Project: St Kilda Subdivision Playground
Client: Waipa District Council
When the Waikato Expressway bisected a flourishing dairy farm on the eastern outskirts of Cambridge, father and son Mike and Matt Smith saw an opportunity to create an eco-village style of semi-rural living. The result is the 80-hectare, 285-lot, St Kilda subdivision on the north side of Cambridge.
Environmental considerations were at the fore throughout the entire development process. The 19 hectares allocated for recreational space contain 16kms of shared cycle and walkways, over 40,000 native plans have been in included in the landscaping, while two wetland areas in the heart of the subdivision hold and treat concentrated stormwater.
Community safety and connectivity were also central to the development, with the local café and adjoining St Kilda Playground a focal point for families within and beyond the subdivision.
Working with Line & Design Landscapes to supply and install the playground equipment, the award-winning design, equipment and planting are all eco-friendly. From the double bay log swing with basket, infant bucket and strap swings, to the rockers, slides, balance log, stepping and overhead activities, natural timber materials predominate.
Earth mounds support embankment slides and slope climbing, thick bark mulch and low grasses keep the ground surface usable in all weathers and a full-sized basketball court lies at the centre of the playground.
There is also a concreted bike and scooter track around the ground’s perimeter, its smooth surface a boon for wheelchair users.
Since all of St Kilda’s outdoor amenities are open to visitors and residents alike, the playground, café and adjoining wetland walks are in constant use, with the playground a popular drawcard for families. The range of activities on site caters for toddlers to teens. Strategically placed seating enables caregivers to enjoy some respite while keeping an eye on their active charges.
A founding vision of an environmentally sensitive subdivision with human connection at its heart has been realised.