Children with special needs, disabilities, or sensory issues can face certain challenges when it comes to connecting with peers and making friends, especially when playing on a playground that isn't accessible and ADA-compliant. But when there is equipment geared specifically to children with special needs or disabilities on a playground for children of all abilities, it's a little easier for children with special needs to connect with peers and make friends. This is a complete list of accessible, ADA-compliant playgrounds in the New York metro area, where children of all abilities can safely play together.
Accessible playgrounds in New York City are broken into four levels based on the recreational opportunities they provide for children of differing ages and abilities, according to nycparks.gov.
Accessible, ADA-Compliant Playgrounds in Manhattan
Essex, Norfolk, and Houston streets, Lower East Side
Consists of modern play units, animal art, painted line games, a spray shower area, basketball hoops, and new safety surfacing.
Abraham Lincoln Playground
Fifth Avenue and East 135 Street, Harlem
This playground honors the sixteenth president of the United States, Abraham Lincoln. It offers ample open space for neighborhood children to play, and a well-kept basketball court.
Anne Loftus Playground
Fort Tryon Park, Broadway and Dyckman Street, Fort George
Fort Tryon Park’s northern playground includes fitness equipment, a large water feature, restrooms, and a children’s play area. Universally accessible swings.
Asser Levy Playground
East 23rd Street to East 25th Street, FDR Drive, Peter Cooper Village
Asser Levy Playground contains a diverse mix of outdoor recreational opportunities. Neighborhood residents and visitors who visit the park can enjoy the playground, play ping pong, badminton, chess, soccer, football, t-ball, exercise, jog, practice yoga or enjoy some shaded seating.
Augustus St. Gaudens Playground
2 Ave., East 19 Street to East 20 St., Peter Cooper Village
This playground was opened as a jointly operated playground in January 1966 to serve children from P.S. 40. The design of the park pays tribute to Saint-Gaudens through bronze and porcelain decorations that harmonize with the new gates, spray shower, garden area, and play equipment.
Hudson St., Bleecker St. and West 11th Street, West Village
Since its opening, Bleecker Playground has remained a social and recreational meeting place for neighborhood families and children. This park contains animal art and decorative details that reflect the architecture of the Greenwich Village Historical District in which the playground is located.
Captain Jacob Joseph Playground
Rutgers Street and Henry Street, Two Bridges
This playground serves as a lasting memorial to World War II hero, Captain Jacob Joseph, as well as to notable members of the Joseph family who have contributed to the surrounding neighborhood and to the larger New York City community.
West 97th Street and Riverside Drive, Upper West Side
This wheelchair-accessible playground in Riverside Park is home to two fiberglass dinosaurs, as well as swings for toddlers and older children, a spray shower, two sandboxes, and climbing equipment with safety surfacing.
East 110th Street Playground
Central Park, East 110th Street at Lenox Avenue, East Harlem
The East 110th Street Playground has swings, a climbing structure, and a dancing water display you can control with the touch of a button.This playground is wheelchair accessible, and features an accessible surface and a water feature, ramped play structures and adaptive swings.
Riverside Park, West 91 Street & Riverside Drive, Upper West Side
While one of the smaller parks within Riverside Park, Hippo Playground offers a comfort station and park house, swings with safety surfacing, wooden play equipment and slides, green metal play equipment, a spray shower, picnic tables, benches, sand pit, and a drinking fountain
Jacob H. Schiff Playground
Amsterdam Ave. between West 136 Street and West 138 Street, Harlem
Jacob H. Schiff Playground is one of the larger playgrounds in Manhattan. It offers a variety of children's athletic activities. The centerpiece of the park is a large synthetic turf field lined for soccer and available for many uses. Jacob H. Schiff Playground also features six handball courts, three basketball courts, play areas for children and tots, and a peaceful tree-lined lawn area.
Little Flower Playground
Madison Street between Clinton Street and Rutgers Street, Two Bridges
Little Flower Playground is very popular with children and their families, and includes swingsets, climbing structures, picnic areas, basketball courts, a large flower mosaic, and a handball court.
Marx Brothers Playground
2nd Avenue, East 96th Street to East 97th Street, Upper East Side
This playground features an installation of a synthetic turf surface, animal art, and new landscaping.
