Park Stories

Paul Habans Charter Green Schoolyard

The Trust for Public Land
Last Modified : June 15, 2018 at 02:03 PM

Project Partners :

The Trust for Public Land worked with the Recovery School District of Louisiana, the Orleans Parish School Board, Crescent City Schools Charter, Spackman, Mossop & Michaels landscape design firm, Mullin Landscaping, and Earthscape play equipment.

Project Partners Website: What started this project?

After Hurricane Katrina, a master facilities plan was created to demolish, renovate, and create new schools. The New Orleans office of The Trust for Public Land began conversations with the Recovery School District to see what sites would be right for a green schoolyard. Many locations were considered: Habans schoolyard was situated in an area with repeated street flooding and low park access which led to the site selection.

Project Tagline:

The Habans Charter School Green Schoolyard is the first Green Schoolyard built in New Orleans. It includes play equipment constructed by Earthscape and extensive rain gardens. The schoolyard will be the first schoolyard in New Orleans to meet the City's Comprehensive Zoning Ordinance Stormwater Management requirement of capturing the first inch and a quarter. The Trust for Public Land partnered with both the charter management organization, Crescent City Schools and the Recovery School District, on this project.


The Paul Habans Green Schoolyard provides a much needed place for schoolkids and the community to enjoy recreation and greenspace. Innovative play equipment is paired with highly engineered rain gardens that alleviate the repetitive standing water after heavy rains the schoolyard suffered before the project. Students’ ideas were solicited from the get-go during the 6 week participatory design process in the classrooms which also emphasized the importance of managing stormwater.


3501 Seine St, New Orleans, LA, 70114, USA


The Habans schoolyard was envisioned as a creative and inspiring green space that matched well designed and unique play equipment with beautiful, native plantings in engineered rain gardens. It is a space that is functional and enjoyable. The schoolyard provides relief in an area that is an urban heat island without many parks, open to the community outside of school hours.


The Trust for Public Land raised the funds privately to create this schoolyard. TPL worked with all necessary partners and agencies to get approval for this project and selected the design and construction firm. The design firm worked closely with TPL in the classroom during the early design process with the kids. The schoolyard remains property of the school board.


At the end of the project, the school got a state of the art schoolyard and the community got an accessible and safe place to enjoy as well as improvements in stormwater management and heat island reduction.

Related Topics:

Playgrounds The Trust For Public Land Green Infrastructure Urban Resilience 10-minute walk Urban Heat Island Effect Community Engagement Design Process

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