Canberrans could be splashing around on an inflatable water park in Lake Burley Griffin next summer if a proposal before the National Capital Authority gets the go ahead.
Victorian-based Canberra Aqua Park wants to set up its operation at the Tarcoola Reach swimming area on Black Mountain Peninsula, and says it will consist of a number of large inflatable objects floating on the lake, which are interconnected and anchored to the lake bed.
“The multi-level challenge obstacles will provide hours of safe, entertaining and fun water activities for all Canberrans, visitors and tourists,” the planning report says.
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CAP has been in talks with the NCA and the ACT Government since October last year and there was an on-site meeting with Transport Canberra and City Services in January. A formal proposal to the Australian Government was submitted to TCCS on 18 January 2019.
The planning report on the NCA website says TCCS has been very supportive with the plan as they see the development of a new aqua facility aligned with its overall vision to attract more people to the park.
Both Black Mountain Peninsula and Weston Park in Yarralumla were identified as suitable sites but the former was preferred due to its better water quality and less susceptibility to blue green algae, as well as car parking and public amenities, including toilets and barbecues.
CAP is planning to start civil works in August and install the park in October for a November start, with all inflatable structures dismantled, packed and stored away at a remote location during the off season.
The plan is to build an “L” shaped 1600 square metre space with inflatable objects in the first year of operation, increasing to 2000 square metres the following year.
The inflatable objects will include tunnels, bridges, runways, slides, jumping pillow, obstacles, slip waves and a swing tower, and positioned in water two or more metres deep.
The planning report says the inflatable area will be cordoned off by a string of buoys and the design of the inflatables will have minimal impact to swimmers wanting to use the area and access to the island will not be affected.
Temporary gazebos or sail clothes will be installed along the shore line to provide additional shelter and a specially laid sand bed along the edge of water line will protect the high-traffic area. The park will be fenced off.
There will also be an area for up to three food vans at the end of John Cardiff Close car park and additional portable toilets if necessary.
Three temporary buildings will house a ticket booth, first aid centre and storage, and if the aqua park proves popular, two free-standing outdoor showers may be erected to allow patrons to have a quick wash-down.
The planning report says the facility will promote the local economy by providing jobs, encourage tourism and have a minimal impact to the environment.
CAP will need separate power and water connections, and have to return the site to a pre-agreed state, including removal of anchors on the lake bed and other structures on land.
The traffic report says that during busy periods CAP staff may guide buses and cars to the available parking areas on site and manage traffic flow within the development.
Consultation on the proposal is open until Monday 3 June 2019. For more information go here.