Curbed published an article about the accessibility features of the Sasaki-designed Watertown Riverfront Park and Braille Trail, calling it a “true community site.” Officially opened this summer, the quarter mile stretch of park space along the Charles River is designed for all ages, body types, and abilities.
Sasaki’s designs for the park ensure that everyone can enjoy the riverfront. The wide river walkway accommodates wheelchairs and includes specially-designed braille signage and a cable system to aid navigation for the visually impaired. To enrich the experience of the river, a sensory garden encourages users to appreciate non-visual qualities of the riverfront.
Sasaki landscape architect, Travis Mazerall, ASLA, who led the park’s design, shared his thoughts on designing for accessibility in the article. “Universal design is just part of the design for us, we don’t separate the two,” he explained. “It’s important to, say, have benches for elderly people so they can take breaks. There are always strategies that allow you to go above and beyond the requirements of accessible design."
Read the article in full here, and keep scrolling to see photos of the project.
Angled signage makes reading more comfortable for the visually impaired
Nature signage throughout the park
Hand-crafted marimba-inspired benches can be played as an instrument and boat-shaped benches enliven the Sensory Garden