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It’s a Small world after all

Let’s hear it for the kids! While once they might have been seen but not heard, children are now among the highest priorities for Sydney’s builders.

July 13, 2012 - PRLog -- Let’s hear it for the kids! While once they might have been seen but not heard, children are now among the highest priorities for Sydney’s builders.

In what’s been billed as an Australian first, youngsters from a school close to a master-planned development have been consulted by Stockland on what they would like to see at the complex.

Some of their answers proved complete surprises. ‘‘One of the
most important things to them was how people moved on the pathways
through the community,’’ says a project leader, professor Karen Malone, who works at the University of Western Sydney’s Centre for Educational Research and is the chair woman of the Child-Friendly Asia-Pacific Network.

‘‘They wanted to know how people get from A to B; what are the interesting things along the journey.

‘‘And they also wanted secret and shady places for cubby building . . . and a play area where they could create their own space.’’

As a result, Brooks Reach http://www.stockland.com.au/home-and-land/nsw/brooks-reac..., at Horsley in the Illawarra, has been designed as a truly family- and child friendly estate. The results have proved popular for buyers with young families: 45 of the 60 lots in the first online release sold in four seconds.

‘‘We thought we’d go straight to children to see what they thought was important,’’ says the senior development manager for multiple projects at Stockland, Michael Braithwaite. ‘‘There were some crazy ideas . . . but most were very useful.’’

Other developers are also keen to woo buyers who have children. At
Rosebery Park, nearly one-third of the 3.2-hectare, 535-apartment estate will be devoted to recreational space, including a jungle gym, a basketball court and a 25-metre pool.

Similarly, at SekisuiHouse’s The Waterfront at Wentworth Point, The weekly children’s playgroup, Kids’ Spot, has a fortnightly jumping castle as well as play, crafts and song time.

Sydney’s largest master-planned estate by far is the 640-hectare Sydney Olympic Park, of which the greater part is public space, with child-friendly facilities such as a skateboard park and mini golf.

Meanwhile, in Ryde, the new $535 million 790-house Putney Hill is coming to life on the former site of the Royal Rehabilitation Centre.

The FrasersProperty development has the 2.4-hectare Lardelli Park, which has a playground and pond. Its first apartment release, Figtree Apartments, was launched last month and is already 60 per cent sold.

‘‘A lot of our buyers are couples with children, so the open space, park and playground have proved attractive,’’ says the chief executive of Frasers, Guy Pahor.

Brooks Reach will release 20 more lots next week, with land from $148,000 and house-and-land packages from about $350,000. Construction is due to be finished in 2014. Phone 4260 8956, see brooksreach.com.au.

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