Benito Juárez Park

Maywood, CA

In collaboration with The Trust for Public Land, we worked closely with the neighborhood to create a place that nurtures dreams and honors local heritage. Inspired by the community’s vision to honor their cultural hero, this park pays tribute to Benito Juárez and draws design inspiration from his hometown of Oaxaca. In just 0.3 acres, our design goals combine community gathering space, creative play, skateboarding, and soccer within the Oaxacan framework.

A decorative gated entry, plaza, and trellis structure greets visitors and provides shaded space for the community to gather and celebrate their history. Commemorative mosaic inlays in the entry walkway tell the story of how the park came to be, and the background of the cultural heritage that is embedded within.

Colorful play sculptures with tile work by artist Jolino Beserra reference alebrije wood carvings, a popular Oaxacan tradition. Adorned with recycled and repurposed ceramics, the alebrijes create opportunities for kids to interact with the playground in unexpected ways.

The soccer pitch provides a place for cross-generational play and is framed by fencepost cactus, paying homage to the iconic walls of cacti found in the Jardín Etnobotánico de Oaxaca. Colorful succulent and drought-tolerant plantings throughout the park reference the Oaxacan gardens while relying on locally climate-appropriate species.