This is the kind of park that every city needs. An all-in-one, well-designed destination park with a mega playground, splash pad, tennis (for residents only), basketball, trails, outdoor amphitheatre for entertainment, and an outdoor fitness course. Judging by the number of activities planned for this coming year (more on this later) this park and its amenities are going to be well used by the residents of NDIP.
This park is sparkly and new, and officially opened on May 14th, 2016.
I’ll admit to having driven by the park FOUR times last fall while it was under construction. And I don’t live anywhere near it. I’m sure the workers were all “There goes that woman again, driving suuuuuper slowly….”
And while I’d planned on waiting for the weather to be warm enough before visiting to see the splash pad in action, I just couldn’t wait. So on a brilliantly sunny morning in May, we packed our 17 snacks (which weren’t enough) and drove out super early to NDIP so we could take some pictures. And we ended up having the entire place to ourselves. So….we explored, and touched, and jumped, and ran all around the huge park.
There’s a small parking lot beside the playground area just off of Rue de la Rivelaine, with another small lot on Boulevard Virginie Roy near the sanitary building and second washrooms. We parked, and then skipped across the grass to the two large play structures, both of which are on a wood chip base. The firm Tessier Récréo-Parc did a great job with GameTime products and fantastic attention to detail, some unique features, and play structures which are age-appropriate for both toddlers, and older kids needing a challenge.
Separated by a small concrete walkway, it’s quite easy to keep an eye on kids in both play areas, but note that there is neither fencing around the playground or the park itself. There are plenty of benches and picnic tables scattered throughout the park, and some tables are wheelchair accessible.
We started at the toddler climber where we checked out the slides, the “bird nest” pod, climbed up the stairs and travelled across the bridge, and then spun the ground-level wheel and searched for the various images throughout the equipment. “Windmill?” “Found it!”
I vetoed crawling through the crawl tube myself, lest I get stuck, and opted to go up the climbing wall instead. I think that was a smart move. Just beside the climber are the swings, but for such a large park there aren’t all that many. There are two big-kid swings, one baby swing and one adaptive swing (which I was happy to see). And I’ll be nit picky, but I would love to have seen some spring riders, or a ground level playhouse as not all little kids like climbing.
Then we scampered (I walked) to the large climber with it’s myriad of ladders, rings, GIANT slides, and climbing apparatus. Lots of challenging and intricate ways to go across and up, and again, some great attention to detail. The little guy sat in the stacked rings and pretended to be a bird. So after “feeding” him some worms, we hightailed it to the ROOF of the chalet with its rooftop garden and had a fantastic view of the splash pad, the tennis and basketball courts, and the outdoor concert area below us.
The splash pad has a beautifully painted concrete base by Tennis Mapa Inc., and water features from Pointe-Claire’s Vortex Aquatic Structures. With benches and tables surrounding the play area, and an open-sided shelter, this is going to be a great spot to cool off after a morning of playing. There are tall cat tails, spinning flowers, water cannons and a turnable sail (complete with NDIP’s logo 🙂 )
Note that there is no fencing around the splash pad area.
Steps away is the bright and modern chalet which has its opening hours posted on the door. I took pictures of the summer and fall hours signs, they’re in the picture gallery.
NOTE: MAY 2017. The splash pad is already OPEN and the hours are 9am-8pm daily.
We did a little walk around, saw the water retention basin, visited the older itty-bitty playground on Boulevard Virginie Roy and adjacent to the soccer field, and then stared up at the large dedicated graffiti wall.
Before leaving we
tried out looked at the TrekFit outdoor fitness stations which are placed near the hockey rink and run next to the road. Each station has an information panel explaining the different exercises.
You can see the original park plans on THIS PAGE, though the placement of the different items in the final design are somewhat changed.
There are tons of activities such as the Shack-Ados, outdoor training sessions, concerts and more going on at the park in 2017. You can read the summer schedule HERE.
|Toddler park (2-5)||✓|
|Fenced toddler park|
|Big kid park (5-12)||✓|
|Big kid swings||✓|
|Reduced mobility swings||✓|