Swinging in the City

Swinging in the City

Committee: Facilities, Parks and Recreation

Total Cost: $120,000

Locations: Parks and Open Spaces


Short Description:

Install six to eight porch swings in public squares and parks around Cambridge for residents of all ages to have fun and enjoy the experience of being a kid again!


Long Description:

The swinging benches would be similar to the ones on the Rose Kennedy Greenway. They are sturdy, can be exposed year-round, and do not require constant maintenance. The swinging benches on the Greenway are used and loved by locals and tourists alike in all seasons and serve as a fun alternative to traditional benches. The estimated cost for replacing 8 of the Greenway’s benches was $95,000 (without the frames, which were already in place), and the swinging benches can either be placed under trees or have overhead shade.

Swings in cities are becoming more popular and can encourage playful behavior in people of all ages, especially adults, and these installations of incidental play can make even the most ordinary urban areas more exciting, whimsical, and bring back a sense of childhood joy. In the city of Charlotte, porch swings have been installed around the city in busy and diverse areas to connect people by promoting conversation between residents from different backgrounds, generations, and walks of life. Montreal has a musical swing installation where each swing triggers different notes and all the swings together compose a piece, but certain sounds only play when there is cooperation. Swings can also be used to activate public spaces by bringing life, play, and promoting spending time outdoors. Depending on where the swings go, they can be used to bring people to underutilized public spaces as well.


Swing in Charlotte, NC

Swing 2

Swings on the Rose Kennedy Greenway


Showing 2 reactions

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  • Beth Radcliffe
    commented 2018-12-01 13:28:07 -0500
    Fun, but design carefully. The black iron benches the City just installed (that look like the NC materials) are rarely usable. Either too hot, wet, or now getting icy.
  • Beth Redmond
    commented 2018-11-26 11:34:02 -0500
    Swings for Cambridge wonderful, and here I am thinking Cambridge has it all already. Let’s go swing it in Cambridge!