La Crosse’s Powell Park to become an ‘inclusive playground’

La Crosse’s parks department is trying to catch up with the times by catering to children of all abilities.

The city’s parks department is planning to convert Powell Park into an “inclusive playground” for kids on the autism spectrum.

Because the park is in a residential neighborhood, the noise and lights can be disruptive to these children.

The park will offer a calming area within the restroom facility. The park will also have new play equipment and a fence.

The parks and recreation director says this is something that should have been done 20 years ago.

“The federal laws are changing, the cultures are changing, we inadvertently left off a whole group of people in our playground programs that we probably should have been thinking about a long time ago,” said Steve Carlyon.

He says only a handful of “inclusive playgrounds” exist in the United States.