As the autumn leaves fall from the trees between Miners Lane, Clyde, and the Clutha River, the historic red bridge can be clearly seen from the Clyde River Park play space.
The play space is still under construction but a climbing and swinging structure completed last week mimics the bridge in the background, giving future park users their own red bridge to play on.
The play space is part of the Clyde River Park upgrade that includes the Miners Lane extension project through road linking to Matau St linking the Clyde heritage precinct with the Clutha River.
In 2019, the Central Otago District Council received $612,500 from the Government’s Tourism Infrastructure Fund towards the upgrade of the Clyde river car park, access, toilets, a picnic area and play space.
The toilets are in place, as are electric barbecues, balance beams and much of the play equipment, with the “pour and play” rubber matting installed below the central red bridge climbing frame last week.
Council parks officer projects Marie Gordon said the concept for the play space was themed around the site’s riverside location and inclusion of Clyde’s iconic bridge was a combined idea from council staff and Creo Play Space Design.
The community was consulted during the process and the children at Clyde School were really excited about the plans.
“They wanted to do things like scooter and really liked the bridge idea,” she said.
Project manager Adele Eyers was proud of what was visible in the play space, but pointed out much was not obvious to the casual viewer.
The ground has been raised to avoid “once-in-a-hundred-year” floods, raised berms surround the park to prevent children running into the road, stormwater drains under the play space take runoff from the hill behind and large rocks are placed near the road to keep cars well away.
Mrs Eyers said those rocks had been sourced during the wastewater upgrades that were taking place in the town.
Other re-used materials included railway sleepers from an old bridge in Roxburgh.
The play space was expected to be completed and opened by the end of next month, Ms Gordon said.