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Wychwood Barns

Updated: Jul 12, 2019

Surface: sand.

This playground isn’t exactly disappointing – after all, if you’re going to the Wychwood Barns, you’re probably not going expecting a playground – but it feels like a bit of an afterthought.

The Artscape barns are a worthwhile family destination in themselves. Built out of the shell of the TTC’s old streetcar sheds, the Wychwood Barns feature live-work spaces for artists, theatre space, farmer’s markets, and just about anything else that makes young hipster parents feel like they’re raising their kids to be cultured and grass roots-y.

Two things in particular make this playground a let-down for me. First, the overabundance of sand. I’m all for sandboxes, but when an entire playground is covered in the stuff, your kids will be covered in it as well. Add to that the water element in the Wychwood sandbox, and chances are good that you’re bringing home a kid with mud in his underpants.

But the bigger let-down here is that the playground’s setting right next to a piece of TTC streetcar history provides an opportunity for something really cool. This could have been a streetcar-themed playground, in the same vein as the airplane-themed playground up at Downsview, or the musical theme at the Sharon, Lois & Bram playground at Davisville.

Oh well. You can’t win them all.

I’m deciding that I will blame this playground’s failures on a lack of funding. And, for no particular reason, I’m also going to blame the TTC’s Presto card system, just because I hate it.

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