25 years untouched Aorere Park Playground revitalised

Publish Date : 19 Apr 2024
Local playground image 2
The fresh new Aorere Park Playground and new toilet and changing room block.

After more than 25 years, the Aorere Park Playground in Papatoetoe has been given a $2.2 million dollar upgrade that is sure to delight the local community, thanks to Ōtara-Papatoetoe local board.

The revamped playground was recently blessed by local kaumātua Chris Pomare and is now open to the public to enjoy.

The playground upgrade is in addition to the new toilet and changing room block, as both assets were in a state of disrepair, unsuitable for their intended use and had increasing maintenance costs.

Local playground equipment.

Recognising the need to address these issues, the local board made the decision to revamp the facility to better serve the growing demand.

Local board chair Apulu Reece Autagavaia shares, “Over the course of 25 years, the Aorere Park playground has been left in a state of neglect. However, this board was determined to bring about positive change by upgrading the playground, toilet and changing room block, not only for our community, but also for the Papatoetoe and Māngere East area.
“We are excited to contribute to these spaces for our growing community and provide them with something new, improved and up to date, which is sure to bring joy to both children and adults alike.”

Physical works began in January and additional play elements include a slide tower, rope play space, a new set of swings, water play, free hold seat bench, picnic bench, toddler play area, outdoor exercise equipment, ground resurfacing and a half basketball court.

“Thanks to the exceptional efforts of our Parks & Facilities team, they completed the project ahead of schedule, and ensured that it is now fully functional and available for public use.

“The improvements have made a significant difference, especially when compared to its previous state which had less than five pieces of out-dated equipment. It is now more functional, and our locals have more to play with.

“In fact, during the blessing ceremony on Wednesday 18 April, we noticed a group of local rangatahi eagerly waiting to play on the basketball court. As soon as the blessing concluded, they immediately started playing basketball (it was not there previously), and just to see the pure joy on the faces, makes it all worth it”, says Apulu.

All the equipment is New Zealand and locally sourced, and the official playground opening is scheduled for later in July.

To view a video of the new and improved playground, visit the local boards Facebook page here.

The old Aorere Park playground.

The old Aorere Park playground.

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