I was surprised, and dissapointed, to learn that the Panhandle's playground earned a D in the 2010 San Francisco Playground Report Card.
I'd first like to encourage families in the community to keep using and enjoying the playground. Don't let the D grade turn you off. Speaking as a non-parent, I think it's a popular destination in a beautiful setting. Yesterday morning, under threatening grey skies, dozens of kids and parents visited the playground, and no one seemed to have problems with safety or cleanliness. (The Park Stewards were out for Saturday work day, working to beautify and nurture the plantings around perimeter of the playground. Report coming soon).
from By Lorena on Flickr
I'd also like to compare the grades for the surrounding parks. I grabbed a part of a map showing neighborhood parks (from the 2008 report), and superimposed each park's 2010 grade. The result shows that neighborhood families have nearby "A" grade playground at Alamo Square to the east, and at Rossi and Sharon Arts (i.e., Koret) to the west. But, sadly, our D grade for the Panhandle is the worst in this square-mile or so of San Francisco.
More important context is that San Francisco has been upgrading playgrounds. Only 13% of playgrounds earned a D or F in this year's report card. That's down from 21% in 2008.
That leads up to my questions:
- Does the playground deserve a D grade? What do neighborhood parents think of conditions, and what would they change?
- What is in store for the Panhandle Playground? If it's not on the list for renovation now, when will it be?
- What are the most important park-wide issues (such as tree care, turf care, multi-use path, bad behavior) that affect your ability to access and enjoy the playground?
- Who are the community leaders for this playground?