Matthew P. Sapolin Playground
West 70th Street between West End Avenue and Amsterdam Avenue, Upper West Side
Sapolin Playground is for children of all abilities. It features a children's garden with accessible bridges running across it, musical instruments built into the play space, and basketball courts with adjustable basketball backstops that can be lowered for athletes in wheelchairs. The comfort station and picnic tables also allow disabled access.
Monsignor Kett Playground
West 204 Street between 10th Avenue and Nagle Avenue, Inwood
Monsignor Kett Playground features a park house, which doubles as a comfort station, an animal play sculpture of a seal, and a piece of Inwood white rock marble excavated from Inwood Park as a symbol of the area’s geological past, as well as benches, drinking fountains, fences, two swing sets, and colorful modular play equipment.
Pier 25 Playground
227 West Street, Manhattan, Tribeca
This wheelchair accessible playground is one of the most popular areas in Hudson River Park. Filled with activities for children including swings, climbing structures, water features and more, this oasis in Tribeca is a haven for children who need a safe place to play.
Robert Bendheim Playground
Central Park, East Side at 100th Street, Harlem East
Built for all children, Robert Bendheim Playground is ADA accessible, and features a large play structure, tunnels, slides, sound-generating play components, wheelchair-accessible ramps, a sandbox with raised sand tables, water feature, and bucket swings.
Samuel N. Bennerson 2nd Playground
West 64th Street, between Amsterdam Avenue and West End Avenue, Upper West Side
This playground is a haven for active youngsters and people of all ages. The playground features fully accessible play equipment for children of all ages and abilities. The playground also features two basketball courts, including one full-sized court, as well as an area for adult fitness.
Union Square Park
Broadway to 4th Avenue., East 14th Street to East 17th Street, Union Square
This park is fun for kids of all sizes, and has universally accessible swings, complete with an adaptive swing.
Thompson Street between Spring Street and Prince Street, Soho
This is a Level 1 Playground for All Children. However, there is no adaptive swing seat. Playgrounds for All Children are designed to provide recreational opportunities for children of all ages and abilities. Playground features include ramped play equipment, ground level play features, accessible swings, wheelchair-accessible tables, and drinking fountains.
West 110th Street Playground
Central Park, West Side at 110th Street, South Harlem
At the northwest end of Central Park, the West 110th Street Playground is surrounded by greenery and dramatic rock outcrops. This park features an accessible surface, water feature, and transfer to sand area, as well as adaptive swings. Children can play in a sandbox, embankment slide, modern climbers and spinners, water feature, and tire and bucket swings.
Accessible, ADA-Compliant Playgrounds in Brooklyn
Bedford Avenue between South 9th Street and Division Avenue, Williamsburg
Bedford Playground offers a welcome place for rest and relaxation for people of all ages, and features animal art, and basketball and handball courts.
10th Avenue, New Utrecht Avenue between 43rd Street and 42nd Street, Borough Park
This playground serves both as a place of rest and recreation for people of all ages, and a memorial to a dedicated community leader, Nicholas A. Brizzi. This park features play equipment and an array of play elements including several slides and hopscotch climbers.
Chester Street to Bristol Street between Sutter Avenue and Pitkin Avenue, Brownsville
This playground offers basketball and handball courts, a painted baseball diamond, shower basin, tot and regular swings, and colorful play equipment.
De Hostos Playground
Harrison Avenue between Walton Street and Lorimer Street, Broadway Triangle
De Hostos Playground features benches, a comfort station, basketball courts, a flagpole with a yardarm, handball courts, and London planetrees.
Dean Street to Bergen Street between 6th Avenue and Carlton Avenue, Prospect Heights
This playground includes a comfort station, slides and swings, seesaws, a sandbox, a flagpole, and an asphalt ballfield. There is also a synthetic field and a basketball court.
Elizabeth Stroud Playground
Stuyvesant Avenue and Fulton Street, Stuyvesant Heights
This park includes play equipment with safety surfacing, benches, swings, and stately London planetrees.
Greene Avenue between Waverly Avenue and Washington Avenue, Clinton Hill
This playground features play units for toddlers and pre-teens, safety surfacing, fencing, lighting, shade trees, upgraded game tables and animal art.
