Blaxland Common Playground is a unique and innovative play space, set on three-hectares overlooking the Parramatta River.
From a design perspective, the focal point of the park is the Giant Swing, a sweeping framework for six swings and a climbing apparatus. Envisioned by the project’s landscape architectural firm, JMD Design, it was to be a single, grand curving beam, supported by creative columns topped by spring-like spirals.
As much sculptural as structural, the swing presented significant mechanical challenges. In fact, its designers were quite concerned that it couldn’t actually be built. With its long sweeping shape, the balancing motion of each individual swing promised difficulty. Especially given the site’s unstable ground.
It was for these very reasons that Fleetwood was awarded the job. The project’s landscapers, Perfection Landscapes, a successful partner of ours, were confident we could bring the design to life.
And we did. We constructed the main curving beam from heavy gauge pipe, which we rolled using specialist equipment. We then formed and detailed the column-top ‘springs’ by hand, and craned and installed the entire structure. This included site welding the columns to main beam (the design specified no visible bolts) and a final layer of paint on-site.
The structure was completed successfully and in a timely manner, and JMD Design have expressed great admiration for the outcome.