loose-parts, adventure, and sculpture playgrounds.
Situated on the original Sugarbaker Orchard – now the Sugarbaker Foundation – the site includes the original home, extensive open field areas, woodland, and a pond. The master plan provides a cohesive framework for how those areas may be unified, while anticipating the integration of further developments on site, including event staging areas and a new school.
Unlike a traditional centralized and enclosed accessible playground, this project conceives of a destination play park that is fully integrated into the landscape; comprising a series of accessible, interconnected and play-activated pathways and nodes that invite children of all ages and abilities to learn, explore and play.
The project maintains a cohesive identity across a diverse range of site typologies through a curated material palette and a unifying “Missouri Creatures” concept, which guides the design of each individual play node to reference a different one of Missouri’s many native and adapted insects, birds, and mammals.