Callander’s playground at Centennial Park is scheduled for a complete overhaul, with work planned for completion in the Spring of 2022.
The entire playground will be replaced with new equipment, with the contract to supply and install this equipment awarded to Playground Planners, Inc., which is based in Nepean, Ontario.
The company is also designing the new playground, with the overall cost coming in at $213,755.68.
Why upgrade? The current equipment is sound, but the wooden structure makes it more difficult to maintain, especially as time moves on, and the playground is approaching 20 years old.
New equipment will cut down on maintenance costs and will also provide an opportunity to make some of the structures more accessible to children with mobility challenges.
“It will be nice to get the new equipment in,” said Mayor Robb Noon, “as it will be more accessible, and everyone will be able to use it.”
“It’s all inclusive,” he said, which was part of the impetus to upgrade as well. “It’s a really good thing for the community.”
Although the main play structure will not be able to accommodate some parkgoers with extreme mobility and sensory limitations, the municipality is installing equipment nearby that will accommodate those children and their families.
For instance, there will be the Rock ‘N’ Ship Inclusive Glider, an accessible Surface Spinner, the Quiet Grove play structure which is designed for children with cognitive challenges, and some ground mounted sensory panels.
And this is just where the fun begins, as the new designs include the Morpheus Slide, two Quantum Slides, and a Colossus Slide, all of which emanate from a large ship-like structure, which will serve as a nice reminder of the current wooden ship at the park, which is soon to be retired.
As for what the future holds for that ship, Mayor Noon plans to discuss that with public works, “to see if we can do something with it” within the town, as “it’s been a cornerstone of the park for many years.”
The playground has “been a great draw” Mayor Noon said, enjoyed by residents and visitors alike, and he looks forward to installation this coming Spring.
David Briggs is a Local Journalism Initiative reporter who works out of BayToday, a publication of Village Media. The Local Journalism Initiative is funded by the Government of Canada.