Hilton Pocket Park
Western Australia | Urban
The client, City Parklands Services, had a vision to significantly enhance the play experience within Roma Street Parkland and establish a high-quality nature-based interactive play experience whilst reinforcing its famous horticultural reputation. In partnership with Playscape Creations, Lat27 transformed the space into a new hive of activity within the broader Parklands.
Roma Street Parkland comprises a myriad of garden spaces designed for a wide range of uses, with the intention to attract visitors of all ages and backgrounds. The site chosen for the delivery of the playground formed part of a broader strategy to reactivate a quiet and disconnected corner of the parkland. The introduction of a new award winning playground destination brought with it the necessary energy to reinvigorate this space and provide a positive connection to neighbouring parkland features.
In early 2014, City Parklands Services (the client and manager of Roma Street Parkland and South Bank Parklands in Brisbane) awarded the project to the winning design team led by Playscape Creations and Lat27. LANDPLAN also formed an integral role delivering expert horticultural advice for the project. Bligh Tanner assisted with storm water management and EMF managed the electrical and lighting design. JMAC Constructions built the project in conjunction with Playscape creations.
The play experience, entwined with horticultural wonderment, was paramount to the ultimate success of this project. Great consideration was given to access, both physical and visual, safety, comfort and legibility to ensure a rich play experience was available to all visitors of all abilities and ages and future connectivity to the area to be redeveloped as Stage 2. This was achieved through equitable access to most of the play areas and play equipment, strategic rest points for parents (which also afforded casual surveillance), and a series of ‘loops’ to create a highly connected and journey-oriented play space.
The playground has evolved greatly since its opening, with foliage now enveloping the secret garden paths and rope bridges, framing slides and ever so quickly ‘breaking’ the edges of materials to give the appearance that it has always been a part of the parkland. As a result, the playground offers the unique opportunity for children to interact directly with nature.
The playground experience is designed to deliver a rich sensory experience through diversity of planting and materials along with the integration of existing mature trees. It also provides a testing ground for the children of all ages and abilities to challenge their physical ability to circumnavigate the variety of journeys within the playground.
The playground design and relationship to the surrounding parkland areas has facilitated the growth of a new community hub that affords family and broader social interaction.
The playground project delivered formed Stage One of the overall project and was constructed for approximately $550,000.