Busselton Playscape Wins AILA’s National Award for Excellence

December 19, 2018
“The design is really a collection of physical and visual maritime stories, encapsulating the spirit of Busselton and providing a multidimensional framework in which the community can play, engage and grow,” said PLAN E Director David Smith. “To see our hard work recognised with such a prestigious national award is an honour, and one that humbles us, as our aim was ultimately to provide the community with a genuinely magical playscape offering a heightened sense of adventure, fun and imaginative play.“

The project, by Perth’s PLAN E Landscape Architects, has taken out the top gong in its Play Spaces category with the prestigious Award of Excellence.

The awards were held in Melbourne at the Plaza Ballroom last night (Thursday October 10), a celebration of projects of national significance that are shaping green, open and public spaces across Australia. It highlights the growing impact of landscape architecture on the spaces we inhabit.

Sea Play on the Bay draws on the local maritime and coastal environment to create an adventurous play space featuring marine and nautically themed elements.

“The City of Busselton envisioned a play space adjacent to the Busselton Jetty as an iconic recreational facility and a major attraction for both regional visitors and the local community, providing a variety of activities for a range of age groups and abilities, day and night,” said David Smith

The jury “commended the use of non-traditional, bespoke play elements and dramatic lighting to extend playground patronage, allowing users to enjoy the space during the day and at night”. They also noted that “exploration and discovery are encouraged through a variety of play opportunities for all ages, with areas designed for all abilities”, and that “distinctive vertical elements add excitement, scale, a sense of movement and high-seas drama”.

PLAN E challenged the conventional concepts of a seaside playground with dynamic arrangement of some truly bespoke elements. “The playground was designed to respond to the five primary senses, being vision, audition (hearing), somatosensory (touch), vestibular (movement and balance) and proprioception (relative position of neighbouring parts of the body and strength),” said David Smith.

Featuring both a dry and wet area, it’s a diverse and innovative design for all seasons beneath mature Norfolk Island Pines. “The tilted clipper ship at the centre resembles those that once frequented Busselton Jetty, enhanced by the ‘bow wave’ deck, a giant partially submerged squid and whale,” said David Smith. “The wet space features a gigantic whale tail shedding water, as if just flicked out of the ocean, while special effects coloured lighting adds a magical night-time experience for users.”

Rope, granite rocks and timber – including recycled wharf timbers creating an elevated jetty – are used in various forms to reflect a maritime environment while steel provides a sturdy, durable material appropriate to the climatic conditions.

Join Our Design

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
Join Our Amazing
THere's More

Post You mIght Also Like

All Posts

PLAN E’s 3D capability bringing design to life

PLAN E has recently expanded our broad skill set with the development of our 3D visualisation capability. Through the use of a suite of rendering technologies, we are now able to offer our clients the option of generating detailed, realistic 3D imagery and videos that can bring their projects to life during the design stage.
Studio Update

PLAN E’s Melbourne studio update

It certainly is a challenging time in Melbourne at the moment and our thoughts are very much with our fellow Victorians at this time!

Bushland Nature Trail, Kings Park

With the recent lockdown, there has been an increased focus on using our parks for recreation and activity. Kings Park is a great destination for outdoor exercise, and at the same time exploring the myriad delights this iconic world-renowned park has to offer.

Garden to Honour Jaye Radisich Officially Opens in Ellenbrook

A new memorial garden in the heart of the Ellenbrook Town Centre officially opened on Friday 28th April, as part of Developer LWP Property Group’s new town centre precinct, Drummond.
Studio Update


PLAN E is proactively responding to the ongoing COVID-19 situation and its potential impact on our staff, clients, associates and current projects.