Everyone can play in Wagga

Published: 02 Mar 2018 11:54am

Released 5 March 2018

Wagga Wagga can expect to enjoy a world class inclusive playspace by September this year.

A sod-turning ceremony has marked the start of construction of Livvi’s Place Wagga Wagga playspace at Bolton Park, the city’s first inclusive playspace.

“Wagga Wagga City Council is excited to see work begin on Livvi’s Place, with the support of all our funding partners including the State Government and Touched by Olivia,” Mayor of City of Wagga Wagga Councillor Greg Conkey OAM said.

“Livvi’s Place will provide a fun and safe playspace for children of all abilities, while working towards Council’s strategic directions of creating an inclusive city that promotes healthy lifestyles.”

On completion, Livvi’s Place will be a state-of-the-art playground for people of all abilities to play side-by-side on the same equipment, ensuring full integration of children and families with differences.

The NSW Government recently announced their commitment to ensuring everyone in NSW can enjoy playgrounds and playspaces across NSW.

With more than 1.3 million people in NSW living with a disability or added needs, the NSW Government is committed to planning, designing and managing community spaces that can be enjoyed by every person regardless of their level of ability.

Minister for Planning and Housing Anthony Roberts said the NSW Government wanted to ensure everyone in NSW was able to enjoy these spaces safely and inclusively.

“We are a government that cares about its community and that’s why we want to ensure open space, parks, outdoor recreation areas and play spaces are able to be enjoyed by everybody equally,” Minister for Planning and Housing Anthony Roberts said.

“To make it happen, we are introducing a clear set of playground and park design guidelines for councils and developers to follow, that will provide facilities for kids with challenges and the elderly, parents, children and support carers access to any play spaces or parks in NSW with ease.

“Our contribution of $350,000 to Wagga Wagga City Council is to help fund just such a facility in this wonderful district.”

Daryl Maguire MP, Member for Wagga Wagga said playing is an excellent education tool.

“All children should have the opportunity to interact, learn social skills and have fun in a playground built for all abilities,” Mr Maguire said.

“The review into existing playgrounds in NSW is welcomed, it is important to ensure all play spaces are accessible for everyone in our community.”

The design of Livvi’s Place was guided by principles of Universal Design and was developed in consultation with local children, people with disabilities and their families and carers.

Livvi’s Place is the result of a collaborative partnership between not for profit organisation Touched by Olivia and Wagga Wagga City Council, and is supported by the NSW Government’s Everyone Can Play program launched in November last year.

“Inclusive playspaces will create a change in the way people with differences are perceived,” Touched By Olivia Foundation Executive Officer Bec Ho said.

“Livvi’s Place is a really special project that has been driven by a great need in the local community.”

Livvi’s Place will cost approximately $500,000 to build.

The local community has come on board to support the project, with Northcott and Variety Australia both contributing funds, as well as TEYS today presenting a $50,000 cheque for the project.

Find out more about the playspace and see the designs at www.wagga.nsw.gov.au/livvisplacewagga