By Melissa Newton, CBS 11 News


ARLINGTON (CBSDFW.COM) – A special playground for some very special kids was dedicated Saturday in Arlington.

The playground at Randol Mill Park features equipment designed specifically for children with special needs.

Brooklyn Gibson, 2, finally has a playground where she can do all the same things that other kids can. The little girl was born with spina bifida and is paralyzed from the waist down.

“Today she went down the slide for the first time by herself, said her mother Brittany Gibson. “It was exciting.”

It isn’t just the playground; it’s the improvements being made to Randol Mill Park that Gibson said are so inviting.

“We’re investing in improvements,” said Paul Polizzotto, President/Founder of EcoMedia, a subsidiary of CBS. “Improvements that will make the park 30 percent more energy efficient, 20 percent more efficient on water, saving the city of Arlington money.”

The day’s dedication marked the beginning of a partnership that promises to make the city more environmentally friendly, Polizzotto said.

EcoMedia is partnering with the City of Arlington, the Texas Rangers Baseball Foundation and Chevrolet to make Randol Mill a greener park.

“It’s just a wonderful project for us,” said Jim Sudberg, President of the Texas Rangers Baseball Foundation. “it’s the giving back to the community.”

“All the partners came together, said Mark Harland, Regional Marketing Manager for Chevrolet, “and Arlington was the right place to do it.”

Chevrolet is not only trying to protect the environment by producing fuel-efficient and zero-emission vehicles, like the Volt, but the automaker is continuing that effort through community enhancement projects like the one the company is funding at Randol Mill, Harland said.

“Planting trees,” Harland said, “every time you plant a tree that’s offsetting carbon dioxide emissions.”

Through EcoMedia, Chevrolet has provided sustainable landscaping around the playground, and planted ten new trees that line the walkway, but the largest project is still to come.

“All the partners came together, said Mark Harland, Regional Marketing Manager for Chevrolet, “and Arlington was the right place to do it.”

Last summer, arsonists torched the concession and bathroom area at the park. One of the major improvements that will be made will occur when the building is reconstructed. It will not only be new, it will be energy efficient.

“That will now have a solar installation, energy efficient lighting.” Polizzotto said.

“We thought what better place to start with project than a place that was hurt,” Harland said.

Click here for a photo slideshow of the day’s event.