In 2006 the Urban Systems Foundation, the charitable arm of Urban Systems, was introduced to the Canadian Nation Institute for the Blind (CNIB) through “A Day of Caring” event. What started out as a simple request to paint a fence turned into an opportunity to create Canada’s first Outdoor Classroom designed specifically for children with vision loss.
The Urban Systems Foundation collaborated closely with CNIB and their clients to articulate the vision, develop the concept, raise awareness and funds, prepare the construction drawings and manage
the construction of the Outdoor Classroom. The design team worked hard to create a safe and controlled environment where children with vision loss could explore, build confidence and develop their navigational skills. Contrasting colors, elevation changes, various surface textures and auditory elements were used to reflect real world environments.
The Outdoor Classroom has become an essential teaching tool for the Children and Family Services department at CNIB and has served to advance skills and break down barriers for children with vision loss.
Canadian National Institute for the Blind