A nature-based play park that includes timber from historic Tharwa Bridge and which University of Canberra landscape architecture students helped design with the community has opened in Giralang.
A joint collaboration between the ACT Government and the developers of the adjacent shopping centre, the Giralang Community Nature Play Park is designed to encourage more children to get outside, get active and have fun.
Member for Yerrabi Suzanne Orr, representing the Minister for Transport and City Services, said the park was a community effort and offered a number of play areas for children of all ages including a small bike trail, dry creek bed, balance beams, an amphitheatre terrace, trees and other plantings, climbing logs, a solar clock, seating area and more.
“The Giralang Community Nature Play Park is something I have been working with the community on for the past year. It was great to actively involve the community in the design and decision-making processes for this new park, and the feedback I have received has been overwhelmingly positive,” Ms Orr said.
“I’m really excited that the park also makes use of some of Canberra’s precious history, with old ironbark timber from Tharwa Bridge – the oldest standing bridge in the ACT, first built in 1895 – being reused as bench seats, bridges across the dry creek bed and retaining walls,” Ms Orr said.
The Giralang Community Nature Play Park was co-designed and partially delivered by the local community, businesses and stakeholders.
“University of Canberra landscape architecture students worked with residents to create concept designs, with student Adam Barneveld’s design being the main concept that the ACT Government has worked with,” Ms Orr said.
“Local Year 3 and 4 school students worked with Wellspring Environmental Arts and Design to design the artwork for the timber maze poles and paint and stamp the colour onto the poles.
“It was wonderful to be able to include the community in this project. The creation of this recreational space was driven by the community and I’m overjoyed with the outcome. Local students have worked hard to bring their own vibrancy and colour to the park and I hope everyone who visits Giralang Community Nature Play Park enjoys the space that has been created.
“This is a really special place because everyone has worked together and helped to deliver a park that the community can be really proud of,” Ms Orr concluded.
Further works to be completed by the shopping centre developer – including car parking, additional seating, a shade structure and landscaping – will be delivered as part of the shopping centre redevelopment program in 2018-19.
Ms Orr said natural play spaces had also recently been created in Finn Street, O’Connor; Telopea Park in Barton and in the Tuggeranong Town Park in Greenway.