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Island Bay Kindergarten

Island Bay, Wellington

Products used:

There’s no denying we like to keep things as natural as possible in the playground. But in some cases this approach just won’t cut it. At Wellington’s Island Bay Kindergarten grass was never going to survive the daily wear and tear of 140 children.

Rob Dunn is the Facilities Manager for Wellington Kindergartens. He oversaw the recent upgrade to Island Bay Kindergarten’s outdoor play area. Rob has 85 centres under his care, so the decision to work with a new product is not one he makes lightly.

Before the playground upgrades, the team at Island Bay Kindergarten struggled to keep the grassed outdoor play area in good condition. In summer it was rock hard. In winter, a mud pit.

“We’d been attempting to go natural but the bottom line is grass just does not handle the wear and tear,” says Rob. “It’s very difficult to cultivate it and use it as a product. So that’s why we went with the synthetic.”

After a fair amount of due diligence from Rob the decision was made to install PermaPlay and PermaTurf products. The PermaPlay replaced old bark and provided a new soft fall surface under the play equipment and swings. PermaTurf was the solution to the struggling grass situation.

For the teachers and children at Island Bay the result is huge. The children can now get outside to play any time of the year, regardless of the weather. And the teachers love the tidy appearance of the playground and its vibrant year-round colour.

But for Rob, there was much more to consider than looks. Any product or company he engages with needs to fulfill criteria around quality control, durability, communication and sourcing.

"We'd been attempting to go natural but the bottom line is grass just does not handle the wear and tear."
Rob Dunn
Facilities Manager for Wellington Kindergartens

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