Ask nearly every child in North Texas under the age of 10 what their favorite part of NorthPark Center is and they will tell you the “NorthPark slides.” If you aren’t from this area, you might think they were referring to an elaborate playground, but that’s not the case!
For nearly 50 years, children have enjoyed running up and sliding down the iconic, mid-century planters located in front of Neiman Marcus entrance. The four planters are part of the original architecture of the shopping center, and are a cherished design feature appreciated by both architects and little action seekers.
“Every child who has grown up in Dallas has, on their own accord, discovered the NorthPark planters,” says Billy Hines, manager of NorthPark Center.
While the most popular of all the planters to slide up and down is the large one (not surprisingly), there are three others in varying sizes. One of the medium-sized planters is located in the gazing pond and includes a cascading water feature that adds a subtle relaxing quality to the space. While little boys and girls don’t have the opportunity to climb on that one for obvious reasons, it’s fun to watch the little baby turtles and ducks bobbing all around it, in discovery of their own.
The planters were never intended to be slides, of course, and were meticulously designed by Raymond and Patsy Nasher to be a signature landscape feature housing beautiful plants and flowers. Today’s landscape décor is a nod to that original aesthetic, and can be seen in those original planters and others around the shopping center.
Every year, millions of NorthPark visitors enjoy coming back time and again to see the foliage and flowers change with the season. And every year, thousands of children discover a carefree slide down the iconic NorthPark planters.