Frequently Asked Questions
The topics below cover a wide array of questions relating to safety, slides and sustainability. We hope you find what you’re looking for. If not, drop us a line.
Are you publicly- or privately-held?
Landscape Structures has been privately held since the commercial playground equipment manufacturer was founded in 1971 by Barb and Steve King. The company has been employee-owned (ESOP) since 2004.
Where is Landscape Structures located?
Our company headquarters and manufacturing facility is located in Delano, Minn., approximately 25 miles west of Minneapolis. We work with playground consultants who are local to you to best service your needs.
Where can I buy a playground?
Just contact your local Landscape Structures playground consultant. They will tell you about all the playground products and play structures we offer, create a personalized playground design for you, and provide all the details you need for a successful playground project.
How do I choose my playground products?
Your local Landscape Structures playground consultant will work with you to create a completely unique playground that fits your site and budget requirements.
Why are your playground products different?
We are the playground experts. With more than 40 years of experience, we create the highest-quality, safest and most innovative playground products available. Visit a Playground near you today; you’ll be able to tell the difference right away. Landscape Structures playgrounds last longer, look better, stay safer and thrill more kids, year after year.
We are committed to using environmentally preferable products. How can you help?
Landscape Structures is an environmentally preferable vendor and can work with you to create a highly sustainable playground that will support your healthy, sustainable community.
Do I have to work with someone from your headquarters on my project?
No; that’s part of the Landscape Structures difference. You’ll work closely with your local playground consultant and receive completely personalized—and complimentary—service. Every consultant is an expert on playgrounds and will help you choose your site and playground products, create unique playground designs, and help arrange installation.
How long do your playgrounds last?
What’s great about a Landscape Structures playground is that it is designed, engineered and built to last for a generation or more—not just a few years. You won’t have to worry about constantly replacing or repairing your playground equipment. And that means better long-term value!
What is an accessible playground?
An accessible playground is one in which kids of all abilities can access the playground and play together. At Landscape Structures, we believe playgrounds should go beyond accessible and be fully inclusive to truly support the needs of all users.
Does accessible just refer to kids using wheelchairs?
Traditionally, making a playground accessible meant adding features like ramps so kids using wheelchairs or other mobility devices could access the play events. Now, more types of disabilities are being addressed by experts, and playgrounds are being designed differently. We call this type of design A Higher Level of Inclusive Play™, and we create designs for kids with all types of challenges, interests and abilities.
What types of abilities/disabilities do you consider when designing your playgrounds?
Our personalized playground designs offer play events and activities for kids of all abilities and interests. Whether kids have mobility issues, sensory issues, or emotional, cognitive or developmental disabilities, we can create inclusive play environments that meet the needs of everyone.
How do you design your playgrounds differently?
Our playground designs promote a Higher Level of Inclusive Play™ by addressing accessibility, age and developmental appropriateness and sensory stimulating activity. Playgrounds can offer many opportunities for children to further develop physical, cognitive, sensory and social skills. An inclusive design includes a balance of play experiences to build all these skills.
What if my kids have a special need that you don’t address in your product line?
That’s where our custom design department comes in. Our goal is to create meaningful play experiences for every child, so let us know if we can create something unique and amazing to meet the needs of your child.
What is an age-appropriate playground?
Children of all ages love to play on playgrounds! An age-appropriate playground is one that was designed with age-appropriate physical and mental challenges that has limited risk of injury for that age group.
What are the typical age ranges for a playground?
Most often you’ll see playgrounds designed for children ages 2 to 5 (PlayShaper® and Weevos®) and ages 5 to 12 (PlayBooster® and Evos®). There is also specialty playground equipment for ages 6 to 23 months.
What if I have more than one age range of children to consider?
The great thing about completely personalized playground designs is that you can create areas for both younger and older children. Everyone will be sufficiently challenged and stay interested. And, even better, the younger children will grow into the “big kids” area.
What kinds of activities do younger children enjoy?
Younger children (ages 2 to 5) are just beginning to explore their world and actively use their imaginations! Depending on the specific age and development of the child, they may like slides, learning walls, mazes and smaller-scale climbers. Sensory play events, like sand and water tables are also popular.
What benefits do younger children get from playgrounds?
There are myriad benefits for children! They use their muscles, their minds, their imaginations and more! They improve their balance, strength, coordination and even build social skills. The playground is a terrific place for young children to learn, develop and have fun at the same time.
What about older children? How do I keep them interested?
