Home Carrollton Plans for All-Inclusive Playground in the Works for Carrollton

Plans for All-Inclusive Playground in the Works for Carrollton

A new project is underway in Carrollton where everyone can prepare to join the fun. The All Ages and Abilities Park is a universally-accessible, all-inclusive playground that will be located at Hobb’s Farm. The park will be a safe play area for children and adults with or without disabilities and will have 100 percent accessibility for anyone with any type of disability. The surface of the playground is what will enable anyone with a mobility device to move around all portions of the playground without restrictions. 

Connie McNiel, a Carrollton small business owner and real estate photographer, worked with Make-A-Wish for many years when she lived in Chattanooga, Tennessee. During that time her passion for this demographic led her to support many children with various disabilities. Prior to moving to the Carroll County area, she assisted a set of parents who had a son with severe special needs bring an accessible playground to the Chattanooga area; but due to both parties’ relocating, the plan was put on hold. McNiel’s move to Carrollton was right before the Covid-19 pandemic hit hard, so she could not get in front of people. She drove around Carroll County checking out all the playgrounds and observed none of them had full accessibility for those with disabilities. “I believed that I needed to do that here. So that’s why I’m doing this, for the people that need it. You know, it’s our civil right to have accessibility; and any of us at any given time could develop a disability, whether it’s through an accident or, you know, physical illness. But the point is, all public places should have accessibility, especially playgrounds. The children that have those disabilities have the right to have access to enjoy something like that, just like an otherwise healthy physical child,” McNiel said. 

According to McNiel, in Carroll County, GA, 10.6% (13,206) out of the population of 124,592 people have a disability. The ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) requires access to public recreation spaces, our civil right. However, ADA standards are still not fully accessible. She noted that Safari Park in Carrollton has one accessible ramp, but once you enter the playground structure, there is no exit for someone in a wheelchair if another mobility device is entering via that ramp. The plan for the AAA Park is to have access ramps that are double in width, providing enough space for two-way travel on the ramp, so individuals can come and go at the same time. The surfacing will be pour-in-place rubber with playground turf. “Which means there will be no wood chips at all because wood chips are dangerous. You can get one wood chip on a surface and if someone tries to go over it, they could actually get stuck with an accident,” McNiel said. There will be additions made to the existing bathrooms to include two electric powered, adult-sized changing tables. 

Construction does not have a set date to begin as the team must reach their budget of $2.5 million for the entire project. The City of Carrollton donated Hobbs Farms property for the project and will maintain the park once it is completed. The AAA Park Project is a 501(3)(c) organization established through the Community Foundation of West Georgia which is facilitating community donations towards the project. Those who would like to donate can do so at the following link https://cfwg.fcsuite.com/erp/donate/create/fund?funit_id=2716. Individuals who would like to donate via check can make it payable to: Community Foundation of West Georgia for/to: AAA PARK. There are also options for sponsors to contribute at various tiers including diamond, platinum, gold, silver, and bronze; names of the giving groups’  members will be displayed with the company logo and name in various designated areas in the park.The AAA Park Facebook page is https://www.facebook.com/AAAParkCarrolltonGa.

To see a full video you can take a look at these two Youtube links below:

Music Garden: https://youtu.be/nIx3flr7pY0

City of Carrollton: https://youtu.be/wF88yhlJxdI

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Kennae Hunter is an Athens native who made her way west after attending UWG and graduating in 2021 with a Mass Communication degree. She enjoys reading books, watching true crime, and playing Fortnite in her free time. Kennae is a very passionate writer and finds happiness in storytelling and bringing news to the community. Kennae also loves to shop and listen to music as a form of self-care.