For the story I'm writing, I have a scene that takes place on a playground. Because I
suffer from enjoy World Building Disease, I wound up making an exact plan for the playground. Specifically, it is 40,000 ft² with some swings, spring riders, a couple 100 ft² sandboxes, several tunnels, a balance beam, quite a few balance "steps", a fairly substantial "obstacle course" (e.g. climbing boulders, jungle gyms), and a modest "fort" (i.e. platforms, steps, a slide).
Now, here is where I have a bit of a conundrum and world building question... This is supposed to serve 24 children.
Similar forts claim to have a capacity of 45 children (just for the fort?). While that particular claim seems ridiculous, even those more conservative estimates I've seen are much higher than my own estimate of 4-5, and I also have a lot more raw square footage. It seems as if my capacity estimate is way off...
... or is it? This world isn't populated by humans, but by anthropomorphic animals.
Why is this an appropriate, even necessary, amount of space for my world? ("Because it is not gratuitous overkill, even for humans" is an acceptable answer, if you can justify it, but this doesn't seem to be the case.)
(For bonus points, how does age factor into this? That is, does my ratio of equipment to open space need to change depending whether the children or younger or older?)
Note that the "24 children" target is simultaneous occupancy; that is, a full two dozen children all running around at the same time. They also cover all species; herbivores, omnivores, and carnivores all mixed together (with appropriate supervision, of course!). The dietary ratios are also somewhat skewed; no more than half are "pure herbivores" (i.e. vegetarian), about half eats some mix of meat and not-meat, and a few (2-4) are obligate carnivores. (The latter — e.g. felines — can and do also eat fruits and vegetables, but generally try to minimize grains, and most of their calories must be from meat.)