Toa Payoh's Dragon Playground
The dragon playground was a popular design for playgrounds in our housing estate in the 1980s.
Part of a series of animal-themed playground, it was inspired by the looks of the oriental dragon, and designed by former Housing Development Board (HDB) interior designer Mr. Khor Ean Ghee.
The dragon playground stands on top of a sand pit. Children can go up the dragon’s tail, walk along its long body of multicoloured steel rings, and go down a concrete slide from its head.
This design was subsequently phased out from 1993 onwards due to safety concerns, and was replaced with modular plastic playgrounds with rubber mats, similar to those found in other developed countries.
Four such dragon playgrounds remain in Singapore today. The Toa Payoh dragon playground built in 1979 is the only one left in a sand pit. Its counterparts in Ang Mo Kio and two smaller playgrounds with dragon designs in Braddell and MacPherson have padded ground.
The dragon playground at Toa Payoh Lorong 6 is so iconic, it was picked by New York culture blog, Flavorwire.com (@flavorwire), as one of 15 amazing playgrounds from all over the world.
Today, playgrounds are still built at the heart of our housing estates as common spaces for everyone.
Do you remember running along the backs of dragons growing up? 🐉
#ThrowbackThursday #ThrowbackThursdaySG #dragonplayground #playground #nostalgia