Small Ideas: $10,000

Description

Our idea is to redesign the recreational space next to Wolfville School and transform it into a vibrant community Activity Park in the spirit of enhancing community health. It will be a distinctive recreational resource that significantly improves the fitness and recreation options for a diverse broad spectrum of the population: 325+ students at Wolfville School, parents of students, and 7000+ town residents, comprised of a significant number of seniors and university students.

Wolfville School has reached the end of an extensive renovation, and now has a building that is as modern and impressive as any in the province. Unfortunately, the playground facilities have not kept pace with the school upgrades. The existing core of play structures have served the school well, but are now 20 years old, degrading quickly, and do not adequately meet the needs of the school.

The facilities will be accessible to people of all ages and abilities, and will appeal to those interested in both team and individual activities. They are designed to make better use of the available space, adding modern play structures, hard surface courts, fitness stations, incorporating landscaping, and natural structures, to make physical fitness inviting and enjoyable for all. Not only are the proposed facilities a potential resource for the school phys-ed curriculum, but also established community programs such as Acadia Active Aging, the Acadia/Wolfville Active Kids Exercise Program, or after school programs provided by the town.

Phase I of this project, previously completed, involved replacing the dirt soccer field with a hard surface Futsal soccer court (the first of its kind in the province).

Phase II and III will replace the aging play structures with a Primary – 3 structure (25+ student capacity), a grades 4 – 8 structure (40+ student capacity), more swings, and include features that are not currently found in Wolfville (rope towers, spinners, etc.). The surrounding grounds will be landscaped and filled with a variety of smaller fitness and play structures, some using natural elements like logs and boulders, to encourage people of all ages to be active. The fitness structures were selected after consultation with the Acadia University Kinesiology Department.

A main goal is to make the Activity Park space accessible and inviting to a wider range of students and community members, including people of varying ages, genders, and abilities. It will be designed to be more accessible and enjoyable for people in wheelchairs. The protective surfacing and pathways will be wheelchair accessible, enabling access to play equipment and many elements of the natural landscaping. Both the proposed spinner and Primary+ play structure have accessible features. Accessible swings, activity panels, games and musical instruments are also included in the design.

Our town is rich with trails and green space, but it lacks outdoor playground and fitness infrastructure; the Activity Park can bridge the existing gap. It is located in the heart of our town centre, and is equidistant from several senior living facilities, affordable housing, the Acadia student population, and well established neighbourhoods that consist of a mix of all generations from new families to empty nesters. On any given evening or weekend, people are drawn to this location, whether it’s kids using the existing equipment, people riding bikes, or playing basketball and soccer. We are committed to providing a unique quality space that appeals to an even larger portion of our town and neighbouring communities. It is surprising for some to hear that year after year Wolfville consistently measures childhood poverty rates between 20%-25%. With the rising costs of extracurricular activities, this statistic highlights the need to create a free accessible resource with a breadth of recreation options to provide a fun, active lifestyle opportunity regardless of socioeconomic factors.

Broker supported
MACLEOD LORWAY FINANCIAL GROUP LIMITED
SALVATORE INSURANCE BROKERS LTD.
A.A.MUNRO INSURANCE BROKERS INC.

Annapolis Valley Regional Centre for Education

Location: Wolfville