Renarta Whitcombe, Enakai Wason, (four) and Elese Leo enjoy the shade at one of the new picnic tables at Rigarlsford Park, Elphinstone St, Koongal.
Renarta Whitcombe, Enakai Wason, (four) and Elese Leo enjoy the shade at one of the new picnic tables at Rigarlsford Park, Elphinstone St, Koongal. Sharyn O'Neill

Spotlight shines on Koongal's park

RENARTA Whitcombe met up with friends at Rigarlsford Park in Koongal yesterday for a belated present swap.

It was the first time she'd been there, but the chances are high she'll be back once her baby arrives.

"It's a very nice park, just right for kids," she said.

"I like all the shade and there's plenty of seating."

What she didn't know was that the park had just become the first in the region to benefit from spotlights that will allow people to enjoy its playground, picnic shelters and walking tracks until 11pm each night.

There are four new electric barbecues, too, which visitors will be able to use right up to 9pm.

"It's an interesting idea," said Renarta, who lives in Norman Gardens.

"Very different."

Cr Tony Williams said yesterday he would closely monitor the late evening use of the park.

"I thought an 11pm switch off of the lights might be too late, but we'll see how that goes and listen to what the locals say."

He said he hoped the illumination would help to solve problems of anti-social behaviour that had previously plagued the park.

"This is what the public wanted and as a council we are now looking for people to take ownership of it and make sure there's no vandalism. It really would be a shame if people didn't look after it."

About $450,000 has been spent on upgrading the park and Cr Williams thinks there will have to be some more.

"The playground is in great shape but I think we need to look at installing shade covers over the equipment. It's a bit too hot during the day."

There are three walking tracks, ranging in length from 800 metres to 1.4 kilometres, and a variety of exercise equipment.

Cr Williams said there would be an official opening early in the New Year.



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