Seaforth, a picturesque town on the Coral Sea Coast, located just 50 minutes north of Mackay, has recently witnessed a significant transformation —the Seaforth Esplanade Reserve. This revitalisation project, completed as part of the Seaforth Esplanade Master Plan in 2020, was guided by two primary community values: the scenic beauty of the Esplanade and the importance of creating lasting memories, fostering family gatherings, and offering enjoyable holiday experiences.
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The renovation of the Seaforth Esplanade focused on several key aspects, with the swimming enclosure taking centre stage. Enhancements included new public amenities, modern change rooms, convenient shelters, BBQ facilities, seating areas, and the addition of a Changing Place facility, ensuring accessibility for all.
The former wading pool, which had become unserviceable, was creatively replaced with a zero-depth water play area leading into a tidal pond area, artfully themed around coral gardens, marine life inherent to the Seaforth Coastline and rock pools, providing a refreshing and interactive aquatic experience.
The installation of the aquatics side of the water play, a pivotal component of this comprehensive redevelopment, was executed with precision and expertise by the Playscape Creations installation team. Renowned for their specialisation in handling intricate and complex projects, the team effectively achieved the technical resolution of water cycling and treatment. Given the presence of wading birds on the site, an additional layer of care was incorporated into the process. The water used in the play area is systematically drained and stored in tanks when not in use, preventing any potential impact on the natural habitat.
Furthermore, in response to Council’s specific request for the Seaforth Esplanade, Aquatic One skilfully implemented a “tidal” effect in the wading pool, allowing for the simulation of natural ebbs and flows. This not only adds a dynamic and engaging element to the water play but also aligns seamlessly with the broader theme of the Esplanade Reserve redevelopment.
The recent switch by Mackay Water to chlorine gas as a treatment method brought about its own set of considerations. To accommodate this change, a dosing facility was established separately from the existing plant room. This strategic adjustment ensures the efficient and precise administration of chlorine, contributing to the overall safety and maintenance of the water play area.
In addition, the upgrade to Seaforth Esplanade introduced separate play areas designed for both junior and senior age groups, each inspired by the joy of seaside holidays and catering to various abilities.
What adds a special touch to this redevelopment is the delightful Kombi design featured in the junior playground area. The inspiration behind this design pays homage to the caravan park located on the Esplanade, providing the entire project with a lively, summer holiday vibe.
The community played a vital role in shaping this transformation. Various concepts for the play and water areas were presented to the locals, including the enthusiastic participation of Seaforth State School students and staff. A collaborative design process involving the council, JFP Urban Consultants, Playscape Creations, Atlantis Liquid Dynamics, Aquatic One, and WEBB Australia resulted in a fully coordinated and resolved design.
In September 2023, the park and water play areas were officially opened, marking the realisation of this ambitious project. The Seaforth Esplanade Reserve now stands as a testament to community collaboration and a commitment to preserving the region’s scenic beauty, fostering cherished memories, and providing enjoyable play experiences for all.