04 October, 2010

Kid-Friendly Design

Where I live in Miami Beach there is a place called Lincoln Road. It is basically a pedestrian-only street filled with boutiques, outdoor cafes, restaurants, and theaters. It is teeming with both tourists and locals from early in the morning until late at night. It is a great place to walk the dog and window shop at the same time. (The store owners even put out dog dishes filled with water for the thirsty pooches) Well, Lincoln Road just got even better. (For my kids anyway) 

Landscape architect Raymond Jungles and Beijing "Bird Nest" stadium architect Herzog and de Meuron recently completed a renovation of the western block of Lincoln Road. The best part? Several serene water gardens filled with fish. The ponds are at kid-level so that little ones can get a good look at the colorful fish as they swim by. (Or follow them around and around the rim of the pool)

Artist Dan Grahame's walk-in sculpture is my kids' very favorite, though. Walk inside of the minimalist curvy glass structure and it's a fun house, silly mirrors included. Completely oblivious to the fact that everyone walking by is an audience to their silliness and funny faces, children (and I have seen adults in here too) can't get enough it. After all, design is at its best when it is both visually beautiful and kid-friendly.

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