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2018 Sees Spread of Splash Pads
Increase of Over 30% Since 2017

2018 Sees Spread of Splash Pads

The first contemporary immersive fountain in the U.S. was built in 1986 in Dallas, and these water playgrounds have only become more popular in recent years.

According to the recently released 2018 edition of the City Parks Facts report provided by the Trust for Public Land, splash pads - also known as water playgrounds or, more historically, immersive fountains - have become increasingly more widespread in the last year across the United States. The report attributes the growing number to boiling summers that leave some playgrounds too hot to use when school is out.

Since 2017, the number of splash pads in the country has grown by 35 percent. There are currently 1,797 splash pads located across the United States.

The data reveals that Louisville, Kent., Cleveland, Boston, NYC and Chicago are the cities with the most splash pads per capita. These 5 cities boast an average of 230 splash pads between them, while the average for most other cities is 2.

The report insinuates that, if this rate of growth persists, splash pads may replace city pools in some areas. This may be due to the fact that children and adults who cannot swim well can completely engage in the activities of a splash pad, while they would be unable to take full advantage of a traditional pool setting.

The City Parks Facts report also measures other aspects of park growth in U.S. cities, such as the growth of dog parks and sports fields and courts.

To read the full report, visit

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February 17, 2020, 1:42 pm PDT

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