Photo: Terra Wonder Playspace at CERES
These school holidays get out and about in Merri-bek and explore some of the fantastic parks in our suburbs. Nature play and learning places are increasingly important to achieving sustainability within our community by allowing children to interact with the natural world around them. Getting kids outdoors is also good for their physical and mental health. We’ve featured just a handful of Merri-bek playspaces below – you can see the full list here.
Terra Wonder Playspace, CERES Brunswick East
In 7 November 2020, CERES in Brunswick East announced the opening of its eagerly anticipated Terra Wonder Playspace.
The theme for the kid and adult friendly space is ‘soil’ and it has scaled up what is normally microscopic to be 500 times larger. In this almost entirely recycled and reused playspace, microscopic soil building creatures are adult sized, and a wood-crushing millipede is the size of a bus.
The space is totally plastic free and built using several recycled industrial objects such as crane, excavator and truck parts. The visually stunning Mechanical Millipede has 136 legs made from recycled rope that was salvaged from the ship, The Spirit Of Tasmania.
The design contains ‘natural loose parts’ creative space where kids are free to build with natural found objects, a high energy zone of climbing structures, ropes, tree houses, steep rocky banks, hidden spaces, a working crane requiring teamwork to operate and a little kids area with multiple sandpits and water play.
Included in the Playspace is a huge sandpit and a shade under which to play. This part of the project has involved the members of the community making the 6×6 metre shade structure from hundreds of “bacteria” hanging sculptures. The bacteria are made up of recycled materials that are UV resistant and although small (6-10 cm each), they are still 30 000 times their actual size.
Bush Reserve, 15 Bellevue St Coburg
Bush Reserve uses recycled materials from the old depot site to create a unique place for locals to meet, play and have fun in a sustainable community space.
The playground features a tree house, flying fox, swings, an old boat, wheelchair accessible liberty swing and musical sound sculptures. Other features of the park include a sheltered barbecue and picnic area, olive grove, table tennis, basketball half court, walking paths, extensive tree planting and carparking.
Coburg Lake Reserve, 2A Gaffney St Coburg North
A play space has been developed on the De Chene Parade side of Coburg Lake Reserve. Enjoy the ‘outdoor lounge’ with its magical creatures and favourite toys carved into a lounge suite. There is also a great flying fox, a five-way swing, maze and an outdoor ‘Twister’ board.
The playground on the Lake Grove side of the reserve – the main lake playground – has also been refurbished and has new equipment. A high tower with two slides has been installed, as well as a great climbing net. There is also a basket swing and other swings, rockers and spinners.
Edward Street Reserve, 6 Edward St Fawkner
Edward Street Reserve was upgraded in 2015 with new play equipment, a picnic table and seats, and drinking fountain. A large part of the park remains as grassed open space for informal play. The park includes a climbing unit with slide, swings and a spinner. Nature play elements, including rocks and logs for balancing and a picnic table and seats.
Brearley Reserve, 1-25 Heliopolis St Pascoe Vale South
This play space at Brearley Reserve has a flying fox and hilltop slide, as well as exercise equipment stations located around the park. The park features a sandpit and an all abilities playground area. It also has BBQ facilities, picnic tables and shelters plus bike parking, cricket nets and a basketball ring.
New parks coming close to home
Some of the new parks and playspaces coming to Merri-bek in the near future include:
- Bulleke-bek Park – West and Breese St Brunswick
- Garrong Park – Tinning St Brunswick
- 14 Frith Street Brunswick
- 123 Cardinal Road Glenroy
- Service St Coburg
Stay up to date and get involved with providing feedback on upcoming park projects via Conversations Moreland.