New $1.2m inclusive playground at Stevenson Park delivered in partnership with community

Mayfield West is home to the city’s newest all-abilities playground with the opening of a $1.2 million active space at Stevenson Park.

The project was delivered by City of Newcastle as part of a major renewal of the 13-hectare community and sporting precinct, which is used year-round by sporting groups and is a highly valued open space for local residents.

Newcastle Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes said considerable time was spent engaging with the community to develop an agreed vision for the park and playground.

“It’s fantastic to see this new public space open and being used by families and children of all ages and abilities following what has been a stellar example of community consultation,” the Lord Mayor said.

“Working with the local community has given Mayfield West locals real ownership of this project and future upgrades that will flow from the Stevenson Park Masterplan.

“The project has greatly benefited from strong advocacy from the community, particularly through the Friends of Stevenson Park.

“This playground and the masterplan as a whole will deliver on our shared vision of Stevenson Park as a welcoming and inclusive community meeting place that offers quality sports facilities within a parkland setting.”

Vicki McCarter from Friends of Stevenson Park welcomed the opening of the new playground and said that the Stevenson Park Masterplan has given the community a new focus.

“It’s been a pleasure to be involved in this project which has provided our community a way forward through the green heart of our community – Stevenson Park.

“I, along with my fellow Friends of Stevenson Park members, am extremely pleased with the engagement process which has resulted in an amazing all abilities playground, safe pathway and new BBQ and shelter area which is perfect for neighbourhood get togethers.

“Stevenson Park is no longer just home to sporting fields, but is now a vibrant hub for our community to enjoy.”

The Stevenson Park Masterplan was developed to activate the park and create a vibrant and inclusive space for residents and visitors. Over time this will provide more car parking, fenced off-leash area for dogs, new footpath connections and upgrades to existing sporting infrastructure.

Stage one involved replacing an existing playground with a larger, upgraded all-abilities space, which was positioned in the most suitable section of the park with greater shade coverage.

The playground features a variety of equipment such as swings and birds nest basket, climbing apparatus, inground trampoline, slide, basketball hoop and handball court; while the upgrade also included the installation of shade shelters, seating, a drinking fountain and barbecue.

The Stevenson Park playground was completed under City of Newcastle’s annual asset renewal program, with support from the NSW Government’s Everyone Can Play Grant Program. City of Newcastle’s annual asset renewal program has delivered approximately $6.5 million in new and upgraded playgrounds across the city and suburbs during the past five years.

Up to four of Newcastle’s 117 playgrounds are replaced each year under the program. Work scheduled for 2020/21 also includes playgrounds at Novocastrian Park in New Lambton, Gross Street Reserve at Tighes Hill, King Edward Park in The Hill and Dangar Park in Mayfield, while a new active hub is also being planned in Wallsend.

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