Ōmokoroa Domain’s $1.06 million playground will be open for kids and adults to try out this summer, Western Bay of Plenty District Council has announced.
The fences around the playground came down in an ‘unofficial opening’ after kaumatua from Pirirākau Hapū led a blessing of the site last week.
The destination playground features mega swings, pendulum swings, junior swings, climbing nets, timber play boat, a junior mound with slide, climber and tunnel, tower, in ground trampolines, mousewheel, musical equipment and wheelchair accessible carousel.
Western Bay of Plenty District Council’s Reserves and Facilities Projects and Assets Manager, Scott Parker said he couldn’t be happier to have the playground open in time for the summer holidays.
“We’re thrilled that everyone living and visiting Ōmokoroa for Christmas will be able to enjoy the playground. A big thank you to our contractors, Downer, for pushing to get this done for the community,” said Mr Parker.
The final design for the new playground was inspired by designs from tamariki at local schools Ōmokoroa No 1, Ōmokoroa Point, Pahoia, Whakamarama and Te Puna. The five schools – all between Apata and Te Puna – were chosen because they are within the traditional mana whenua rohe of the Pirirākau hapū.
Students were keen to add some adrenaline to their play equipment and given free rein to get creative with their playground models.
“It’s heart-warming to finally see kids using the playground with huge smiles on their faces,” Mr Parker said.
The project team ran a thorough community consultation process over 18 months with tangata whenua, local community, and schools to land on the final concept.
“This is the biggest and most innovative playground in the Western Bay of Plenty. we’re really proud and we hope the community are too.”
Some finishing touches to come in January will include additional tables, seating and a barbecue, he said.
The playground is an important feature in the wider Ōmokoroa Domain upgrade which will ultimately include a boardwalk along the esplanade and foreshore, footpaths, fitness equipment and landscaping.
The playground upgrade was funded through a mix of existing asset renewal funding and capital works funding.
For more information about this project, visit westernbay.govt.nz/omokoroa-playground-upgrade