Great Parks plans new ‘destination’ playground in Sharon Woods

Construction has started on a new $3 million playground in Sharon Woods that Great Parks believes will become a “destination” for families across Hamilton County and perhaps beyond.

The future 10,000 square-foot play space will be more than twice the size of the current jungle gym at the park site on Lebanon Road. Design elements are the result of what Great Parks called extensive feedback and input from residents, including an interactive workshop with children.

The playground will feature a variety of natural materials and the look will reflect the character and landscape of Sharonville park, specifically taking inspiration from local wildlife and the rocky terrain and waterfalls found in the Sharon Creek Gorge.

Plans call for things such as an accessible play unit in the shape of a crayfish as well as elevated nest-like structures that’ll invite children and tweens to climb them.

An on-site groundbreaking ceremony took place April 10 next to Sharon Centre. During the event, Todd Palmeter – the CEO of Great Parks – stressed his belief that children and families are going to love this “inclusive new adventure where they will create memories to last a lifetime.”

The playground will open in fall 2024.

“This playground is the latest example of our continuing partnership with the community and will become a signature experience that enhances Sharon Woods as a treasured regional asset,” Palmeter said.

Enhancing green spaces across Hamilton County

Great Parks of Hamilton County formed in 1930 as the Hamilton County Regional Park District. It’s a separate political subdivision of the state of Ohio, governed by a board of park commissioners.

Today, the Great Parks system includes more than two dozen adventure areas across Hamilton County, ranging from traditional parks and greenspaces to Parky’s Farm and Little Miami Golf Center. 

Over the past several years, Great Parks has worked to enhance many of its sites through a variety of major projects. These types of efforts can range from building a shared-use trail to fixing an aging sewage system to reforesting a riverbank.

Great Parks has completed six such project recently and has another eight underway. Earlier this year, work began on a multimillion-dollar rejuvenation of Sharon Lake, which is inside the same 730-acre park as the newly under-construction playground.

The Sharon Woods playground is one of five play area refreshes planned in the near future. Other sites include Miami Whitewater Forest, Sharon Woods Harbor, Winton Woods and Woodland Mound. Adding in future years as well.

Funding comes from the 0.95-mill levy approved by voters in 2021 to support critical infrastructure needs and master plan initiatives.

Great Parks Projects

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