Play for all
Mitchell Shire Council in Victoria is celebrating the launch of a new inclusive playground and water park, which is catering to the rapidly growing regional community.
Picture this: It’s a warm Sunday afternoon and the kids, coped up inside, are struggling to contain their boundless energy.
Take them to the Community Bank Adventure Playground in Wallan.
A short drive north of Melbourne, this stunning all-abilities playground and water park is Mitchell Shire Council’s shiny new toy.
Opened in December last year, the innovative play space at Hadfield Park prides itself on being inclusive.
It features a wheelchair accessible pathway and fully accessible Splash Park and change rooms.
The $1.9 million project would not have been possible without generous support from the State Government and the Wallan and Kilmore Community Bank Branches of the Bendigo Bank.
The bank’s contribution of $500,000 was the largest community donation they have given to any project in Australia.
The playground includes a fun and challenging five-storey tower with three slides, a tummy-churning 25m flying fox with an inclusive seat, plus sensory play spaces and covered BBQ facilities.
But it’s the water splash park, complete with an aqua drop bucket and creek bed seating with water jets, which has really put this playground on the map.
Mitchell Shire Mayor Rhonda Sanderson said the park was having widespread benefits for the growing community.
“There are so many health and wellbeing benefits associated with this playground, but it’s also having a major positive impact on our local economy.
“We know the people of the Mitchell Shire love this playground because we engaged with them in the design process, but it’s also proving a hit with people from outside the shire who are realising we really are on Melbourne’s doorstep.
“These visitors from all parts of the state spend time in our shire, shop at our local businesses, and who knows, may even fall in love with the place and move here.”
Mitchell Shire is Victoria’s fastest growing regional municipality, with an annual projected population growth of 4.3 per cent until 2031.
The playground is just one of several projects recently funded and delivered in the rapidly growing southern part of Mitchell Shire.
Other improvements include the recently opened $3.7 million Wallan Family and Children’s Centre, the Wallan Town Centre revitalisation and several major road upgrades.