Families can now delight in an exciting new nature-themed playspace in Blackwood’s Wittunga Botanic Garden, which has officially opened.
South Australian Minister for Environment and Water, the Hon David Speirs MP, attended the official opening, which saw many locals and visitors enjoy the new playspace for the very first time.
Federal Minister for Communications, Urban Infrastructure, Cities and the Arts, the Hon Paul Fletcher MP, said construction of the playground is funded under the Adelaide City Deal.
“This is a great example of how the City Deal is supporting Adelaide’s cultural and tourism economy, and providing a safe, fun environment for families to spend time together,” Minister Fletcher said.
“Locals can also enjoy other works to the Wittunga Botanic Garden funded through the City Deal, including improvements to the lake’s beach, a popular splash play area for children, plus an accessible lake-viewing platform and trail around the lake’s perimeter.”
Minister Speirs said children will have fun as they learn about nature and biodiversity through play and exploration.
“The playspace provides experiences for children that will naturally convert into educational learning opportunities – whether it’s through the bespoke climbing frames that represent a protea, bottlebrush and nut, the ribbed musical frog or the many other immersive play areas,” Minister Speirs said.
“The design includes 500 new plants which showcase the similarities between flora found in Australia and South Africa – neighbouring countries when Gondwanaland was one huge landmass.”
Federal Member for Boothby Nicolle Flint said the new accessible playground embraces the botanical world and celebrates Aboriginal culture, and was designed in collaboration with students from the local Blackwood Primary School.
“The new playspace is a marvellous destination within the garden where families can enjoy our local environment, and rare plants and trees in the Wittunga Gardens, and spend time with one another and nurture their physical and mental wellbeing,” Ms Flint said.
“Around 40 jobs were also supported during construction, at a time our state needed them most.
“These are exactly the sort of benefits the City Deal is all about, and why the Morrison and Marshall governments continue to invest in and deliver projects that build on our beautiful city’s strengths to enhance liveability, create jobs and secure a stronger economic future.”
The new playground includes:
- Flower and nut cubbies with sliding and climbing opportunities, as well as great views over the garden.
- A dry billabong providing a rich natural environment with reeds, rocks and pebbles that allow children to develop gross motor skills through loose parts play. The reeds in the billabong will connect to Kaurna heritage, as the Kaurna meaning of Wittunga comes from a reference to reeds.
- Frog Island, where visitors can experiment with music through a ribbed frog.
- An in-ground wheelchair trampoline, which will delight children with accessibility needs.
- A basket swing, strap and toddler swings.
- A super-sized park bench for the grown-ups.
- The log scramble, to help hone children’s gross motor skills.
- A rock mound with play tunnel and path access over the tunnel for elevated views across the garden.
- A dedicated lawn to provide kick-about play opportunities.
- Accessible picnic setting and pod decks for seating.
The Australian Government fully funded the $400,000 playground, on top of $350,000 in funding to deliver the previously completed landscaping, lakeside walking trail and beach and the planting of 500 native and South African plants.
The Wittunga Botanic Garden is open daily from 8.30am to 5pm and entry is free.