Two new Jells Park play spaces swing into action
Monday 4 October, 2021
Two new nature-based play areas are now open for young adventurers at Jells Park Wheelers Hill!
The first is an all-abilities nature-based playscape located at the Yabbie Hill section of the park. The playscape was custom built to stimulate the senses and accommodate adventurous kids of all ages and abilities.
Drawing on community feedback and the wider park environment to help bring the area to life, the new play space includes a mountain top lookout with views to the Dandenong Ranges, a giant-sized spider web, arid and rocky pinnacles, dense green forests, a meandering dry creek bed, a giant fallen log and a rock garden.
Young explorers can climb, hide, swing, slide and scamper like the critters and creatures of the Dandenong Creek catchment. Wide paths, quiet spaces, specific ground coverings and carefully selected play equipment ensure this play space will provide entertainment and adventure for everyone.
A fully accessible Changing Places facility was also recently made available for park visitors with high-support needs and their carers.
This project has been a real community effort, with local artists Jeanette Jennings and Kylie Crampton working with local primary schools Jells Park PS and Wheelers Hill PS to create the mosaics used on the turtle and yabbie features – continuing the legacy of the Lions Club donated ‘Yabbie Hill’ playground previously at the site.
In addition to the large playspace at Yabbie Hill, Parks Victoria recently built a new nature-based playground at the Jells Park East Picnic Area.
The new playground features traditional play equipment including swings and slides for younger adventurers, and also incorporates contemporary nature-based elements such as wooden climbing equipment, a sand pit and a giant blue-tongue lizard to play on!
These two playspaces were made possible thanks to a $3 million investment as part of the Government's $21.35 million Opportunities in Victorian Parks initiative that’s investing in community sport and recreation infrastructure across five sites in metropolitan Melbourne including Yarra Bend Park (Fairfield); Olinda Recreation Reserve (Olinda); Jells Park (Wheelers Hill); Albert Park Reserve (Albert Park/St Kilda) and Ryan’s Reserve (Richmond).