Play areas planned for Waterbeach homes development
Plans for play areas featuring a ‘landmark’ treehouse climbing frame and other bespoke play equipment for future children living in Waterbeach to use have been revealed.
Final sign-off has been requested for detailed plans for two new play areas for the future families in the Waterbeach development, which will provide thousands of new homes.
The two play areas are the Northern Gateway Space, which will be a space for imaginative play and Waterbeach Woods Neighbourhood equipped play area.
In planning documents included as part of the reserved matters application submitted to South Cambridgeshire District Council, it said: “The proposed play spaces will be an important amenity for new residents, in particular young families, as part of the early community offer.”
The application was submitted to the district council by the secretary of state for defence, and Urban and Civic Waterbeach Ltd. The play areas are the Northern Gateway Space and Waterbeach Woods Neighbourhood.
The Northern Gateway play area will be located near to the primary school. A ‘tree stump scramble trail’ will enable children to climb, balance and jump. Also planned are timber stepping stumps and timber play sculptures.
In planning documents it said: “The Northern Gateway [play area] design will support a range of activities focused upon imaginative play and learning based upon the overall theme set around the life cycle of trees.
“This has influenced the design of a range of features within the [play area] including the use of materials and the design of public art and equipment with all seeks to reflect the setting of the [play area] at the heart of the woodland of the Northern Gateway.
“The focal point of the [play area] is a central great oak tree. The features of the [play area] will be arranged to relate to the central oak tree in a horseshoe pattern extending to the perimeter of the space.”
The Waterbeach Woods play area will be set in existing woodland, and will incorporate play equipment with the trees.
The play area’s central ‘landmark’ feature will be a bespoke treehouse climbing frame made up of towers, bridges, ropes and slides.
In the planning documents it said: “The design of [treehouse] carefully reflects the natural setting in the woods, in terms of form and also the choice of materials.
“The treehouse play will feature natural changes in gradient which will become an obstacle – and safety feature – for young children.
“The treehouse play will be sited in the northwest part of the play area and will be the largest area which is uncovered from the existing canopy.
“Areas of shade will be provided around the equipment and the majority of seating will be provided here in the form of picnic tables, also allowing the area to be well surveilled.”
Also planned is a hedgehog nest slide, a bouncing disk, a wildlife wheelspin, a nest swing, a four-seater seesaw stepping posts, a hedgehog sculpture, jumping mushrooms, balancing ropes and a xylophone.
Around the play equipment, the ground will be surfaced with areas of bonded rubber safety mulch, and in more ‘informal areas’ a loose fill bark chipping is planned.