Forest Park Nature Playscape

2018 - 2021

Forest Park Forever

Forest Park, St. Louis, MO

Project Team: 

Interboro Partners (Tobias Armborst, Daniel D'Oca, Georgeen Theodore, Andrew Wald, Katherine Isidro, Andrew Wald, Odili Onochie, Brian Mourato), Rubus Landscape Architecture, David Mason & Associates, Citizen Carpentry, Sarah Tisdale

Interboro led a team of landscape architects, builders, artists, educators, growers, and civic activists to design a new natural playscape in St. Louis’ Forest Park. This project is transforming what was 17 acres of turf into a restored natural environment with nine unique activity areas connected by a network of trails and paths. Here, families and children can escape the city and actively explore, discover, and learn in an accessible, freeform natural environment.

To help design this natural playscape, we enlisted the help of hundreds of young St. Louisans through different outreach methods including a mobile engagement station, collage activity games, hands-on models, full-scale prototypes, and a Youth Advisory Committee.

Through deep observation, broad community engagement, and innovative thinking, we are reimagining what it means to play and learn in a public park. 

After a year-long design process, the Playscape broke ground in 2019 and will officially open to the public on June 2, 2021. See the official announcement (with sneak-peek photos) from Forest Park Forever here.

Plan of the natural playscape

Spring Activity Area

Meadow Activity Area

Mounds Activity Area

Wetland Activity Area

Bottomland Activity Area


Our engagement process creates a feedback loop between the mobile engagement events, us and the YAC. Exciting and creative collage ideas from the MES events are identified and interpreted by us, then presented to the YAC for critique, feedback and suggestions for how to improve. We are currently working on prototyping some of these ideas to be tested on the site before they are refined and incorporated into the final design.