Work continues on Playground build as unveiling approaches

Dave Dobrin owner of Dobrin Construction spent Thursday cutting and shaping the remaining rubber tiles made more time consuming due to the wet weather and the cold.

Contractors and city staff are busy working on the finishing touches needed to get the Olsrud Family Community Playground in Medford ready for a ribbon cutting planned for Saturday, December 15th at 11 a.m.

Dave Dobrin, owner of Dobrin Construction, spent Thursday cutting and shaping the remaining rubber tiles with others who say it's been more time consuming due to the wet weather and the cold. "The concrete has to be dry," Dobrin said. "The glue has to be heated to a certain temperature to properly adhere to the concrete."

Despite the delay, Dobrin expects the playground will be ready for the children this weekend.

Each 2-by-2-foot rubber tile weighs in excess of 20 pounds and they've almost laid all 4,000 available in an interlocking design. The playground floor covers 18,000 square feet. Rich Rosenthal, Parks, Recreation and Facilities Department Director says 1,100 workers have put in 6,400 hours since September 29th.

"This is a fantastic example. This project brought people together in more ways than can be counted," Rosenthal said.

The effort has brought in $400,0000 in financial and in-kind donations to replace the 1988 wood structure that was so beloved at Bear Creek Park.

"What people will notice immediately is how much bigger this playground is compared to its predecessor which was well used and well loved for 30 years," Rosenthal said.

Following the “community build” phase, Parks Division staff completed structural assembly tasks not requiring supervision by the playground manufacturer, Leathers & Associates. "It's bigger. It's better.. Has more features," Rosenthal said. "It checks off just about all the requests, not only from kids during the design process, but adults."

Some of the features include a swing designed to accommodate a child in a wheelchair called the "Liberty Swing."

"It's more accessible to people of all abilities. There are specific features that are unique to this playground," Rosenthal said. "This is a unique playground. There is nothing else like it anywhere else in the world."

Saturday's ribbon cutting is open to the public. Ribbon-cutting attendees are advised to use Bear Creek Park parking lots off Alba Drive and Highland Drive.

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