Wulaba Park

Project Name: WULABA PARK

Recipient: Sturt Noble Associates Pty Ltd

Client: Meriton Apartments/City of Sydney

Project team: 

  • Sturt Noble: Liam Noble, Helen Pearce, Hao Wang & Belinda Xu
  • Public Artist: Nuha Saad
  • Tower Fabricator/Structural Engineer: Fleetwood Engineering

Project address: Amelia Street near the corner of O'Dea Avenue and South Dowling Street in Waterloo NSW 2017

The design for Wulaba Park creates distinctive and memorable play spaces. A custom designed play tower referencing the classic Hills Rockets of parks gone by, and a raised fort landing incorporates multiple play experiences and is the key visual element in the park. This unique play structure is designed to enhance imaginative, and narrative based play and includes custom and off the shelf elements. A giant slide, ropes and cable climbing apparatus, swings, nature play and tunnels complete this exciting play experience. 

The design integrates public art by Nuha Saad into key elements in the park, including a strong colour theme patterning the pavement, softfall, disk inlays and giant blocks, tower balustrades and pergola canopy. Sturt Noble worked closely with Nuha and Fleetwood Engineering to provide a cohesive and integrated design outcome. 

A full consultation process was carried out by the City of Sydney and resulted in a wide range of facilities. The demographic of the Waterloo area is very broad but is rapidly changing and the number of residents increasing due to apartment building in the area. As such the park is seen as a valuable opportunity to create recreation opportunities in an area traditionally lacking. 

Designed to be stimulating & visually appealing while activating a range of senses, Sturt Noble Associates have created play spaces providing a variety of experiences and adventures for different age groups and abilities. 

Play spaces are designed to include accessible elements with play designs providing for the development of agility, balance, coordination & strength. All five senses; sight, sound, touch, smell & taste can be stimulated with a variety of play elements, materials, planting & artworks incorporated into play spaces. 

Equipment and activities are positioned within a range of surfaces and spaces forming interesting and adventurous play areas. Integrated planting and level changes form and divide play spaces, creating discrete and separate areas within the playground, allowing for individual & group play activities. Paths are designed to lead children to further play opportunities, often hidden throughout the space. 

Informal play opportunities are created with the use of elements such as large boulders and concrete precast and insitu walls. Paths link play areas, with surfaces of contrasting colours and textures adding to the play experience, with stone, concrete, and rubber softfall providing a variety of both surfaces and colour. 

Seating and quiet areas are incorporated into the play spaces with low retaining walls, boulders and custom seating providing a range of options. 

The design incorporates best-practice sustainability approaches including recycled bricks, mulch and stone being used extensively throughout the project. Planting is primarily native species with low water requirements. Detailing for hardworks including bridges, seating and retaining walls were in robust materials designed with long life cycles and limited maintenance. A “raingarden” was designed to create a feature surrounding a high point or “island” in the northern end of the park connected to Archibald Avenue and associated square by a bridge.