Older children demand movement and a wide variety of activities! You can appeal to them with exciting climbers that have increasing levels of challenge, like Aeronet™ climbers and the Evos™ playsystem, higher and faster slides, spinners like the Orbiter™, and more complex play routes and overhead play events.
What benefits do older children gain from playgrounds?
Children can build their muscles and their imaginations on the playgrounds. A challenging play event will give kids chances to figure it out or discover new ways to play. Older kids can also create their own games, races and other activities. Overhead events and playground climbers in particular help kids get and stay fit.
What if I can only afford to build a small playground? How do I serve all children?
There are two ways you can be successful. The first way is to consider building your playground in phases. You can install one play area now and know you’ll add on in the future. The second choice is to create a playground where you can have some play events for younger children and for older children. Your Landscape Structures playground consultant can help you design the perfect playground to meet your specific needs, including your site and budget. You may be surprised at what you can afford!
What is a Community Built Playground?
A Community Built Playground is one in which you supply the playground installers, typically volunteers from your community.
What are the benefits of a Community Build project?
The biggest benefit is budgetary: You can save up to 30 percent on the total price of your playground project by installing it yourself. Plus, a Community Built Playground fosters a great sense of pride and is a fun way to bring a community together.
Does someone supervise the installation?
That’s where your local Landscape Structures playground consultant can help. He or she can help supervise or appoint another playground expert to provide tips and guidance.
How do I get started on a Community Build project?
Landscape Structures has a free, highly-comprehensive Community Build program binder that gives you all the information you need to get started, conduct your community build project installation and more. You’ll learn what equipment is required, and your local playground consultant will work with you to determine how many volunteers you should recruit.
Who can participate in a Community Build project?
Community members, teachers, parents and just about anyone else can help with the installation! The playground or skatepark package includes easy-to-use instructions, and everyone can find a satisfying role in the project. Generally on the day of the build, volunteers are limited to those 18 years and older.
What special products or features do you provide to make the installation easier?
Only Landscape Structures offers unique hardware packages for each piece of commercial playground equipment, so no more guessing what goes where. Every piece of equipment has clear and easy-to-understand installation instructions that keep everything running smoothly.
What about product spacing and other considerations?
Your unique playground design will provide you with all the information you need to correctly install your playground pieces at a pre-planned safe distance apart.
How about safety surfacing?
Safety surfacing is put down after your playground installation is completed. It’s usually easy to install, whether you are using shredded rubber, pea gravel or treated wood chips. Bond-in-place and poured-in-place safety surfacing should be installed by certified playground surfacing experts.
What elements are included in a playground?
Playgrounds can include many elements, depending on your site, budget and ages of children who will be using it. Typically, a playground includes a composite play structure that consists of several attached play events. These can include slides, play panels, decks, playground climbers and overhead events. Then, your playground can also offer freestanding components, separate from the composite structure, like climbers, swings, ride-on events, spinners and additional slides. Every playground also needs some type of safety surfacing underneath — like shredded rubber, poured-in-place rubber or treated wood chips — to reduce injuries.
What is a play structure?
A play structure is a playground structure with several play events that are attached to one another. A play structure utilizes the “continuous play” concept, and kids can participate in many activities without touching the ground.
What is a play event?
A play event, or play component, is a piece of commercial playground equipment that attaches to a play structure and provides an activity. Examples of play events include swings, slides, play panels, climbers and spinners.
What is a freestanding component?
A freestanding component, or standalone play event, is a piece of commercial playground equipment that is not attached to a play structure. Some examples are Saddle Spinners, ride-on events, independent swings, Aeronet® climbers and Mobius® climbers.
What is an overhead event?
An overhead event is suspended above the ground and requires primarily upper body strength. Examples of overhead events include overhead ladders, Track Rides, the Swing Out™ and the RingTangle® overhead event for our Evos® play system.
What is a play panel?
A play panel offers an individual playground activity. Also known as an enclosure, these panels are designed to inform and educate, and let kids use their creativity. Some examples include the Tic-Tac-Toe panel, the Periscope panel and the Hourglass panel.
What is a play structure deck?
Decks are used to support the play structure and provide a platform on which kids can stand. They are usually manufactured with sturdy steel and offer a coating to keep them cool in the summer and warm in the winter. Playground decks come in many shapes to provide design flexibility, from hexagons to triangles to octagons.
What is a play structure roof?
Play structure roofs provide both a design element and shade from the sun's UV rays. They come in several materials, including polyethylene, galvanized steel or covered in fabric, such as our CoolToppers® shade products for playgrounds.
What are play structure bridges?
