Backyard to Bush’s new play area
Wednesday 19th December 2012

Taronga is excited to unveil an exciting newly renovated farm playground in the much-loved Backyard to Bush precinct, just in time for the holidays!
It’s been over six months in the works, but the final result has been well worth the wait. Visitor Learning Officer, Nicole Whitfield has been working on the project, and is thrilled to have a new space in which kids can play and connect with the Zoo , whilst their parents can enjoy a relaxing break in the shade.

The success of the Backyard to Bush playground is the result of a collaborative effort between Zoo staff, local artists, and play specialists including landscape architect Fiona Robbé, who has overseen the project while working on the forthcoming Lemur Forest Adventure.

Nicole explains that the idea behind the new project is to encourage kids to enjoy their surroundings, and think creatively about the ways in which they relate to the world around them by thinking, feeling and interacting with their environment.

The new playground is like no other. Water splashes over a sandstone frog-sculpture into  a pond lined with stainless steel yabbies, ducks and lily-pads, in which pumps will be installed next year so that children can control the water flow through the shallow water play area. Timber sheep and dog sculptures  and  themed seating cater for  both children and adults,  featuring intricate wood carving work. Through these innovative modern designs, toddlers and older kids can enjoy the playground, which allows them to discover new features at every corner.

Nicole explains that the farm-themed playground allows parents to supervise, but more importantly, interact with their children during play. The netted bridge and towers allow children to climb safely up high, and the nearby staircase enables parents to join in on the action.

Using the expertise of the Zoo’s own carpenters, led by Brendan Shipway, the innovative play equipment from Moduplay and the beautiful sculptures designed by woodwork artist Andrew Smith, stonemason Chris Bennett and artist Tim Johnman, Taronga has managed to create a very unique playground and a new oasis within the Zoo. With equipment imported from around the globe, this playground has been one of Taronga’s most ambitious projects yet, so it’s safe to say that this creative space will be attracting visitors for years to come.

If you’re enjoying the dinosaur walk through the Zoo, why not make a stop at the playground on the way? There is plenty to see and do, so be sure to take a look at our exciting new addition to Backyard to Bush.