A makeover for Lawrie Hanson Park

Last month Gympie Regional Council began a $900 000 upgrade to Lawrie Hanson park which will include new play equipment (flying fox, too), shade structures, picnic facilities, BBQs, lighting and toilet block.

Laurie Hanson Park - The new "party park" is set to be a destination playground - shade sails and trees will also be added

The new “party park” is set to be a destination playground – shade sails and trees will also be added

The new “party park” is set to be a destination playground – shade sails and trees will also be added (click to view larger image)

The playground upgrade will ensure that the facility is well utilised by tourists as well as local residents and council is seeking to create a destination playground.

Mayor Mick Curran said, “This is another project that we are delivering for the Gympie Region to enhance visitation and benefit our community.

“This upgrade in line with the Foreshore Parks revitalisation plan adopted by Council and is part of a staged implementation of improvements to the Rainbow Beach area.”

The project is expected to be completed by May 2017, weather permitting.

Play equipment will include:

  • designated toddlers/junior area, with swings, large spinning cup/seat pod, rubber whales, spring toys and a ship themed multi-play structure fitted with climbing nets, slide and imagination play opportunities
  • middle to teenager aged play area, with large basket pendulum swing, flying fox and large multi-activity play structure with activities such as slide, climbing ropes and poles, spinning seat/pole
  • shade sails over the majority of the play equipment and making use of existing natural shade where possible

Light fittings will be installed to increase the play times available, use of the picnic facilities, and to improve the aesthetics of the park.

All fittings in the park and public amenities building will be LED, and controlled to allow a number of different hours of operation for each facility type.

New pedestrian paths will link the shelters and BBQ facilities to the new public amenities building and improve connection to the car park and Town Centre.

Council also plan to upgrade paving at the panoramic view plinth near the top of the stairs to Lions Park/beach.

A new Public Amenities building will be located in the park behind the existing amenities building. They will include a Parents/Carers room with DDA compliant fittings, and facilities suitable for people with disabilities.

Once new facilities are in operation,the existing public toilets will be removed to then allow completion of the pedestrian paths.

The native vegetation strip between the public amenities and the playground/picnic facilities will be planted with a range of species, to improve the protection to the precinct from strong south easterly winds, as well as replacing a number of trees and shrubs that are in natural decline.

Future works

The following improvements are currently being designed/costed for inclusion in future budget deliberations:

  • Additional pedestrian footpaths in the playground precinct linking to the car park on Kirchener Ave
  • Improved/upgraded Disabled parking adjacent to the playground
  • Additional large shelter including DDA compliant BBQ facility, located closer to parking with path connecting to new public facilities
  • Improved pedestrian crossing from park to Town Centre
  • Improved lighting at the Kirchener Ave/Wide Bay Esplanade/Rainbow Beach Road intersection and car park
  • Improved pedestrian access between Lawrie Hanson and Phil Rogers Parks
  • Additional landscaping in the park adjacent to the car park and street intersection
  • Investigations for a permanent Christmas tree with access to electricity for lighting
  • Improved/upgraded tourist information in Lawrie Hanson Park