Play structure bridges provide a fun way for kids to move from one end of a play structure to the other. They may be comprised of poly pods, steel with bouncy action, perforated steel or nylon-reinforced rubber, and may be straight, curved or arched.
What is a play structure climber?
A playground climber gives kids an opportunity to use their muscles and their creativity. Climbers may be attached to a play structure or may stand alone. They may be similar to a rock climbing wall or climbing stone, a spider web, a fire pole or many other styles. They may be three-dimensional or flat, take kids from the top to bottom of a play structure or let them climb up, down and over. Examples include Aeronet® Climbers, Mobius® climbers, Starburst™ climbers and Nature-Inspired Climbers.
How do I get started on a playground project?
We offer a great guide that takes you step-by-step through the playground planning process. Your local Landscape Structures playground consultant can also help you with site selection, budget, playground design, installation and more. Even better, these services are complimentary.
Do you sell your products from your headquarters?
No; we have a global network of local, independent playground consultants who are playground experts and sell our products. They provide completely personalized assistance before, during and after your playground project.
What do I need to consider when planning a playground?
There are lots of questions to ask when planning a playground. Where is your site? How many children will use the playground? What are their ages? What are their interests? Are you planning on building your playground all at once, or are you thinking about building in phases? How much room do you have? What is your budget? Are you thinking about a traditional playground or would you like to add innovative playground elements? Who has to approve the design? Luckily, your local playground consultant can help you answer all these questions and more—at no charge!
How do I know what playground equipment to choose?
We offer hundreds of playground products that can be designed in thousands of configurations. That’s where your local Landscape Structures playground consultant can really be a valuable resource. They will work with you to create a safe, fun, budget-friendly playground design that kids will love.
What if I want a custom-themed playground? Can you do that?
Absolutely. If you have an idea for theme playgrounds in mind, just let us know! Our Custom Design department loves a challenge. From an alien theme to a castle, we can do it all. Just ask. We can create custom products and completely custom-themed playground designs.
I have a challenging site. Can I still build a playground?
We can almost always make a site work for your playground. Whether you’re dealing with an urban environment, hills, small spaces or any other challenge, we’ll work with you to make your playground dreams come true!
Will I get a playground that looks like everyone else’s?
No! Each of our playgrounds is completely personalized to your site, budget and the children who will be using it. We don’t offer the “cookie cutter” approach. We want your playground to completely reflect the unique personality of your community or organization.
How much do your playgrounds cost?
Because every single playground we create is completely unique, pricing varies. Your local Landscape Structures playground consultant can give you more detailed pricing.
Can I create my own playground design?
You can have lots of input on your design! Our expert designers will ensure that we create the perfect playground design for you and that your playground is safe and meets all current design and safety standards.
Can I download CAD files of your playground designs?
Yes; just go to the Our Playground section and find a playground idea that fits your needs. You’ll find the design files ready for your use.
We need help coming up with funds for our playground. Can you help?
We offer several options that can help. First, we work with a major financing company that can help you finance your playground. Plus, your Landscape Structures playground consultant can help you with some great fundraising ideas that can get you on your way faster. Also visit our Playground Fundraising section to learn more about fundraising sources.
Who might offer donations for our playground?
Try local businesses first. You might be surprised who is willing to donate funds to your playground project! Local and national foundations are also good places to start.
What about memorial or dedicated playgrounds?
In many communities and organizations, there are individuals, companies or others who would like to create (and fund) a playground that is dedicated to an individual, family or company. A little homework goes a long way.
We can only afford a small playground at this time. Is it worth building?
Of course! We have many customers that start small and phase in additional playground equipment as additional funds become available. This practice offers you flexibility in your fundraising timeline, and children don’t have to wait to play.
We are a small community. Where can we find funding or better pricing?
Check out our Financing Options section. On these pages we list several options, including leasing and our participation in national purchasing contracts. These offer the best pricing to public entities nationwide—school districts, colleges and universities as well as city, county and state agencies—without requiring the bidding process.
We are a government agency. Can we get better pricing?
Consider using GSA. As a GSA vendor, we can offer the best government pricing available for your playground or skatepark.
We are a Jewish Community Center. Do you work with our national organization?
Yes, we have been a preferred vendor of the JCC Association of playground and skatepark equipment for more than a decade.
We are a YMCA. Do you work with our organization?
Yes, we have been providing playground equipment to the Y through their preferred vendor program for more than 10 years.
What is considered to be a safe playground?
A safe playground is, fundamentally, one in which the likelihood of children getting hurt is minimized. Good design, safe equipment and sufficient safety surfacing all go into making a good, safe playground for children.
