Atlanta, GA

Gwinnett County Sensory Treehouse Project

Sophie-Ann McCulloch

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ATLANTA, GA - Announced on July 30, the Board of Commissioners Gwinnett County has approved the sensory treehouse project with a $4.1 million grant to support the development. The treehouse is specifically designed to assist people of all ages and disabilities.

Located in the Gwinnett Environmental and Heritage Center, the project will help visitors with disabilities to feel the sensation of being in a trees canopy under safe and controlled environment.

“The sensory treehouse will provide people the opportunity to connect with the ecosystem and challenge their senses,” said Chairwoman Nicole Hendrickson.

“It will help children without disabilities perceive the world as experienced by children with disabilities and the other way around by immersing them in nature."

The sensory treehouse structure will follow the shape of a giant American chestnut tree in Georgia’s historic forests with various materials and textures. To make the ambience as real as possible, visitors will be engulfed by an indoor exhibit that uses audio, video, and scent to allow visitors to feel the real experience of being in a piedmont forest.

To reach the treehouse location, visitors will be facilitated with ADA-accessible boardwalk with self-directed learning stations, or nodes that will connect them to nature by smell, sight, or touch.

The project will also have a tilting landscape, so when visitors are close to the ground, the slope will create an illusion of height that will make them feel as if they are among the trees.

According to the website, this project will begin in the fall and will be finished next year in 2022.

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