Surrounded by nature’s beauty, this parkour obstacle for teens offers engaging fitness challenges that blend with the nearby landscape.

Using natural elements of an organic nature, this parkour course is an inviting challenge to big kids everywhere and a welcome addition to Mindarie Park. Set in the bushland setting of Lane Cove, Mindarie Park is a multi-use recreational greenspace under the aegis of Lane Cove Council, recently opened after undergoing a two-stage upgrade to provide the community with a variety of sports and play opportunities to enjoy.

Encompassed within the park is an all-inclusive playground that meets NSW Government’s Everyone Can Play guidelines, a large turf area, amphitheatre and a multi-use games arena. Picnic shelters, barbecues, drinking fountains and accessible picnic settings can also be found. But one of its biggest drawcards is its nature-inspired parkour course.

Designed and constructed by Timber Creations Nature Play, the Mindarie Park timber and rope obstacle course sits alongside the playground, filling an often overlook role in recreation spaces. While most playscapes offer equipment for children from toddlers to primary school-aged kids, older children and teenagers often don’t get a look in. Providing an activity space that challenges this demographic is an important part of catering to the whole community.

The Mindarie Park playspace was constructed to present more advanced challenges to teens, as well as include a safe ‘hangout’ space that would appeal to the older age group. In addition, its natural structure offers a much-needed link to the bushland that surrounds the playground, connecting the more formal community spaces to the natural landscape in a way that creates harmony in the bushland setting.

Using local, sustainably sourced, recycled timber to create beautiful and functional play pieces for decades, Timber Creations Nature Play were the natural choice to design and construct the Mindarie Park parkour course.

Natural shapes and interesting textures were selected to achieve the harmonious environment Council desired, while also serving to create focal points that would draw users into the space. Organic twists and turns increase the challenge factor of the structures, while bumps and knots in the timber increase visual dimension and up the difficulty level required to balance and climb, thereby increasing users’ adaptation and dexterity abilities.

Placed within the scheme, a lookout tower provides an enticing gathering space for groups and a clever vantage point for looking out over the landscape. A peaceful corner to retreat to when needed in the busy park, the lookout tower has become a popular perch for many.

Created from several stunning pieces of salvaged timber rescued from various local sites, a series of flexible seating structures and balancing play pieces also dot the space. Timber logs up to 10 metres in length were made playground-safe and consciously placed to create a direct pathway to the connecting bushland, while others serve as sustainable seating options.

With environmental responsibility being a key focus for Lane Cove Council, Mindarie Park playspace is a fully sustainable project. Timber Creations exclusively utilised rescued and recycled timber, handworking the natural materials with minimal machine intervention. Finished in natural oils, the structures, once broken down and disposed of at their end-of-life use, will return to an organic state and be environmentally safe for disposal.

To complete the parkour course and continue the ‘natural’ theme of the project, certified softfall mulch was spread at the base of the timber structures to provide impact absorption and ensure an even activity surface. In addition, Timber Creations constructed a retaining wall from logs and sandstone blocks of differing levels, which hold the mulch in place without the need for mass excavation and add to the play value of the space by making a fun balancing circuit. A great feature for kids of all ages and abilities, the wall not only gives younger kids something to do while in the activity space, but also serves as seating, or even a makeshift table, adding extra amenity to the space that works for supervising parents and carers — making it truly a space for everyone.


Lane Cove Council
Location Lane Cove, NSW
Landscape Architect Elise Newman, Lane Cove Council
Site Preparation Get Civil
Softfall Mulch The Hills Bark Blower
Playspace Design & Construct Timber Creations Nature Play
Retaining Wall Timber Creations Nature Play
Photography Stephen Govel Photography

Timber Creations Nature Play

Send Enquiry To Andrew Smith Timber Creations Pty Ltd