Dr Deborah Cleland is an interdisciplinary social scientist, with a background in human ecology and natural resource management.
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The below media release was originally published by ACT City Renewal Authority on 7 August 2018.
1,300 survey responses were received earlier this year to inform the research findings outlined in the Canberra Destination Playgrounds Study report prepared by the University of Canberra’s Play, Creativity and Wellbeing team.
Dr. Cathy Hope, co-ordinator of the Play, Creativity and Wellbeing team said, “It’s clear that playgrounds are still a tremendously relevant form of entertainment, activity and means of exercise for children, and their parents and carers.
“On average, respondents said they visited a playground at least once a week primarily to engage children in play, to socialise with others and to spend time in the natural environment.
“While Canberra already has some great playgrounds, there are improvements that can be made when creating future playgrounds to ensure play facilities are exemplary in their siting and design.
“More shade, more challenging and diverse forms of play, more and better facilities and equipment for a wider range of ages were just some of the findings I came across in preparing this report.”
City Renewal Authority chief executive Malcolm Snow said, “Play spaces within the city and town centres are a key element in creating a successful city precinct. In renewing our precinct we are committed to providing places for people that nurture positive experiences within our public spaces.”
“This playground report will initially help us plan and design a unique play space for West Basin as part of future stages of redevelopment. The study shows there is a clear demand for destination playgrounds. As greater numbers of people move into the precinct it is crucial we provide safe and accessible facilities for people to play, socialise and relax.
“More than simply providing physical infrastructure, the provision of play spaces supports multiple health, wellbeing, social, and economic benefits,” Mr Snow said.
RegNet Post-Doctoral Fellow, Deborah Cleland is a contributor to this study report. See the full report attached.