Bendigo Violet Street Primary School

RB landscapes had the opportunity to design and construct an interactive, natural play space for Bendigo Primary School. Acting as a building entrance and seated area, the space was completely transformed into an adventure play ground with rainwater gardens, bamboo forests and creative play pit.

Underpinning the entire design was the use of reclaimed and recycled natural materials which creates a naturalistic aesthetic and also demonstrates the sustainable use of materials.

On entry to the space, is a creative play pit of softfall mulch and cut logs.  

A stack of reclaimed tyres filled with Bamboo form the outside of the first sensory island. The inner tyres filled with softfall rubber, encourage the students to climb and explore and enjoy a range of adventures in this Bamboo forest. From the Bamboo forest, they can then explore the second sensory island filled with lush tree ferns. 

Opposite the sensory islands are rows of log steppers of varying heights. The undulating surface offers opportunity for improving balance coordination and encourages movement.

A terraced sand area includes a water pump, which can be manually operated by the students and allows opportunities for water and wet sand play. The water play pump plays an important part in the collection and treatment of stormwater integral to the sustainable focus of the space. Stormwater falls from the roof and into the raingarden, where it is directed into an underground tank, which is then pumped back up by the hand pump. The entire system works to filtrate the water, cleaning it before sending back out into storm water drains. Here students can learn about water quality, filtration and the sustainable management of water.

Rows of reclaimed cut logs, a bamboo forest and additional rain garden creates a restful space to sit and relax. This space can function as an outdoor classroom or a spot for students to relax during recess. 

The finished result is an excellent example of how a small area can be completely transformed into a space where students can play, explore and engage with nature.

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