Scribbly Gum Playground
Queensland | Urban
The playground is the stand-out feature of the park. As neighbouring parks already had playgrounds for younger children, this project was deliberately designed to suit children aged 10-15, a traditionally difficult age to design for. To achieve this, more challenging activities and equipment were integrated into the design of the space, as well as areas to ‘hang out’ and engage in group social play. The park also offers users the autonomy to create their own play experience without feeling like they must follow a designated pattern.
Brisbane City Council’s project team developed an innovative concept for the playground, based on the former tennis centre grandstand, where a perimeter shell structure acts as the focus of the play experience.
This allows young people (and their adventurous parents/carers) to imagine they are climbing on the derelict grandstand or performing with their friends. Council formed a partnership with The Playworks and Guymer Bailey Architects to design and build the space.
Called ‘The Arena’, the playground is a clever mix of architecture and play incorporating large slides, climbing walls and tunnels up in the air. It is not for the faint-hearted, with the pinnacle of the space being a mesh cage seven metres off the ground, reminiscent of the former Milton Tennis Centre commentator’s box.
The Arena also encourages more participatory play where parents/carers and their children can interact together to create memorable experiences.