TULSA, Oklahoma - Green Country children and their families are front and center in the designs for a new playground inside Tulsa's showcase park, "A Gathering Place."

The Chapman Foundation Adventure Playground is just one element of the now over $400 million dollar Gathering Place project.

A detailed model lays out the plan for what's going to be one of the single largest playgrounds in the country. Project Manager Jeff Stava has given table-top tours of the playground, mainly to donors, but this is the first time it's been seen publicly.

"Most playgrounds are designed for kids 6 to 12. This playground basically has different landscaped rooms for different age groups," Jeff Stava said.

The playground is divided into seven distinct play zones, plus a picnic area. It covers 5 acres, and connects to the larger park around it through elevated stone walkways.

On the model - dowels represent the hundreds of new trees to be planted.

"There will be so many different kinds of experiences that kids and families can come and they could come 10 times over a year and have 10 completely different types of play experiences," Stava said.

"We wanted to create a place where people wanted to be and they wanted to be together as Tulsans and that's what this is going to do for our community."

The water features are together on "water mountain" where kids have to move to keep the water flowing.

"With water mountain, the kids have to use their head and use their body physically to make the water work - it's not passive water play, it's what we call active water play," he said.

Project manager Jeff Stava said the playground is designed to entertain and educate - but mostly - to get people outdoors, together.

The groundbreaking is September 20th - and construction will run through the end of 2017.

Play areas include:

  • Skywalk Forest (ages 5-12): netted climbing structures, treetop forts, slides, a zip line and other climbing structures.
  • Fairyland Forest (ages 2-5): small playhouses linked by wooden boardwalks, swings, pathways and places to climb.
  • Cloverville (infant and toddler): A separate and safe play area for caregivers to play with very young children.
  • River Giants (5-12): basket swings, paddle fish climbing structure, play structure supported by two giant blue herons, celebrating the animals of the Arkansas River.
  • Picnic Grove (all ages): large picnic area for school groups and families.
  • Water Mountain (all ages): a water play area where kids must help make the water flow by being active. Includes a see saw powered spray area, collection bowls, runnels with pools and dams, Archimedes screws, water wheels and a large water and sand play area.