New building regulations for playgrounds

Playgrounds covered important changes in legal and normative requirements. While normative changes are a step in ordering a number of issues related to playgrounds children’s play furniture, legal ones should be assessed rather negatively, because there is less and less space for playgrounds.

Playgrounds – new recipes

When planning the construction or modernization of a playground, you should, first of all, get acquainted with building regulations, because the swing, carousel, and even a bench and a dustbin are elements of small architecture. The distance of playgrounds for children,  landscape turf playgrounds for children and youth and recreational places from the lines dividing the street, from the windows of rooms intended for people to stay and from places of waste collection should be at least 10 m, subject to the requirements of § 19 paras. 1 “. This means that, unlike the previous guidelines, each playground (previously only those next to multi-family buildings), playground and recreation area should be planned with appropriate distance.

It seems necessary to meet this requirement because the assembly of the small architecture element requires prior notification to the local architecture department. This is not easy as there is no consistent approach among officials regarding formalities and how to measure these distances.

New building regulations for playgrounds

The ordinance says about the distance from the playground, but it does not specify from which place the measurement should be taken, or what the playground is. At least three variants are possible here:

Measurement for the fence, if it exists. This is a very relative approach, precisely because the installation of the fence is not mandatory. In addition, fences often include not only the playground itself but also e.g., the entire property, including the building. In this situation, the choice of which fence point should be measured is very subjective;

Measurement to the so-called safety zone, i.e., actually a normative collision surface, which, according to PN-EN 1176, should be marked around each play equipment. This approach seems the most appropriate because, for every person who knows the norm, it is obvious that the playground is not only devices but also the surface around them. However, the standard is quite loosely linked to building codes, and this interpretation is rarely used; To be precise, a distance of 10 meters should be kept from the windows of rooms intended for people to stay, i.e., those in which the same people stay for at least 2 hours during the day. So this applies to all rooms in the apartments, but not to bathrooms, staircases, or utility rooms. To determine the distance from the street dividing line, check their route on the map. The measurement itself does not have to be conducted horizontally, because the regulations do not specify it either.

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