Fort Hamilton Parkway Prospect Avenue, Greenwood Avenue, Windsor Terrace
This playground, featuring modular play equipment, basketball courts and softball fields.
Prospect Park, Ocean Avenue & East Lake Drive, Prospect Lefferts Gardens
This playground that encourages inventive play with fixtures like a bronze dragon statue that spews water instead of fire, a sculpture of a boy reading while reaching down to pet his dog, cutout animal masks that kids can set their faces in, and a stage with multiple platforms of different heights for little ones to play on.
Avenue L between East 17th Street and East 18th Street, Midwood
Kolbert Playground, in Brooklyn's Midwood neighborhood, is a playground that offers a large playground for neighborhood children to enjoy. This playground, named for a fallen World War II hero, also features two full basketball courts, handball courts, a synthetic turf field and walking track, and fitness equipment for adults.
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Lion’s Pride Playground
Riverdale Avenue between Van Sinderen Avenue and Snediker Avenue, New Lots
Lion’s Pride Playground has a lion theme, wth yellow play equipment that evokes the lion’s golden mane while a lion water basin adds to the atmosphere. There is also a drinking fountain, tot swings, spray showers, benches, and a yardarm flagpole that makes Lion’s Pride Playground a welcome recreational oasis in the midst of a busy neighborhood.
Park Slope Playground
Berkeley Place and Lincoln Place between Fifth Avenue and Sixth Avenue, Park Slope
This playground, adjacent to Park Slope School 282, is a popular and active community destination. People love the variety of play spaces for both younger and older kids and the summer sprinklers and water features.
Accessible, ADA-Compliant Playgrounds in Queens
Bay Terrace Playground
23rd Avenue between 212th Street and Bell Boulevard, Bayside
Bay Terrace Playground contains two handball courts, a basketball court, a concrete porpoise sculpture, a spray shower, a comfort station, benches and game tables, swings, two play units, and a flagpole with a yardarm.
Beach 30th Street Playground
Boardwalk between Beach 29th and Beach 30th Streets, Rockaway Beach
This accessible playground is just steps from the ocean. The playground's equipment has a nautical theme, with a climbable ship and lots of water play. It has universally accessible swings as well as an adaptive swing. It is ideal for climbers as it has ropes that are pretty low to the ground making it accessible for all.
Dutch Kills Playground
28th Street, Crescent Street between 37th Avenue and 36th Avenue, Dutch Kills
This playground features swings and climbable play equipment, including several slides, and a flower-shaped spray shower active on hot days. Teens and adults can enjoy the handball and half-court basketball courts, as well as the roller hockey rink and outdoor fitness equipment, as well as the picnic-style seating area.
Grassmere Terrace, Brookhaven Avenue, Briar Place, Far Rockaway
This playground features two play areas (for kids aged 2 to 5, and 5 to 12), a 100-meter track and junior soccer field, an educational wooded trail, an outdoor classroom, a junior basketball court, adult fitness equipment, and a children’s water play area.
Grover Cleveland Playground
Stanhope Street between Fairview Avenue and Grandview Avenue, Ridgewood
Grover Cleveland Playground has something to offer for Ridgewood residents and New Yorkers of all ages. The park behind Grover Cleveland High School offers tall play equipment, swings, and a spray shower shaped like a waterfall for kids. For older kids and adults, the park has basketball, handball, volleyball, and a synthetic field that can be used for soccer or baseball/softball.
Flushing Meadows Corona Park, W/S of Meadow Lake and GC Parkway, Forest Hills
Jurassic Playground features swings for tots and kids, a drinking fountain, benches, a flagpole with a yardarm, play equipment with safety surfacing, and Apatosaurus animal art. There are also images of dinosaurs, including the Stegosaurus, Triceratops, Ankylosaurus, and Dromaeosaurus, throughout the playground.
Brookville Boulevard between 136th Avenue, 137th Avenue, Jamaica
This playground features swings, a spray shower, and a precast Doric column. The spray shower is a cast-concrete lion. There is bronze, north-arrow rosette paving the path leading to the spray shower as well as a series of stainless steel Roman numerals. The steel play equipment is adorned with a Roman thematic plaque inscribed with SPQR (the Senate and People of Rome). The park also contains a thematic plaque at the entrance with the mythical founders of Rome, Romulus and Remus, and their mother, a wolf.
