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Kings Park adventure playground to get $3 million expansion
New designs including an expanded rock pool, an aerial walkway almost seven metres high, a hidden tunnel and additional climbing and balancing features have been announced for an expansion of the Rio Tinto Naturescape play space in Perth’s Kings Park.
First opened in 2011, the $3 million 'stage 2' development of the popular play space is to again be funded by mining company Rio Tinto – which has contributed $9 million in its partnership with Kings Park over the past eight years.
The expansion will also include new outdoor teaching facilities with demand for education programs at the play space having tripled to 24,000 participants per year since Rio Tinto Naturescape became the new home of Kings Park Education in 2012.
Minister Jacob said the expansion of the Naturescape would significantly enhance the natural play experience of children visiting the area, commenting "over the next 12 months this Naturescape will be developed further again, providing a greater experience for kids and for families to get out and experience the natural bush.
"This is an important project because it enables children to appreciate the outdoors by getting wet and muddy, climbing ropes and rocks, and building cubbies in a natural setting.”
The Minister also expressed his belief that it is important children had the chance to experience the physical environment, even if it carried the risk of bumps and scratches, adding "unstructured time spent outdoors in nature is a critical part of a healthy childhood and a valuable part of a child's learning and development. It's also important for the future conservation of our environment.
"In our increasingly urbanised and structured lives, having fun in the natural environment, away from computer screens and our busy schedules, is good for all of us.”
Rio Tinto spokesperson Zara Fisher said the purpose of the Naturescape was to help children connect with nature, stating “the natural bush setting allows children the freedom to explore and discover, empowering them to become more informed, caring and effective environmental custodians for tomorrow.”
The site will close from 1st February while work is underway and is expected to re-open by early 2018.
Images: Artist's impression of new features in the Rio Tinto Naturescape at Perth’s Kings Park (top) and the play space in use (below)
23rd June 2016 - RIO TINTO TO PARTNER AFL INDIGENOUS PROGRAMS
23rd June 2014 - KINGS PARK NAMED ONE OF THE WORLD’S TOP 10 PARKS
30th May 2014 - KINGS PARK EXPERT ADVISES THAT RISK IS GOOD FOR CHILDREN
27th December 2012 - NATURE PLAY SETS THE HOLIDAY CHALLENGE
14th March 2012 - NEARLY HALF OF AUSSIE KIDS DON’T PLAY EVERY DAY, STUDY FINDS
17th October 2011 - KINGS PARK FACILITY TO ENTICE CHILDREN BACK OUTSIDE
5th September 2011 - 2011 KINGS PARK FESTIVAL HAS TREES FOR LIFE
30th June 2011 - KINGS PARK BECOMES HOME TO 40,000 NEW NATIVE TREES
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