Instant Download of Documents and Procedures for the Australian Building and Construction Industry to assist Developers, Builders, Tradespeople and Owner Builders.


Public Open Spaces

What is Public Open Space?

There are many different types of public open space:

  • National parks, regional parks, district parks, neighbourhood parks, local parks and pocket parks
  • Playgrounds, skate parks, fitness circuits
  • Community gardens, sensory gardens, healing gardens, botanic gardens
  • Wetlands, reserves and wildlife corridors
  • School campuses, university campuses and hospital grounds
  • Waterways and foreshores

It’s important for communities to maintain a variety of public open spaces in order to meet a range of recreational needs. Parks should offer respite from busy urban streets. They should provide opportunities for active and noisy recreation and quiet places for peace and contemplation. Play equipment, fitness facilities, open lawns and shaded areas are all important elements of public open space.

Public open space functions as the lungs of a city, lowering pollution and reducing the heat island effect. Former industrial areas can be reclaimed and regenerated to provide open space for people and wildlife.

Why is Public Open Space beneficial?

Studies show that green space in cities can improve mental health, cognitive function and fitness levels. Well-designed public open space can also raise property values.

An Open Space design creates quality outdoor areas where children can play safely. Playground design is subject to strict legislation and CPTED requirements, but a good designer can work within these constraints to create places of excitement, wonder, adventure, risk taking, learning, energy and expression.

A good designer will have a thorough understanding of horticulture, ecology, habitat, landform and heritage, which combine to create quality open space.