U.S. Paralympic Medalist Tatyana McFadden Joins in Celebration of Inclusive Play
Liberty Mutual Insurance and the City of Plano, Texas today announced the unveiling of the city’s new universally accessible playground. Liberty Playground, inclusive for those of all abilities, allows children with and without disabilities to play together in a variety of outdoor experiences.
Officially opened at a ribbon-cutting ceremony held at the new Windhaven Meadows Park, the event was attended by Liberty Mutual Chairman and CEO David Long; Liberty Mutual Foundation President Melissa MacDonnell; Plano Mayor Harry LaRosiliere; 17-time U.S. Paralympic Medalist Tatyana McFadden; representatives of the Plano Parks and Recreation Department, the Plano Independent School District, the Plano City Council and state legislative offices; community partners; Plano residents and Liberty Mutual employees.
“Philanthropy is deeply engrained in who we are both as a company and as individuals, and we’ve been committed to advancing access for people of all abilities since Liberty’s formation over a century ago,” said Long. “In that same spirit, we’re extremely proud to partner with the City of Plano to unveil this inclusive playground, and to change and enrich lives, together.”
A $1 million grant from Liberty Mutual, in addition to $1 million from the City of Plano, funded the development of Liberty Playground, which occupies two acres within the Windhaven Meadows Park.
“We are tremendously pleased to partner with Liberty Mutual to help build a new playground in our city that is universally accessible to people of all abilities,” said LaRosiliere. “I’m proud of our efforts to come together and create an inclusive and safe place for all to enjoy.”
Featuring 40 percent sensory play activities and 60 percent physical play structures, Liberty Playground exceeds ADA requirements and introduces over 20,000 square feet of dedicated accessible play areas that include dozens of pieces of equipment. Additionally, the playground meets the five elements of play – social/emotional, physical, sensory, cognitive and communication – containing a sensory garden with wood play elements, water table and stream with spray features, comprising 1,800 square feet of water play. Older and younger children have their own space to encourage age-appropriate learning, risk taking and motor-skill development. The area is completed with more than 50 new shade trees, as well as areas of lawn, seat walls, benches, café tables and shade structures to provide a variety of options for enjoying the playground.
“It’s a great honor to join Liberty Mutual and the City of Plano in opening such a wonderful place for children of all abilities to come together, be active and be themselves,” said McFadden. “At the root of all sports is this inherent drive to compete and more importantly, to play. Finding my passion as an athlete was a big part of what changed my life. Sports made me healthier, more independent and involved in my community, and I hope this playground can serve as the same source of inspiration for children to realize their potential, create goals for themselves and dream big.”
Liberty Playground is the second universally accessible playground of its kind funded by Liberty Mutual. In November 2014, Liberty Mutual provided the cornerstone donation of $1 million for the creation and construction of the City of Boston’s first universally accessible playground at the Charlestown Navy Yard. The Boston playground project, which is heavily used by schools, community groups and families, includes a 23,000 square foot boardwalk and more than 60 pieces of play equipment within a 15,000 square foot rubber playground area, complete with ADA accessible paths and gathering spaces.
Liberty Playground is part of the new Windhaven Meadows Park (5400 Windhaven Parkway), which also includes a five-acre dog park, spacious pavilion area and ample parking.
Liberty Mutual and its employees have contributed nearly $500 million in the last ten years, including direct grants, to more than 1,200 nonprofits and thousands of additional organizations through the company’s Give with Liberty program to organizations that empower individuals who are experiencing homelessness, advance access for people with disabilities and expand educational opportunities for underserved students.
About Liberty Mutual Insurance
Liberty Mutual’s purpose is to help people embrace today and confidently pursue tomorrow. The promise we make to our customers throughout the world is to provide protection for the unexpected, delivered with care.
In business since 1912, and headquartered in Boston, Mass., today we are the fifth largest global property and casualty insurer based on 2018 gross written premium. We also rank 75th on the Fortune 100 list of largest corporations in the U.S. based on 2018 revenue. As of December 31, 2018, we had $41.6 billion in annual consolidated revenue.
We employ nearly 50,000 people in 30 countries and economies around the world. We offer a wide range of insurance products and services, including personal automobile, homeowners, specialty lines, reinsurance, commercial multiple-peril, workers compensation, commercial automobile, general liability, surety, and commercial property.