Taranaki Foundation is delighted to announce that the detailed design work on Stage One of Destination Play at Kāwaroa is completed and the process for finding the project’s main contractor has begun.

Taranaki Foundation Chief Executive Josh Hickford said public feedback on the initial concept had resulted in significant improvements in the final design, including:

Taranaki’s first splash pad
Also known as interactive fountains, spray parks, or wet decks, the splash pad will be an area for all ages to cool off during the hotter months. Designed with a strong focus on water sustainability, the runoff will be channelled back to the Todd Energy Aquatic Centre, where it will be treated for reuse.

Protecting the reef
After community consultation and feedback, it has been decided not to proceed with the access to the reef due to concerns about its potential impact on the reef ecosystem.

Stormwater upgrades
The work will include upgrades to NPDC’s stormwater facilities to help prevent surface flooding of the play space, walkway, and neighbouring properties. By doing these upgrades alongside the construction, we aim to minimise disruption to our community.

“These improvements are a reflection of a detailed process, wide consultation and a talented local project team that are excited to now take Destination Play to the next steps,” he said.

The next project milestone is completing the tender process for the construction of the play space itself, and this will inform the construction timeline.

Taranaki Foundation Chair Bryce Barnett said the start of construction would depend on a range of factors including the availability of the contractor, the supply of quality materials, and planning to minimise disruption to the public.

“We know our community and visitors to New Plymouth want to fully enjoy this incredible space over school holidays and it’s important that the car park remains open for users of the Todd Energy Aquatic Centre and Squash Club during peak seasons.”

“While our team is focussed on delivering Stage One, the development of Stage Two is also being actively worked on. We are confident of raising the additional funding needed, having successfully secured over $5 million for Stage One,” he said.

“Destination Play is committed to creating a vibrant, inclusive, and fun recreational space for our community. We are truly grateful to all the donors, supporters and foundation, Kāwaroa and community partners for your continued support and advocacy as we move closer to realising this vision.”

Ngāti Te Whiti Hapū Chair Julie Healey echoes this sentiment and support of the project.

“Ngāti Te Whiti continue to support Destination Play and uphold and maintain the principle of Kaitiakitangato all matters and concerns within Ngāti Te Whiti rohe.”

  • Find out more and contribute to Destination Play here
  • Read the front-page Taranaki Daily News project update here