What is the flagship? Where are the flaws?

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to: Christian Klueng

split, rip

There is a need to work on three stadiums in the city: one of them is Unterm Haane in Belecke. © Klueng, Christian

Basically, the playgrounds in the Warsteiner city district are of “good quality”. However, there is a need for action. Which stadium is the best and what are the problems of classification and vandalism.

Warstein – They discussed a lot, looked a lot and tried a lot for themselves: After a “few months of work”, Kirsten Westermann and Andreas Bling of Warstein’s Youth Welfare Office submitted their “Playground Requirements Outline 2022-2027” to the Youth Welfare Committee. Conclusion: “We are in a good position,” says Blingi, but despite the “good quality,” there is of course a need for work and many ideas to improve the 122,864 square meters play areas for over 4,000 children and youth currently. And so on to maintain its attractiveness in the future. And not only for them, but also for older users, for example.

Another problem: Mühlengelände-Ostwaldpark insichtigvor.
Another problem: Mühlengelände-Ostwaldpark insichtigvor. © Klueng, Christian

In the first step, the subcommittee identified the problem – in addition to city employees Kristen Westermann and Andreas Bling, it also included Dagmar Hanses (WAL/Greens), Heik Kreuz (SPD, chair of the Youth Welfare Committee), Vera Liniger (SPD) and Christian Lenze (CDU) and Elisabeth Liß (BG) – the so-called social spaces in the city area, a total of six. “Similar offers should take place there”, is the premise that aims for performances and quality standards. The Subcommittee decided that these include “the provision of age-appropriate, stimulating, and multifunctional play, sports and exercise opportunities to children and young people who are as close to home as possible” – that “regardless of age, gender, origin and individual possibilities” .. On the other hand, they should also Including “modern sports such as skiing, dirt biking and climbing” in the playroom design, on the other hand, “meeting points” for groups or like-minded people “away from organized structures and commitments” should be possible in each of the six social halls, I decided The Subcommittee stated that the stadium “must be designed to be an inclusive and intergenerational meeting place” in the future. “We also want to empower people with disabilities to participate,” Andreas Bling said, explaining the background.

How does a hammock wheelchair work

The goal is clear, but the way to achieve it requires “intense discussion”. How does a swing wheelchair work? What ground cover is required for wheelchair users? What about sensory impairments? How should plants and soil be designed so that there are sufficient contrasts? “We tested it ourselves from a different point of view,” Kirsten Westermann provided insight into several courses that, for example, special glasses made you “semi-blind.” Playgrounds should also become “places where different age groups and generations meet,” i.e. young and old can meet. “We have learned that older people do not benefit from performances when children are present,” Andreas Bling told the committee. The simple explanation: “They are shy,” so spatial separation is also necessary for the different target (game) groups for a “carefree experience.”

Another problem: the stadium at Rangestrasse in Warstein.
Another problem: the stadium at Rangestrasse in Warstein. © Klueng, Christian

The idea to design a themed playground in every social room was also born. “The theme should match Warstein and, if possible, relevant social space,” is the request. Stones, water, or forests can be developmental methods. As for the “city picture,” the playgrounds with a tourist magnetism, which are dominated by outsiders, are also worth striving for: “The Bilsteintal Jungle Playground is really a calling card of Warstein,” according to the commission. For example, the stadium at Belecke in Eichenweg was very important as a “forest playground”. There at Hamecke it “makes sense to increase its appeal again and to emphasize the forest as a themed playground”. Playground equipment providers should be included in the planning as well as local residents. Warstein has the potential to develop, especially in the area of ​​​​”semi-natural play areas”, forests, trees or running water can be incorporated into the design of the play areas. Around €45,000 is planned in the 2022 budget for new and alternative purchases, and this approach is still necessary each year to “maintain and make the playing areas attractive”.

The Wildlife Park's Jungle Playground, operated by the Nature Park, is described as fictitious in planning the play area requirements.  The management proposes to create new attractions with themed playgrounds.
The Wildlife Park’s Jungle Playground, operated by the Nature Park, is described as fictitious in planning the play area requirements. The management proposes to create new attractions with themed playgrounds. © Klueng, Christian

A total of 57 play areas (stadiums, football fields, skate parks, school yards) were analyzed for needs planning and assessment using a points system. The positive result was “In the Warstein metropolitan area, none of the play areas are in dire need of renovation”. The rating was “good” (green) 28 times, “satisfactory” (yellow) 24 times, and “adequate” (orange) five times. The stadiums of Unterm Haane in Belecke, Kirchweg II (school/youth room) in Niederbergheim, Mühlengelände-Ostwaldpark insichtigvor, Lönsstraße in Suttrop and Rangestraße/Rangewiese in Warstein have “some quality defects”. According to the result, these are “still operable”, given their current “improvement potential”, and should “be given priority in future planning.


Marcus Schaefer, the high school principal, noted that “stadiums quickly become an attraction for young people as a place of residence, and then are misappropriated,” and asked for a “list of prevention measures” to prevent “vandalism, etc.” . Joseph Pepper, the head of Citizen Services, explained some time ago that the police and the Public Order Office were showing a “hot spot presence” on joint patrols. However, this is not a panacea. Some actions have already begun as a result. “Deliberate vandalism in stadiums is not a major cost factor,” Youth Welfare Director Jörg Leoy reports. Even when choosing playground equipment, you pay attention to how well it is protected from vandalism – which is why “a few of them have already fallen off”. If there are reports of ‘other use’ you have to ‘talk’ to young people in order to ‘catch up again’: ‘They also need their own space.’ The mission is “to create a space for all young people where they feel comfortable”.

Pitch Controls

DIN EN 1176-7/1177 regulates “Safety requirements” for playground equipment as well as inspection and maintenance. Based on this, the City of Warstein has developed its own guidelines for stadiums, sports fields, and football fields. After that, visual inspections are done once a week. Functional checks are performed monthly. Public inspections, including ground inspections, are conducted on an annual basis. Important: You must not modify the basic structure of play equipment without permission so as not to violate any warranty claims made by the manufacturer. The municipal warehouse is responsible for regular checks and repairs.

By the way, there are QR codes on information signs in stadiums, which you can use to send information about damage directly to the city administration using a smartphone, for example.

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