Kadena Air Base improves playgrounds in family housing areas Published Dec. 10, 2008 By 18th Wing Public Affairs KADENA AB, Japan -- A new project is underway in Kadena Air Base family housing areas to replace deteriorating playgrounds with newer facilities. "The civil engineers have taken a proactive interest in improving the playgrounds on base," said Jeff Noorda, 718th Civil Engineer Squadron chief of base development. "Currently, they have an aggressive maintenance program to repair any base playgrounds that do not meet standards or are in disrepair." Many of the military family housing playgrounds have been upgraded during the last five years, but funding has not been available to replace all of them. The government of Japan supports a program that will provide new conveniently located playgrounds as new housing areas are developed. "The Japanese are also funding renovation projects in existing housing areas that include new smaller playgrounds as part of those projects," said Mr. Noorda. "Along with the completion of housing renovations, new playgrounds, pavilions, basketball courts and grassy areas will be installed." Five new playgrounds are currently slated for construction in the Terrace Heights, Kadena Heights and Marek Park areas. Additionally, in fiscal years 2010 and 2011, eight additional playgrounds will be built in the Courtney, O'Donnell Gardens, Sebille Manor and Chibana housing areas. There are 24 more playgrounds identified for upgrade or replacement as part of the program the civil engineering squadron manages. In addition to playgrounds in housing areas, children are able to visit the playgrounds conveniently located on the installation's school grounds, which are available after school hours.