Safety makeover for play­ground

Kapi-Mana News - - NEWS - By AN­DREA O’NEIL

A Can­nons Creek play­ground which re­sem­bles a crime scene and hosts drunks, tag­gers and fist fights by night, is to get a safety-con­scious makeover.

Cal­liope Park on War­spite Ave will get two new play­grounds and bet­ter light­ing and land­scap­ing this year as part of Can­nons Creek’s vil­lage plan, with $100,000 of fund­ing from Porirua City Coun­cil.

The park’s over­haul comes af­ter a sur­vey of park users high­lighted anti-so­cial be­hav­iour and vi­o­lence.

‘‘It opened my eyes to what the park is like for res­i­dents. There’s a real con­cern when it gets dark. The place has a feel­ing of be­ing un­safe,’’ Can­nons Creek Res­i­dents’ and Ratepay­ers’ As­so­ci­a­tion vice chair­man Jon Black­shaw says. ‘‘It stopped the com­mu­nity feel­ing like they had own­er­ship of the place.’’

Two new play­grounds will be built in the park for dif­fer­ent age groups, mod­elled on suc­cess­ful play­grounds at Aotea La­goon and Wai­tan­girua.

The play­grounds will be built on the edge of the park near­est to War­spite Ave and will be well-lit.

‘‘Peo­ple will be able to see it from the street. It’s go­ing to make a big dif­fer­ence,’’ Mr Black­shaw says.

The ex­ist­ing play­ground is tucked into a corner and looks men­ac­ing on misty nights with its sin­gle light over­head, he says.

‘‘It looks like a crime scene from a movie.’’

Other im­prove­ments in­clude bet­ter drainage, a cir­cuit path around the park’s borders, and en­cour­ag­ing sports by lev­el­ling out the park’s grass sur­face, which Mr Black­shaw de­scribes as a ‘‘bumpy bowl’’ shape at present.

The park’s bushes were re­moved last year af­ter re­ports of teenagers sleep­ing in the park at night, Mr Black­shaw says.

Prob­lems with Can­nons Creek youth will not sim­ply dis­ap­pear once the park is cleaned up and the com­mu­nity needs to dis­cuss other ways of help­ing trou­bled teens, Mr Black­shaw says.

‘‘Youth are like guided mis­siles. They need to have di­rec­tion.’’

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.