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10 Modern NYC Playgrounds Made for Design Lovers (and Kids)

Playgrounds just aren't like they used to be. The inauguration for New York's first playground, Seward Park on the Lower East Side, was nothing short of apocalyptic. Twenty thousand children held Manhattan's first playscape hostage, Jacob Riis had to go home early, and two hundred police officers were brought to their knees. 700 playgrounds later, each decade has gifted New York with a wildly different philosophy towards play. Of course, the aughts are no different. With acclaimed architect David Rockwell as its standard-bearer, we've ushered in an entirely new age of play. Long gone are concrete flooring and mile-high fences. Culled from the last 15 years, we've assembled 10 of the best pint-sized play spaces in New York City sure to please design-loving parents—oh and their kids, too. So, please, judge away.

Soundscapes, cascading water jets, and more ahead >>