This popular Sydney park is getting a refresh to help it serve the community for many years to come thanks to Andrew Smith Timber Creations.
One of Sydney’s best playgrounds has been leading the way for over a decade, demonstrating environmentally responsible and cost-effective design, along with non-prescriptive, engaging play for all ages. Now, Lizard Log Park is getting a freshen-up which will help it serve the community for many more years, while maintaining its natural roots (or trunks)!
Back in 2009, when Andrew Smith Timber Creations was just starting out, they were given the opportunity to be part of an incredible project. The playground was designed by Fiona Robbé Landscape Architects for the Western Sydney Parkland Trust, and was a ground-breaking proposal. Two Grey Box trees that had been part of the parklands for an estimated 80 years were progressively dying and had been condemned for removal - but were destined to be the basis of the new playspace.
The original play elements at Lizard Log
Andrew Smith was engaged for his unique skillset – a deep understanding of Australian timbers, carpentry and child development. The dying trees would be taken and returned with a new life as play equipment, in the very place they had grown.
This was the start of the Timber Creations journey; and over a decade later, after immense success and multiple national awards, the company has returned to Lizard Log to bring in a new era of play.
The smaller branches of the original Grey Box have gradually degraded as natural timber should. As natural timber softens slowly, rather than splitting and forming sharp edges, this area of the playground has never shut for safety reasons over the many years. The replacement of these pieces comes well before any potential breakages could occur and now the old play equipment can biodegrade naturally, breaking down into earth with no waste.
Once again utilising rescued timber, the smaller play pieces have been replaced with new challenges, working together with the huge old pieces of the original Grey Box trunks. These old pieces of timber are greyed and aged but create a stunning play opportunity and a beautiful story, after millions of feet have sanded them smooth over the years.
Treated only with a natural oil, the new pieces will eventually fade and blend naturally with the older pieces and the surrounding environment. There is an updated balance challenge for children, adults, and dog-walkers to enjoy, plus some new goodies such as a rocking lizard and a new lizard play sculpture to replace the sadly aged, iconic namesake Lizard Log itself! There is also a stick cubby hideout with adorable log windows for photo ops.
The revitalised playground will be open soon.