Urban Play worked in collaboration with CUSP Landscape Architecture, Eureka Landscapes and Touched by Olivia to deliver a multigenerational playground that encourages the whole family to get outside, soak up the sunshine and play! Designed for children of all ages and abilities, the Spinnaker Park playspace sits adjacent to the Newport Retirement Living Project, making it the ideal area for children, parents and grandparents to meet, socialise and play together. The playground’s nautical theme inspires children to set sail on their imagination across the high seas. We were lucky enough to catch up with John Murray, the Senior Landscape Architect on the project and talk all this playspiration and future playground trends. This is what he had to say.
1. What was your design inspiration for Spinnaker Park?
The playground was to respond to the refined, coastal environment of Newport, and particularly draw on nautical and marine themes given the parks position on the edge of Newport Lake. The colours of the sea and sky and the forms of sails and hulls were to be reinterpreted throughout the playground structures and surfacing, providing clear visual and thematic connections between the playground and lake.
2. What is your favourite thing about designing parks or playspaces?
Knowing that if a park or playspace is thoughtfully designed it has a great chance of becoming part of the fabric of the local community and will be valued for many years to come.
3. What trends can you see evolving in park design in the next 5 years?
Increased desire from clients for playspace designs that contribute to the identity and ‘sense of place’ of a project or community rather than collections of off the shelf equipment. Our warming climate will also see waterplay become a standard feature in many playgrounds (as is already occurring), along with greater emphasis on ample shade provision.
About John Murray – CUSP Landscape Architecture
With over 16 years’ experience, John has managed a wide range of projects including urban open spaces, transport infrastructure, residential estates, parks and multi-unit apartment developments. Of particular note are Newport, Stockland lakefront residential community, the Townsville Recreational Boating Park completed in 2015 and the Landscape Masterplan prepared for the Strengthening Grantham Project in 2011. John has experience developing projects through all phases of the design process from concept design to construction supervision and contract administration.
Previous to working in Brisbane John gained experience in Sydney, working on a variety of project types including sites of national significance such as Admiralty House and Victoria Barracks.
John has a particular interest in the study and management of landscapes of cultural significance, which informs his wider design philosophy as it is applied to the initiation and development of design concepts across all project types.