The NSW Government is inviting the community to provide feedback on new design guidelines aimed at making play spaces across NSW more inclusive for everyone in the community. Minister for Planning and Housing, Anthony Roberts, said the Everyone Can Play guidelines would be a reference for creating world-class play spaces that are inclusive and accessible for all people, including disabled and able-bodied children and their carers.
“With 1.3 million people in NSW living with a disability, an ageing population who is increasingly involved in the everyday care of grandchildren, and a multi-cultural society, play spaces should provide an inclusive experience for all.“Inclusive play spaces should be easy to access, easy to move around in, provide a range of play types and challenges, and equipped with appropriate amenities, in a comfortable environment. Inclusive play spaces allow everyone to stay for as long as they like,” Mr Roberts said.
The NSW Government is encouraging creators of new play spaces to design and build them in accordance with the new NSW Government guidelines once they are finalised through community consultation. In addition, all existing play spaces in NSW are being reviewed as part of an in-depth assessment that will identify where improvements can be made to play spaces in NSW to promote access for individuals, parents and children with mobility limitations or added needs.
The guidelines are part of Everyone Can Play in NSW – a five-year program that will fund councils by way of grants to renew, renovate or redesign existing local play spaces, and provide better designed and more inclusive play spaces.“There are more than 6,000 play spaces in NSW that are managed by local government and the NSW Government is supporting the program with $20 million in funding to help councils create or upgrade play spaces in their area.”
Commissioner of Open Space and Parklands, Fiona Morrison, said the draft inclusive play space guidelines were created through a collaborative approach between the Government, local councils, architects and the community. “They are based on three simple questions: Can I get there? Can I play? Can I stay? We want these three questions to be front-and-center in the minds of everyone involved in creating and modernising play spaces across NSW.” The draft guidelines are on public exhibition until 21 September 2018.