New play­ground opens

Tim­ing proves per­fect

The Northern Star - - NEWS -

A NEW play­ground at Balzer Park in Dunoon was opened last week by Lis­more Mayor Isaac Smith and Lis­more MP Thomas Ge­orge.

The fa­cil­ity has been in the mak­ing since 2015, when the North East Com­mu­nity Panel fa­cil­i­tated by Lis­more City Coun­cil iden­ti­fied a lack of play­ground equip­ment at Balzer and Tamarind parks to cater for lo­cals and vis­i­tors.

In­stead of sim­ply wait­ing for some­thing to hap­pen, the North East Com­mu­nity Panel came up with an in­ge­nious so­lu­tion that they put to the coun­cil: sell a pocket park in Cedar Drive, Dunoon, to fund the in­stal­la­tion of a new play­ground at Balzer Park.

The coun­cil’s Com­mu­nity En­gage­ment and Part­ner­ing Of­fi­cer, Cather­ine Rosen­baum, said it was a great way to achieve com­mu­nity goals.

“Coun­cil has formed a col­lab­o­ra­tive and pro­duc­tive part­ner­ship with the com­mu­nity through­out this process, con­sult­ing with those af­fected, iden­ti­fy­ing a suit­able lo­ca­tion and choos­ing suit­able equip­ment to in­stall,” she said.

The com­mu­nity ef­fort did not stop there.

On top of prof­its from the sale of the pocket park in ex­cess of $100,000, a fur­ther con­tri­bu­tion of $15,000 was se­cured through the NSW Gov­ern­ment’s Com­mu­nity Build­ing Part­ner­ship Grant by the Dunoon & District Sports Club.

While not ev­ery­thing on the wish list could be achieved, panel mem­bers have al­ready vol­un­teered their time and skills to com­plete path­ways and land­scap­ing works.

“While the com­mu­nity con­sul­ta­tion played a big role in the fi­nal choice of equip­ment, some com­pro­mises had to be made due to price and on­go­ing main­te­nance,” Ms Rosen­baum said.

“This is still a big win for the com­mu­nity and proves what can be achieved by ev­ery­one work­ing to­gether,” Ms Rosen­baum said.

PHOTO: CON­TRIB­UTED

OPEN­ING the new Balzer Park play­ground in Dunoon are Lis­more MP Thomas Ge­orge and Lis­more Mayor Isaac Smith (centre) with (l-r) North East Com­mu­nity Panel mem­bers Bron­wen Camp­bell, De­nis Matthews, Ross McDougall and Trevor Tuckey, Coun­cil­lor Dar­lene Cook and Coun­cil’s Com­mu­nity En­gage­ment and Part­ner­ing Of­fi­cer Cather­ine Rosen­baum.

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