Residents Vote on New Outdoor Gym Design in Coley

READING Council is inviting residents to vote on their preferred design for a new outdoor gym at Coley Recreation Ground.

Coley Recreation Ground in west Reading has been earmarked for a £65K investment.

The new gym will be designed to offer free fitness for all and will offer a mix of robust equipment to suit people of varying ages and abilities. It will offer both single and multi-use units as well as equipment for seated and standing users.

The Council has invited a number of specialist outdoor gym equipment manufacturers to submit proposed design ideas for the new outdoor gym which will be used to consult with local residents and school children.

St Mary & All Saints Primary School in Coley Park will be displaying the shortlisted designs. Children at the school will use ballot boxes and voting slips to choose their preferred option between 4th and 18th June.

The designs, will be available for the public to view and vote on at St Mary and All Saints Primary School and at Coley Park Community Centre from Tuesday 4th June to Tuesday 18th June.

The designs, alongside a description of what they offer, can also be viewed and voted for online, with any comments, until Tuesday 18th June at www.reading.gov.uk/coleygym

The winning design will be announced on Monday 24th June. It is anticipated that the work will start on site in September 2019 and ready for use by the half term week in October.

Cllr Karen Rowland, Reading’s Lead Member for Culture, Heritage and Recreation, said: “We know that parks are one of the most valued amenities in Reading.

“It is one of our key priorities that we provide high quality, accessible equipment in as many of our parks as possible.  This is an exciting and worthwhile investment and will benefit large numbers local people for years to come – offering and encouraging free fitness opportunities for all.

“I’m delighted that we are able to put such a significant sum into Coley Recreation Ground and I’m really pleased we’ve been able to engage local school children in voting for their favourite design. I’d encourage local residents to check out our shortlisted designs at St Mary and All Saints Primary School and at Coley Park Community Centre or online at www.reading.gov.uk/coleygym where you can vote and comment on the designs.”

Funding for playground improvements across the borough have been secured by the Council from developers who made a contribution to the Council’s Community Infrastructure Fund.  Reading communities were consulted last summer on how money collected from local planning developments should be spent. The top ranked schemes, including Coley Recreation Ground in west Reading, were approved at the Council’s Policy Meeting on 26th November 2018

Policy Committee agreed that £65,000K be invested to improve Coley Recreation Ground.

Other Playground investment agreed includes:

·        £100K – Canal Way (replacing Avon Place play area)

·        £100K – Ivydene play area, located next to Portman Road

·        £95K – Cintra Park, south Reading

·        £155K – Long Barn Lane Recreation Ground

In addition to the investment for leisure and play from the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) – the contribution developers, that has benefited Coley Recreation Ground, the work complements the Council’s wider 2.7M boost for Reading’s parks and playgrounds which is part of the Council’s capital investment programme over the next 3 years.

Just over £1.6 million will contribute to the expansion, replacement or upgrading of playground equipment in parks and play areas across the borough. With a focus on areas in most need of new equipment and a big drive on providing accessible equipment for children of all abilities, particularly in areas where there is little provision for children with disabilities.

Reading’s two main parks, Prospect Park and Palmer Park, are priorities for improvements to play equipment, including the provision or replacement of obsolete equipment for children with disabilities.  Park users and local residents will be consulted on the type of equipment they want to see.

Ends

Notes

Photocall: The media are invited to a photo opportunity on Monday 10th June, at 10am in the Coley Park Community Centre.

View the full Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) report : https://democracy.reading.gov.uk/ieListDocuments.aspx?CId=138&MId=1840&Ver=4

View the capital investment programme here: https://democracy.reading.gov.uk/ieListDocuments.aspx?CId=138&MId=1842

The Outdoor Gym Designs can be viewed at the following location dates and times:

·         Tuesday 4th June, 10am-1pm at the Coley Park Community Centre

·         Thursday 6th June, 10-4pm at the Coley Park Community Centre

·         Monday 10th June, 10-1pm at the Coley Park Community Centre & at St Mary & All Saints School (opening hours)

·         Tuesday 11th June, 10-1pm at the Coley Park Community Centre & at St Mary & All Saints School (opening hours)

·         Wednesday 12 June, 10-1pm at St Mary & All Saints School opening hours

·         Thursday 13th June, 10am-4pm at Coley Park Community Centre, & at St Mary & All Saints School (opening hours)

·         Friday 14th June at St Mary & All Saints School (opening hours)

·         Saturday 15th June, 10-2pm at the Coley Park Community Centre

·         Monday 17th June, 10-1pm at the Coley Park Community Centre

·         Tuesday 18th June, 10-1pm at the Coley Park Community Centre

 

Victoria Nickless

For media enquiries about this release email victoria.nickless@reading.gov.uk or call 0118 937 3957