How does a playground design promote safety?
There are many considerations that go into creating a safe playground design. One is utilizing playground equipment that is appropriate for the ages of the children who will be using it. Another is allotting enough space between play events (called a "use zone") that keeps children from running into one another during play. Finally, the playground equipment needs to be durable enough to handle years of hard use.
How can I keep kids safe on the playground?
One of the best ways to keep kids safe is to choose super-durable equipment and keep it properly maintained. Sharp corners, worn finishes, gaps in the play events and lack of safety surfacing can all cause injuries. And they can all be easily avoided with playground supervision and some playground maintenance.
What about under the play equipment? Do I really need surfacing?
It’s equally important to use good safety surfacing under your playground equipment. That makes for smooth landings rather than hard falls. Every playground needs some type of safety surfacing underneath, like rubber tiles, poured-in-place or loose-fill material such as treated wood chips or pea gravel to reduce injuries. Be sure to keep in mind that any loose-fill material requires some maintenance to keep the depth sufficient.
What safety features do you have on your slides?
We are the only manufacturer to use sliding footers to help ensure slides don't pull away from decks or crack, which results in dangerous gaps that can entangle children's clothing. We also offer slide hoods that help kids transition into a safe, seated position at the top of playground slides.
Do you offer any safety features on your enclosures?
Our enclosures utilize flush-fit engineering: they're flush mounted directly to the outside of decks to eliminate gaps and provide more play area on decks.
What safety features do you offer on your PlayBooster® clamps for older kids?
Our PlayBooster® clamps—designed as aluminum die-cast half-clamps—for our PlayBooster® play structures feature 360 degrees of compression for a more secure fit to posts. Aluminum rivets adds shear strength for deck-supporting clamps.
How are your PlayShaper® posts for toddlers safe?
PlayShaper® posts are scaled just for preschoolers and are comfortable for little hands. Specially designed ridges on the playground posts diffuse heat and cold. A 1" space between posts and panels is added for extra safety.
Why are your Evos® ball connectors safe?
Our innovative and versatile ball-and-socket clamping system for our cast-aluminum ball connectors offers more than 6,500 pounds of clamping strength for durability and safety.
Are there any safety features on your playground hardware?
We use highly vandal-resistant hardware to keep your playground safe and secure.
What coatings do you offer for children's safety?
We protect tender hands from the temperature extremes of bare metal with our proprietary TenderTuff™ surface coating. It helps playgrounds stay cooler in summer, warmer in winter, and “grippier” all year long.
Why is your anodized aluminum better and safer?
Our anodized aluminum makes the Mobius® Climber for playgrounds rust-free and "grippy," and it refracts sunlight to stay cool all summer long.
What makes your Mobius® climber handholds safe?
Attached by two bolts, the textured-polyester resin handgrips and footholds stay tightly in place and provide gap-free playground safety for clothing and skin.
What makes your playground decks so different and safer?
Our playground decks are flange-formed from 12-gauge steel with safe, rounded corners. Flush-mounted to the outside of posts for more play space, they provide less chance for toes or hands to get caught.
What makes your shade fabric safer and the best choice for children on the playground?
Shade fabric, used in our SkyWays® and CoolToppers® shade products, blocks up to 97% of UV rays and keeps temperatures up to 30 degrees cooler.
Why are your seesaws safer?
Our torsion-powered spring mechanism is a fully-enclosed mechanism that maintains the proper balance of bouncy fun and controlled motion on our seesaws. No more bottoming out.
Why is your tire swing hanger better and safer than ordinary hangers?
Made from 100 percent stainless steel, our tire swing hangers utilize Oilite® bushings for a smooth, 360-degree rotation. With no bearings to replace or messy grease to worry about, they're virtually maintenance free. The swing chains thread directly through the hanger for a cleaner, safer connection.
What makes your Track Ride trolley safer than ordinary trolleys?
Four polyurethane roller skate wheels with ball bearings, a solid high-density polyethylene guide block and a TenderTuff™-coated handle make the Track Ride trolley cool, seamless and pinch-proof.
Why are your swivel point connectors safer than s-hooks?
Our swivel point connectors use self-lubricating "universal joints" that are stronger, safer and more flexible than lesser-quality s-hooks or clevis pins on playgrounds.
Why does a playground need safety surfacing?
