Yokine Regional Inclusive Play Space


Recipient: AECOM

Client: City of Stirling

Project team: 

  • Fiona Robbe Landscape Architect (Collaborator)
  • Dr Kate Bishop (Children's special needs consultant)
  • Warwick Donnely (Structural Design)
  • Architects of Arcadia (Architectural Input)
  • Exceed Consulting (Playground standards compliance)
  • Paperbark Technologies (Aboriculture advice)
  • City of Stirling Officers
  • Earthcare (Main landscape contractor)

Project address: Yokine regional open space, Wordsworth Avenue WA 6060


This project achieves inclusive play outcomes by allowing children of varying physical, emotional and psychological abilities to access play experiences together. A children’s special needs consultant formed part of the team to assist in developing inclusive play outcomes.

Our philosophy was to provide clear graduated challenges for users of varying ability and ages to play together within well-defined zones. Features include:

  • Integrated fence with double gated entry corrals
  • Continuous and well-ordered paths linking zones
  • Way finding colour and luminance cues, site markers and plant cues to help users to navigate the playground
  • Accessible sand and water play area
  • Sensory play: musical instruments and sensory trail
  • Diverse graduated balancing, swinging, rocking, climbing, sliding and spinning experiences
  • Loose parts/imaginary play provided as sand, bark/sticks/nuts and water play spaces
  • imaginative bespoke mythical creatures and curious items
  • Spaces for respite, watching, and working up to a challenge
  • Teen focused zone with multi-sport space, giant swing, hangout spaces and parkour elements (future construction stage)
  • Accessible support facilities; barbeques, backed benches, picnic tables, drinking fountains, toilets, off-path space for strollers and wheelchairs, parking (including for special needs groups) etc.
  • Kiosk/Café overlooking the play space (future construction stage - a zone for coffee/food van has been provided in the interim)

Community of Play

Research into inclusive play provision across the City was undertaken to help inform a structured hierarchy of play space provision. This is addressed by the CoS POS Strategy, which helped define the form and function of the Yokine play space. The design was further informed by the Yokine ROS Master Plan which identifies various zones for differentiated recreation activity across the large reserve.


The project team led a stakeholder engagement process including workshops with more than 25 organisations including the Disability Services Commission and the adjacent Sir David Brand School. Mail-outs to local residents were carried out for feedback at several times during the 5 year life of the project and feedback considered for incorporation in the design development. Numerous presentations and reports were provided to sub-committees to ensure Councilor buy-in and feedback. Public art installations were also commissioned to engender greater community ownership.


Not only are we respecting and protecting the natural environment. We are celebrating it and encouraging a new generation of kids (and their parents/carers) to reconnect with nature and thereby increasing their perceived value of nature. Sustainability features include:

  • Highly durable materials and construction techniques/detailing increasing longevity and reducing maintenance
  • Using products with low embodied energy and minimal whole-of-life impacts e.g. timber, stone, mulch, “decomposed local gravels
  • Renewable and sustainable timber sourcing
  • Use of recycled materials e.g. ropes, logs
  • Natural materials used in preference to steel, plastic and aluminium
  • Low volume innovative use of water for play (timer switch and runnels to slow water flow)
  • Additional tree planting and extensive garden bed planting to reduce heat and improve air and water quality
  • Passive irrigation and treatment of stormwater drainage
  • Sensitive soil management and reuse practices
  • Sensitive structural detailing and construction methods (sand sucking) around remnant trees