Locust Manor Playground
121st Avenue between Lucas Street and 192nd Street, St. Albans
This playground serves the students at the adjoining P.S. 15 and the residents of Springfield Gardens. Named after the nearby Long Island Rail Road station, the site features a full basketball court and two handball courts, a children’s play area with play equipment, a spray shower and a comfort station, swings and checker tables.
Springfield Boulevard between 53rd Avenue and 56th Avenue, Oakland Gardens
This playground is home to four sets of play equipment and two swing sets, all with safety surfacing. There are benches and a flagpole with a yardarm. The park’s attractive cement art inlaid into the ground includes a compass and a butterfly-shaped spray shower. There are also basketball courts, handball courts, and a drinking fountain.
Playground For All Children
Flushing Meadows Corona Park, 111th Street and Saultell & 56th Avenues, Corona
This is a Level 1–Playground for All Children that serves children with and without disabilities. Available to the public and to school and community groups, the playground offers a variety of recreational and instructional activities. This playground was designed to accommodate children using crutches, canes, walkers, or wheelchairs, and to provide many opportunities for social, cognitive, sensory and motor activity.
“Uncle” Vito E. Maranzano Glendale Playground
Central Avenue between 70th Street and 71st Street, Glendale
This playground that features play structures, handball courts, concrete perimeter sidewalks and stairs, basketball backstops, benches, fences, drinking fountains. The playground’s decorative theme was inspired by the sea, with whale, dolphin, and fish figures mounted on a wall, a concrete whale play animal, whales and wave patterns of colored concrete, and a shower that sprays water from whale blowholes.
Accessible, ADA-Compliant Playgrounds on Long Island
Andrew J. Parise Park
200 Cedarhurst Avenue, Cedarhurst
The playground at Andrew J. Parise Park has an accessible sprinkler area. There are ramps onto the play structures, ground-level play features, a small rock climber, and interactive play features throughout. There is no barrier to the entrance of the sprinkler area so it is very wheelchair friendly.
198 First Avenue, East Rockaway
This park was completely renovated in 2014 after Superstorm Sandy. Dedicated to six-year-old Sandy Hook school shooting victim Noah Pozner, this playground features multiple play structures, including one that has wheelchair accessible ramps, and a spray park. There are no lips or barriers to get into the spray park, making it easier for those in wheelchairs or with limited mobility to escape the summer heat.
Let All The Children Play Accessible Playground
Eisenhower Park, East Meadow
The Let All The Children Play (LATCP) accessible playground is located at Field 4. This playground features swings, slides, climbing areas, sandboxes and activity stations. Wide ramps and pathways offer full accessibility and mobility. There’s a merry-go-round that accommodates wheelchairs; a bridge structure kids can climb, walk or wheel across; adaptive swings, multiple climbing structures; and ground-level play features perfect for toddlers. There are also plenty of benches with clear views of the play area, and trees provide a good amount of shade on hot summer days.
Eisenhower Park Playground
Eisenhower Park, East Meadow
Eisenhower Park’s second inclusive playground can be found at Field 8 near the entrance at Stewart and Merrick avenues. Completed in 2016, it is part of an accessible sports field built so children of all abilities can participate in sports side by side. The playground has a large climbing structure with ramps and wide pathways, as well as wobbling lily pads, chin-up bars, and a spiral ladder. There are full-support swings, toddler and big-kid swings.
Haypath Inclusive Playground
23 Oxford Road, Old Bethpage
The playground at Haypath Park features sensory-based equipment. The equipment is positioned low enough to be accessible to those in wheelchairs, and the Fibar surface of the play area cushions impact but is stable enough for those with limited mobility.
3800 Mahlon Brower Drive, Oceanside
The only set of wheelchair-accessible swings on Long Island can be found at Oceanside Park. Unlike adaptive swings, these two swings allow the user to stay in the wheelchair. Ramps lock the wheelchair into place and the rider can engage a pull chain to propel the swing. The playground was also updated with a soft safety surface and new fencing.
