Nature playground in Bassendean could soon be a reality

Nature playground in Bassendean could soon be a reality

THE design process for a nature-based playground at Sandy Beach Reserve will be “full-steam ahead” if Bassendean council approves the site at a meeting on December 13, according to the Town’s community development director.

The Town of Bassendean has wanted to build a nature-based regional playground since 2008 but councillors rejected a proposal in the 2015-16 budget.

However, $290,000 was allocated to the project’s design process in the 2016-17 budget.

Community development director Graeme Haggart said the ongoing consultation period involved forming a community working group, workshops and a survey that ended on December 2.

“Work to design the Town’s newest and biggest nature-based playground is well underway with the facilities designers – Nature Play Solutions – having been appointed,” he said.

Nature Play Solutions outdoor play consultant Kerry Logan said designs would be based on community input and previous projects.

“Sandy Beach Reserve has many natural assets – the well-established trees, the beautiful Swan River winding past and the little sandy beaches – and has many regular visitors who enjoy the amenity and recreation opportunities the reserve offers,” she said.

“Our design will aim to capitalise on the site’s existing natural features while expanding the variety of play opportunities currently available and encourage more people of all ages to be engaged in outdoor activity.”

Bassendean resident Sarah Quinton said a new playground was long overdue.

“I used to play down here, my mum used to bring me here where we grew up but it would have been nice to have something else to play on,” she said.

“I think there was an idea for a go-kart track for kids with disabilities, a water stream and just cater for all ages.”

Ms Quinton said her son, Jarvis, was looking forward to a nature-based play area.

“I encourage my 18-month-old to get muddy, swim in the shallows of the river and feel the textures of our beautiful natural surroundings, in hopes he will appreciate it, and protect it,” she said.

“Having the nature playground set on the shores of the river means I can give him permission to explore in a nature based surrounding independently, without me having to hover over him.”

Bassendean resident Donna Hile said there were no nice playgrounds in Bassendean.

“I think it is going to be really good for the kids to have somewhere safe to go that gives them a chance to use their imagination and be kids,” she said.