A frustrated father of young children has slammed council's approach to an out-of-action playground at a Highlands playing field.
Paul Samulski said that he believed an Adventure Park listed on the Retford Park Planning Agreement post exhibition period, that was released in August 2016 was a "sweetener for sales".
He said it was an important factor in his decision to buy land in the Retford Park Estate.
The Planning Agreement identifies the proposed establishment of an Adventure Park in the vicinity of the hard court to the west of the existing David Wood Playing Fields and at the back (northern end of the existing car park.
The agreement suggests the proposed facility would include:
- a single flying fox off a raised launching area, rope climbing playground and a viewing tower with rope bridge to the slide area
- a climbing wall
- centralised parental observation zone with shelter and picnic area
- group spinning roundabout
- synthetic grass climbing mounds at different angles and slopes
- a swing set
- a dedicated 4-6 years play area close to the parent shelters and fenced for security
The planning agreement further identified that the existing playground on the edge of the existing playing fields would be converted to purpose built fitness stations.
A council spokesman recently told the Southern Highland News that $200,000 had been paid by the Retford Park developer under the Voluntary Planning Agreement (VPA).
They said the funds had been set aside to 'Embellish' David Wood playing fields, playground improvements and extension of the car park.
"This means the monies are to go towards upgrading or improving the existing facilities," he said.
"The playground is currently closed due to safety issues.
"The soft-fall surface is being replaced."
The spokesman said a contractor had been engaged with works scheduled to start in July.
Mr Samulski, who has two children aged 10 and 13, said that one of the reasons he purchased in the Retford Park Estate was the proposed facilities, such as the Adventure Park, identified in the planning agreement.
He said he believed such a facility should be a requirement in every new, larger estate in the Wingecarribee Shire.
"I think developers should be required to set aside sufficient funds for such facilities," he said.
"Developer contributions should not be used only for fixing facilities in disrepair."
Mr Samulski said that the current playground adjacent to David Wood Playing Field had been closed since "the third quarter of last year."
"That is not good enough," he said.
"It is too long to wait for a soft fall area to be repaired."
Mr Samulski said that while smaller playgrounds were great, there was also a need for Adventure Parks similar to one in the Renwick Estate and in several estates in the Wollondilly and Camden shires.
"You can't expect young families to move to a new residential area and not provide quality outdoor play areas," he said.
"As a father of young children, that is very clear to me."