The American Society for Testing and Materials (and similar regulatory groups) and the Consumer Product Safety Commission require that playground flooring comply with their standards and guidelines. According to the National Program for Playground Safety, falls account for over 70 percent of all injuries incurred on playgrounds. Installing playgrounds over dirt, grass, concrete or pavers with no safety surfacing is no longer an option. While falls are inevitable, playground flooring must be soft enough and thick enough to lessen the impact of a child's fall.
What types of playground surfacing are available?
There are two main types of playground surfacing: loose-fill and unitary. Loose fill consists of engineered wood fiber (EWF), playground sand, wood chips, pea gravel or loose rubber, and unitary surfacing consists of bond-in-place rubber, pour-in-place rubber, synthetic turf and resilient tiles.
What is loose-fill playground safety surfacing?
Loose-fill playground surfacing consists of engineered wood fiber (EWF), playground sand, wood chips, pea gravel or loose rubber. It has a lower up-front cost but requires more maintenance over the long term. It is not ideal for inclusive playgrounds as it is difficult to navigate with a mobility device.
What is unitary playground safety surfacing?
Unitary surfacing consists of energy-absorbing materials held in place by a binder that may be poured in place at the playground site and then cured to form a unitary shock-absorbing surface. Unitary safety surfacing options are bond-in-place rubber, pour-in-place rubber, synthetic turf and resilient tiles. It is the ideal option for playground safety and inclusiveness.
How much does playground safety surfacing cost?
Playground surfacing costs depend on surfacing materials, installation, ongoing maintenance and size of the playground. In general, unitary surfaces are a premium option and will cost more upfront, while loose-fill surfaces are initially a more economical choice. Over the long term, however, costs of loose-fill surfacing can be greater due to the requirement of more frequent inspection and maintenance. Reach out to your consultant for exact pricing.
Does playground safety surfacing need to be maintained?
The amount of necessary maintenance varies from surface to surface and no surface is completely maintenance free. Generally speaking, engineered wood fiber (EWF) and other loose-fill material need weekly and monthly inspections. For unitary surfaces, inspections can be done on a less frequent basis.
Can installing shock-absorbing playground surfacing reduce injuries?
Yes. According to the National Program for Playground Safety, more than 70 percent of all injuries that occur on the playground involve falls, and the majority of those injuries involve children falling onto unsafe surfaces. Due to its lower maintenance requirements, unitary surfacing stays safe for longer than loose-fill and as a result, is an ideal choice for playground safety.
What does sustainability have to do with playgrounds?
In a word, plenty! From building healthy, sustainable communities to the responsible use of materials to helping kids make great fitness choices, a playground can make a big statement about a community's commitment to sustainability.
What is a healthy, sustainable community?
This is a community that takes its future seriously, a community that wants to create healthier people and a healthier environment for generations to come. From increasing natural and green spaces to making it easier for the community to gather to promoting wellness, a sustainable community can mean many things. Every community is unique, so your sustainability plan will be unique as well.
How can my playground be more sustainable?
First, think about what goes into your new commercial playground equipment. Are the processes used in manufacturing the equipment sustainable? Does the company reuse and recycle materials? Do they respect the environment during the manufacturing process? Do they put careful thought, good materials and attention to quality into the playground equipment so it will last for decades, reducing the need to replace the equipment? Do they have a plan for the playground products after it has outlived its usefulness? These are all issues to consider when looking for a sustainable playground. Landscape Structures does all these things and so much more.
What does sustainability mean to the kids that play on my playground?
Healthy kids mean a healthy future for your community. Getting kids off the sofa and on the playground is one of the best ways to get them active, engaged and excited about exercise and fitness.
What are you doing to promote sustainability on the playground?
When selecting a manufacturer to supply your playground equipment, choose an organization that uses sustainable products and processes. At Landscape Structures, we have been building healthy, sustainable communities for more than a decade before being green was the hot trend. If you build a Landscape Structures playground, you can promote your community's commitment to sustainability as well with our Global ReLeaf sign.
What about your warranty?
We offer the very best playground warranty in the industry. In fact, most of our steel and aluminum components offer an amazing 100-year warranty! Ask your local playground consultant for more information.
Can you help with maintenance?
Landscape Structures offers resources to support your great maintenance program. We supply simple directions on how to inspect your playground and all the supplies you need to keep your playground safe and looking great. Ask your playground consultant for more information.
How do I install my playground?
You have a couple choices. Your local playground consultant can help you arrange professional installation of your playground. You can also choose a Community Build installation where you use volunteers. By choosing a Community Build, you can actually save up to 30 percent of the price of your playground. Plus, you’ll get complimentary supervision by either your playground consultant or another playground expert.