Computer-themed playground in Ruoholahti

The renovation of the Ruoholahti playground from the early 1990s will begin in autumn 2023. The playground will be transformed into the world’s first known computer-themed playground. Children can get acquainted with the world of computers and programming in the refurbished park while playing.
Ruoholahden leikkipuiston pääleikkiväline.

Playground Ruoholahti is located on the southern shore of the Ruoholahti canal and is part of the Ruoholahdenpuisto park. The park is currently in active use, but it needs renovation. Designed in 1994 by Lars Liljefors, the playground area is approximately 0.75 hectares.

The renovation aims to create a unique, play-inspiring playground with a computer theme. The playground activities and equipment will be modernised. The site is primarily intended for children from daycare age to 6th-graders. Older visitors have also been considered in the design.

The highlight of the playground will be the computer-themed special playground equipment designed and implemented based on ideas by the author and illustrator Linda Liukas. Standard playground equipment, park furniture and surface materials will also be linked to the theme through the colour scheme, design language and signs used.

Playground for all ages

The main playground equipment is a two-piece play tower representing a computer processor. The multifunctional tower for older children includes climbing and sliding activities. A carousel and swings will be placed near the play tower.

The park’s southern play area is suitable for all ages. It includes balancing boards, in-ground trampolines, a keyboard auditorium and a platform shaped like a phone screen. For infants and toddlers, there are computer-themed spring rockers, a sandbox shaped like a game controller, a playhouse and a climbing apparatus.

The vegetation around the park will mainly be preserved. The shrub plantings will be renewed. New plantings will increase the diversity of plant species. New trees will be planted to provide more shade to the playground area. The park will have an educational planting area and information boards with a biodiversity and pollinator theme. The fences and lighting will also be renovated.

Working as a pilot for other themed playgrounds in the future

The computer-themed playground has been designed under the City of Helsinki’s supervision by Näkymä Landscape Architects in cooperation with Linda Liukas. The goal is to create a playground as a learning environment that instructors and teachers visiting the park can utilise.

The Ruoholahti playground will be the first of the themed playgrounds envisioned by the City of Helsinki to attract visitors from a wider area than usual. This is a pilot project – the City of Helsinki plans to create more themed playgrounds.

The Urban Environment Committee approved the park plan in January 2023. Construction is scheduled to begin in autumn 2023 and be completed in autumn 2024.