Rawson community celebrates opening of skatepark, rec and RV area
Published on 07 December 2021
The Rawson community has turned out in numbers to mark the official opening of a dynamic new skate park, multi-play recreation space and recreational vehicle (RV) parking area in the heart of their town.
Even the rain couldn’t dampen local enthusiasm as Mayor of Baw Baw Shire Cr Michael Leaney, Member for Eastern Victoria, Harriet Shing MP, Councillors and Council officers, representatives of Regional Development Victoria (RDV), local members of the project reference group, and excited Rawson residents celebrated the official opening on Monday afternoon.
The transformed precinct provides a space for people of all ages to come together and have fun and be active. The space includes:
- A variety of skate park ramps, rails and elements
- A tennis hit up wall
- A three-point line basketball court
- Picnic tables, shelter and seating
- Drinking fountains
- Disability compliant walkways
- Landscaping, embankments and plantings
- Grassed kickabout area
- An additional car and RV parking area.
The $484,173 project was delivered by Baw Baw Shire Council in partnership with Regional Development Victoria, with RDV contributing $322,782 and Council contributing $161,391 through its 2020/21 Capital Works Program.
On working with Council on the project, local dad and Project Reference Group member Liam Doyle said, “It’s been good actually. It’s felt like we’ve been able to have a say in how it’s all come together. Through the group we ended up basically helping design the concept of the park: we want a rail, a little half-pipe, etc.
“It’s great for the community. The kids have been looking for something to do a lot of the time and this is just what they needed. As soon as it was built and we were allowed in, the kids wanted to come here every single day.”
Long-time local and mum Tanya Nelson agrees. “My son loves it,” she says. “He’d be up here every day if he could. I’m so happy to see it happen. I’ve been a local here for a very long time and it’s great for the kids to have something to do up here. This is fantastic. It’s a great little park. The kids just love it.”
Following the formal proceedings, GippSport Streetgames turned up the tunes and led basketball activities on the half-court, while youths of all ages took to the skatepark after the rain to test their skills on the new facilities.
Project works were completed in early October and the site has been accessible to the public since. However, due to the disruptions caused by COVID-19, the formal opening was postponed to allow the opportunity for all key stakeholders to attend and be acknowledged in person.
The Rawson Skate Park and RV Parking Area project is a welcomed economic boost for the region’s tourism economy, particularly in the far east of the Shire after a challenging period affected by bushfires, floods and COVID-19 restrictions.
Quote attributable to Mayor Cr Michael Leaney
“This multi-play recreation space in the heart of Rawson offers the community the perfect outdoor space to gather with family, stay active and socialise all throughout the year.
A significant amount of planning and consultation went into the development of this project to ensure the needs and expectations of the local community were met.
We thank all the project partners for their contributions. It’s fantastic to be able to work together to deliver such a great asset for the Rawson region.”
Image: Member for Eastern Victoria Harriet Shing MP and Mayor Cr Michael Leaney.
Image: Baw Baw Shire CEO Mark Dupe, Mayor Cr Michael Leaney, Harriet Shing MP, Rawson resident Mackenzie Doyle and Regional Development Victoria, Regional Director Sara Rhodes-Ward cutting the ribbon.
Image: GippsSport Streetgames hosting basketball activities on the court.
Image: Rawson residents Kash, Liam and Mackenzie Doyle enjoying the skatepark.
Image: Project Reference Group members Jenny Schembri, Carol Asbock, Tiffany Moore, Liam Doyle, Jamison Asbock, Steve Asbock, Harriet Shing MP, Mayor Michael Leaney and his dog, Tilly.