Marshmallow Park – Pezler Park – Pityarilla Activity Hub

Awarded the 2019 Master Landscapers of South Australia Award for Commercial Landscape Construction Project over $1,000,000

What Playandgo.com.au liked about our landscaping:

“Probably the focal point of the park, aside from the iconic Moreton Bay fig tree which provides wonderful shade, is the rock hill with the interactive water play features. Our little playground testers had a great time clambering up and down the rocks and trying out the various water play elements. This provides opportunities for social interaction – and getting really wet and sandy”.

Landscape construction services were responsible for the implementation and construction of the project from construction planning, construction activities through to the final stages of detailed construction.

The project in its broadest sense is a large Community park of some 53,000m2, however, it is much more than this. It is a series of carefully designed natural and created spaces that provide a multitude of active and passive recreation spaces. It provides a strong connection to the wider Adelaide community and the public to play, rest and explore. It is a multigenerational space that can be enjoyed by all ages and cultures.

The project contains a diverse range of recreational facilities and offers a destination for a wide range of users. These elements emerged from stakeholder engagement to include:


Multiple spaces for kids of all ages and abilities to play, explore and challenge themselves in a safe manner have been provided. The core themes are Learning to Play; Playing to Learn and Wild Play.

Facilities range from fully fenced areas with interactive water and sand play, themed cubbies, artworks and climbing elements aimed at toddlers, through creek beds, a super-sized ‘wiltja’ and timber climbing frames for the highly adventurous kids.

The Oxbow Playspace promotes ‘wild play’, wood and rope climbing frames, boulder island and stepping stones encourage kids to get down into the creek and develop their creativity and sense of adventure.

Plaza grass zone

The lush green plaza grass zone is a natural amphitheatre creates a perfect picnic spot and will be used for community events and performances. Site contaminants found during the South Parklands Creek components were integrated into the amphitheatre ensuring no soil was removed from the site.

Courts and Paths

For the more actively minded, and the older visitors there are new and upgraded basketball and tennis courts which are lit at night. Complementing the active nature of the park all the areas can be accessed via extensive cycling and walking paths which also provide connections to the wider parkland.

South Parklands Creek

The South Park Lands Creek is not a natural creek line but an artificial drainage channel that was built almost a century ago. The City of Adelaide developed a ‘Master Plan’, which set out a five-year program of work needed to restore the condition of the Creek to improve its safety; increase its biodiversity, increase its hydraulic flow and assist with reducing the impact flooding in the South Park Lands.

Incorporated into the creek realignment was the use of underground culverts to protect river red gums and rock weirs to slow the water down. Recreational benefits included walking trails along the creek corridor; community interaction with the creek; mounding/seating adjacent sporting fields, and points of interest at intersections with pedestrian and bicycle pathways in the Park Lands.

The Dog Park

The dog parks located at the Northern end of the hub has proven one of the most popular new elements. The site selected for the dog park was former netball courts and a clubhouse amongst significant trees requiring remediation. The layout is the best practice approach and accommodates both large and small dogs in separate off-leash areas with water fountains and water play accessible for both dogs and their owners are particularly popular. Lighting, shelters, planting and seating transformed the site.


Reinforcing the popularity of the park has been a significant upgrade of its facilities including new shade shelters, accessible barbeques and drinking fountains, improved bridge crossings, bike racks and toilets. Services and ample space has also been provided to facilitate attendance at the Park by food vans.

Cost of construction

The total cost for the project was;

Original contract sum $ 3,868.009.81 ex GST This includes 52 weeks of maintenance and establishment across the project.

Final contract sum $ 3,888,766.02 ex GST

This project had a total of $ 20,756.21 ex GST of variations to the contract, which is a testament to the nature of the delivery, with all parties working together to achieve the best result for the project.


Key drivers in the design phase was meaningful engagement with a wide range of key stakeholders ranging from the public, to council staff, local schools and the Kaurna community. It is a truly community-driven outcome driven by the following:

  • 150 people who shared ideas at the open day.
  • 33 kids shared ideas through drawings and models.
  • 1,540 ideas shared through the parklands consultation

Project planning and management.

Project planning and management were undertaken with rigour, tight timeframes and long lead times of structural elements, play equipment and manufacturing times for bespoke items such as the circular bridge were critical planning elements that influenced the delivery of the project.

Original procurement of elements was done before signing the actual contract this was crucial as some of the elements for this project had 26-week lead times.

Temporary construction planning for access across the creek during construction was thought of in advance. Large culverts were installed for machine access across the reconstructed creek were critical to the management of the construction.

Careful construction planning to build across the site took into consideration leaving access for large cranes and machinery to install items such as the central bridge, play elements, large log teepee.

Shop drawings and the management of consultants’ documentation to deliver construction outcomes on the ground was done with careful management and hands-on review with consultants on-site where and when needed.

The project was completed within the 6-month time frame.

Construction excellence and industry best practice.

The ‘Oxbow’ creek was integral to the design to help slow and reduce the water flow through the site. It helped with the wild play area through this zone. Constructed rock weirs within the creek also helped with this while providing informal opportunities to cross and play within the creek zone.

Construction excellence from these types of projects comes from understanding high-level activities such as broad grading of levels, bulk profiling and cut and fill. Down to the detailed construction techniques of placing rockwork, blending design levels with natural areas. Critical installation details, design levels and the high tolerances of these while navigating unknowns such as the large existing fig trees and mature trees and their root profiles.

The general construction of the entire project was completed to industry best practice for these types of large landscape projects.