Hermann Griem Park
Brown Boulevard, Wheatley Heights
Ramps make much of the play structure accessible by wheelchair. Tic-tac-toe, steering wheels and other interactive features on the playground are featured and are accessible for kids of most heights. Picnic areas, a ball field, tennis courts, and restrooms are also at the park.
Lake Ronkonkoma County Park
Lake Shore Road, Lake Ronkonkoma
There are two playgrounds in this park; one for preschoolers, and one for school-age kids. Both structures are handicapped-accessible with ramps large enough for a wheelchair. The park also features baseball, handball, basketball, two handicapped-accessible playground, a picnic area and freshwater fishing
49 Smith Street, Patchogue
This accessible playground includes a play structure that features double-wide ramps, interactive games, wheels to turn, slides, and bars that allow kids to pull themselves up onto the equipment. There are also two adaptive swings and a large play structure for older kids in a pirate-ship theme.
Sunken Meadow State Park
Route 25A and Sunken Meadow State Parkway, Kings Park
There are multiple playgrounds throughout the park, but the handicap accessible structure is located near parking field 1. Wide ramps allow access to interactive features along the play structure. The bathrooms are located in the large building to the left of the playground, which also leads to a wheelchair-accessible boardwalk.
Kerrigan Road, Copiague
Tanner Park’s spray park features mushroom structures and a large tree with cascading water. The spray area has no borders, making it accessible for those in a wheelchair or with limited mobility. The playground is also wheelchair accessible, with ramps along the play structure.
Veterans Park Playground
Bellerose Avenue. East Northport
The Boundless Playground at Veterans Park was designed using Americans With Disabilities Act standards for accessibility. The facility features ground-level play, adaptive swings, and ramped play structures that allow kids to run or wheel through during a game of chase or tag, for example. There is also a large play structure with a rock climbing wall, twisting ladders, monkey bars, and plenty of slides.
Accessible, ADA-Compliant Playgrounds in Westchester County
David G. Osterer Center on King St in Rye Brook, Westchester
Cerebral Palsy of Westchester (CPW) opened Harmony Park, an adaptive playground and sensory garden to benefit both children and adults with autism, cerebral palsy, and other disabilities. The facility represents the first-of-its-kind in the region, offering innovative, wheelchair-accessible equipment and sensory activities, so individuals with mobility issues can swing, play, experience nature, and practice critical skills. The park enables CPW participants to play as typical children do, improving health and functioning, reducing stress, and granting them and their families a new sense of well-being. The playground includes a wheelchair-accessible merry-go-round and glider, waterplay table, Pulse Tempo interactive music and sensory game installation, xylophone, giant bongos, umbrella pavilion area, outdoor musical and raised planter beds with colorful flowers, aromatic herbs and plants that sway or whistle — all designed to encourage physical activity, stimulate the senses, and promote imaginative, interactive play that helps children build social and problem-solving skills, as well as frustration tolerance.
Accessible, ADA-Compliant Playgrounds in Rockland County
Lowland Hill Road, Stony Point, Rockland
Casey sisters, Amanda and Kelly, founded Project, with the help of friends and family, donated a wheelchair-accessible swing to Lowland Park in an effort to provide equipment to children with disabilities.
Accessible, ADA-Compliant Playgrounds in Bergen County, NJ
Van Saun County Park
216 Forest Ave, Paramus, Bergen County, NJ
Van Saun County Park is one of the largest playgrounds in the area with 4 different structures and multiple-age play areas. The park features an inclusive playground with handicap accessibility, as well as ramps, bridges, tunnels, slides. The playground includes play equipment, a sprinkler, and picnic areas.
1097-1235 Palisade Ave, Teaneck, Bergen County, NJ
This fenced-in, colorful playground is 100% wheelchair accessible.The main play structure geared for children 5-12 years includes 7 different slides, a variety of climbing events, balancing floating stones and log roll, upper body challenges, wheelchair ramps, transfer stations and an assortment of play panels to stimulate imaginative play. For 2-5 years, ground level play panels, spring animals, climbing animals, a fire truck and balance beams are available for imaginative and stimulating play. Colorful accessible, tot, and belt swings are placed on the perimeter of the playground. The park also includes a ground swimming pool, children’s wading pool, amphitheater, soccer fields, baseball fields, tennis courts, 2 paved walking paths.