Serbia’s third Creative Playground opens

25 May 2017
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Serbia’s third Creative Playground opens in KragujevacBelgrade Design Week have collaborated on a third Creative Playground as a way for city inhabitants to participate in their urban green areas.

The “Creative Grand Park” is a result of collaboration between the City of Kragujevac, Foundation “Dragica Nikolić” and Belgrade Design Week, as part of the the "Human Cities/ Challenging the City Scale 2014 - 2018” project, co-financed by the Creative Europe program of the EU.

As the Serbian representative in the EU program, BDW’s project is built as the first private – public partnership of its kind. The playground was jointly financed by the Foundation “Dragica Nikolić” and the City of Kragujevac, following the principles of participatory urbanism including the ideas of the residents of Kragujevac.

The project covers the area of about 10.000 square meters in the Grand Park of Kragujevac, at a formerly neglected location, and consists of a cutting-edge designed children’s playground, a modern youth parkour exercise unit and the first ever seniors’ motoric training grounds, with latest equipment produced by the Finnish company Lappset. The units are connected with biomorphic gravel-strewn paths and green areas with newly designed park furniture, with a fountain as centrepiece, designed to function as water-piazzeta.

Belgrade Design Week's first two “creative parks” were built at the Kalemegdan fortress park in Belgrade, but the location in Kragujevac offers clearly more opportunities for entertainment and relaxation due to its size and complexity. The project has been implemented under the guidance of architect Aleksandar Vuja from the Faculty of Architecture, University of Belgrade. Vuja stated that the whole project is understood as an encouragement for the inhabitants to take part in their constantly evolving contemporary city, and start a debate about future planning of green areas in Kragujevac and their integration with the Memorial Park Šumarice.

“Our aim is to build 100 playgrounds like this in Serbia. Searching for the most needed implementation of “design thinking” and "participative-urbanism” in Serbia today, Belgrade Design Week has identified the most neglected and weakest members of the population, namely children, youth and seniors, who need assistance in improving the quality of their everyday life", said Jovan Jelovac, founder of Belgrade Design Week.

At the opening, representatives of eleven European cities gathered around the HUMAN CITIES project, joined the park tour with guests and media from Serbia and the region. Soon they handed the scenography over to its intended audience - the children, the youth and seniors from Kragujevac, with the hope that this project would become a sort of “destination park“ for the whole city, like the previous two playgrounds in Belgrade.

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