Contractors have commenced work on the exciting new space in Cootamundra’s iconic Albert Park. Cootamundra-Gundagai Regional Council (CGRC) in partnership with Variety, the children’s charity secured funds to build a Variety Livvi’s Place.
A Livvi’s Place provides a unique environment for children of all ages and all abilities to play side by side. Extensive research and community consultation have gone into the development of these Playspaces to make them truly world class facilities.
Key characteristics of the Livvi’s Place is equal access for all abilities, which include soft fall rubber matting, visual and audio stimulation and are configured to maximise creative, physical, social, and cognitive play. The totally fenced area provides safety and security for all ages to enjoy the space giving parents and carers piece of mind, their children can explore and discover the sensory adventures developed within the space.
The large established trees within the park will make up part of the design and offer shade spaces, landscaping will be enhanced to encourage sensory and visual experiences. These features will offer a heightened experience for all people of all abilities and inspire tactile exploration.
The natural bushland theme will include natural seating with rocks and logs, pathways will meander through the space, with picnic tables and a barbeque included. A Yarning Circle will encourage cultural awareness and has been incorporated with the participation from the Cootamundra Aboriginal Working Party.
The area where the existing equipment including the picnic tables and barbeque will be reinstated as a grassed area and some equipment re-installed in the Livvi’s Place space.
Albert Park was chosen as the ideal site for a Livvi’s Place due to its proximity to Cootamundra’s CBD, existing access to footpaths, has a disabled toilet and parking areas that suit the unloading and loading of mobility equipment. The location is close to the Visitor Information Centre, Railway Station and is highly visible to visitors passing through Cootamundra.
Extensive consultation was undertaken in September 2020, the community had the opportunity to attend workshops, take part in an online survey and meet with representatives from Variety. Local schools, disability support services and the Council’s Access and Inclusion Committee were all stakeholders and contributed to the consultation process.
CGRC mayor Cr Abb McAlister said the development of a Livvi’s Place in Cootamundra will be a space that will allow freedom of movement without restriction and will offer different activities.
“Albert Park is an open public space; this facility will serve the needs of all members of our community especially those who don’t have the opportunity to play and explore in other playgrounds. It’s a need that currently doesn’t exist in our shire.
This very special place will accomplish some of the goals we committed to achieve in our Disability Inclusion Plan, develop a positive community attitude towards people with a disability and create a more liveable community for people with a disability,” Cr McAlister said.
Livvi’s Place in Albert Park Cootamundra will join an elite group of communities who offer a unique park space that has been carefully crafted as an inclusive playspace for everyone to enjoy. Expected completion is March 2022.
Detailed maps of the masterplan can be found on the CGRC Website by following this link: https://www.cgrc.nsw.gov.au/variety-livvis-playspace-albert-park-cootamundra/