What are good playspace amenities?

A key attribute of ‘Can I Stay?’ is how accessible amenities are to playspace users. The provision of amenities or proximity to nearby amenities can influence the length of time that users spend at a playspace. At larger or regional-scale sites, amenities could include public toilets and/or cafes, whilst at smaller neighbourhood-scale sites amenities could include simple items such as seating and considerations like shade.

Grandparent and grandchild sitting on bench in playspace

An example of a larger-scale playspace that offers several amenities is the playspace located at Sydney Park, Alexandria, NSW. The playspace is located within walking distance of public transport options and includes a carpark, public toilets, shade, table and chairs, a kiosk, barbecues, seating and drinking fountains. This enables users to stay at the playspace for longer periods of time, including up to a full day.

The ‘Wildplay’ playspace, located at Centennial Parklands in Sydney, is an example of successful integration of existing amenities to a new playspace. The new playspace has been located next to the existing toilet block, within the Discovery Centre. This is a good example of how new playspaces can be strategically located to enable access to existing amenities, negate the need to provide new amenities and ultimately enable users to stay for longer periods of time at the playspace.

Various examples of local or neighbourhood-scale playspaces across NSW successfully incorporate amenities appropriate to the scale and usage of the space. For example the inclusion of seating with back and arm rests or locating seating and/or play equipment in shaded areas. Even small inclusions such as these can enable users to feel more comfortable in the space and stay for longer periods.

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