Osprey Waters

Bridgewater North, Mandurah

THE PLACE: Located on the banks of the Peel Harvey Estuary and surrounded by Abbotswood wetland the, Osprey Waters is a 470 lot subdivision that has evolved from a number of physical & environmental constraints. This site is surrounded by significant wetland environments and through the navigation of required setbacks and over-land floods the allocation of the 10% POS began to evolve and resulted in the consolidation of POS along the foreshore edge. Retention of existing trees and catering for wildlife including the resident Osprey (birds) and its habitat were a high priority while designing along the foreshore frontage and recognising the potential of the site was the key to the ultimate popularity of this foreshore public open space.

OUR ROLE: As the Project Landscape Architects, Emerge Associates identified ensuring there was still open and designated access to the water as a key draw card to the area. In consultation with the City of Mandurah and after mapping the current estuary uses, Emerge located key nodes along the length of the foreshore that would be designated access points to the water for the public and all connected by a dual-use path through the existing trees. In doing this, the remainder of the foreshore edge was revegetated and protected.

The Foreshore was envisaged as a destination park, it was important that the users of the foreshore were provided with opportunities to stay for extended periods of time and accommodate larger gatherings. Along with plaza and picnic amenities, providing light craft launch facilities and crab and fishing stations along the estuary were important to allow previous uses of the site to continue, with controlled intervention to protect the foreshore flora and fauna.

OUTCOMES: Osprey Waters Foreshore has become an extremely popular location for both residents and visitors alike. The play space is nestled amongst the existing large retained trees which gives the playground an instant impact while also referencing users to its location on the Mandurah Estuary. It was decided early that any timber cleared for civil works shall be re-purposed.  This timber was upcycled to construct main play structure as well as seating and stepping logs.  The main lookout structure is designed to reflect the Osprey nest, this creates viewing opportunities across the Mandurah Estuary. Elevated platforms, Sensory planting, exploration maze, natural seating nodes and spaces for all abilities. Utilising the local material palate the playground nestles neatly under the trees with the estuary framing the view.

Focusing the pubic open space along the foreshore and creating lineal parks within the estate has allowed retention of over 270 trees creating instant amenity and to continue to provide critical habitat for a number of conservation significant fauna species including Carnaby’s Black Cockatoo, Rainbow Bee-eater and Osprey.

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