Riverside playground aerial photo


Riverside emerges unscathed

Published: 18 Aug 2022 11:14am

Wagga Wagga’s destination playground, Riverside, has emerged unscathed from last week’s floodwaters, with Council reopening the precinct today.

Specifically designed to withstand flooding, the playground had only mud and some missing mulch to show for last week’s high water levels.

Flooded playground
FIRST FLOOD: The Riverside playground was designed to withstand floods and passed its first test effortlessly.

Strategic Asset Planner (Parks and Recreation) Ben Creighton said the playground had performed as expected after its first flood.

“We positioned Riverside beside the river in order to create an ideal gathering place and destination for residents and visitors, capitalising on our city’s greatest assets: the river and the city centre,” Mr Creighton said.

“We knew the design was sound and we’re very pleased with the result – a clean-up and some mulch replaced was the extent of work needed.”

A man shoveling mud from a playground
MUDDY JOB: Works and Playground Officer John Conlan clearing mud from the playground.

A Council crew has spent the last few days clearing mud and debris from the area, cleaning play equipment, and putting a fresh load of mulch around the plantings, which all survived.

Works and Playground Officer John Conlan said his team had been working as quickly as possible, aware of the many kids eager to get back to playing.

“There was quite a bit of mud and silt covering the ground and pathways, so we’ve been clearing that away before focusing on cleaning and disinfecting all the equipment,” Mr Conlan said.

“We wanted to ensure everything was safe and clean before we let the kids back, so we’ve really appreciated the community’s patience while we’ve been working.”

A man hoses down silted pathways
CLEAN UP: Team Leader Parks Operations (Open Space) Craig De Piazza cleared the foothpaths surrounding Riverside of slippery river silt after the floodwaters receded.

While the Riverside playground is open, Council will continue to undertake minor clean-up works in the precinct, including the Wagga beach carpark, which remains closed. The barbeques will be reinstated at a later date.

A man pressure washing play equipment
PRESSURE WASH: Council staff spent the last few days cleaning and disinfecting play equipment before reopening the Riverside playground today.

“We’re working at getting the carpark cleaned up, so over the next few days we’re asking everyone to park at the CSU Riverina Playhouse and walk along the levee footpath to the playground,” Mr Creighton said.

“The ground is still very sodden, so please stay on the paths and give the ground and the grass time to dry out and recover.

“We’re looking forward to seeing the playground full of happy families again.”

A large heap of mulch beside a playground
CLEAN AND DRY: The crew used fresh mulch to replenish the Riverside precinct’s garden beds.