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Frosts Landscape Construction - Commercial landscaping specialists

The Hub - Olympic North Park

The Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park

The Play area has design features for naturalistic play, based on ecological concepts of succession and life cycles, entwined in a riverine landscape flowing around the Timber Lodge café and community hub.

Frosts are delighted to have been presented with two BALI Awards for The Hub, Olympic North Park. Firstly, for the Hard Landscaping Construction (non-domestic, costing over £1.5m) category and secondly, for the Sports Ground and Leisure Facilities category, which are due to be presented at the 2014 BALI Landscaping Awards ceremony in London.

The Lodge and Playground wins a Special Award (Selwyn Goldsmith Award for Universal Design) at the 2014 Civic Awards.

This scheme comprised the creation of a Hub building and play space which are embedded within the landscape setting of the North Parklands within the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park (QEOP). The new building and play landscape create a strong identity, making them memorable and welcoming places, offering play, recreational and learning experiences, serving local residents as well as visitors. The intention is to celebrate the rich ecological heritage of the UK and in particular East London.

The play area consists of willow seed pod dens, pioneer hazel woodland copses that can be explored and children can hunt for bugs and get their hands dirty. The copses lead to a Scots pine forest where bespoke nest-like climbing structures invite high physical activity and offer expansive views of the wider park for those brave enough to accept the challenge. The sand and water play area is inspired by the history of the River Lea and its industrial past. It allows children to become water engineers – encouraging them to work in groups and pump water to dam and divert through the natural rock pools, rivulets and industrial channels, creating splash pools and sand traps along the way.

This complex and challenging design was completed on time and budget to high praise and acclaim from the client, designers, media and users of the space. The project was completed during LLDC’s summer events schedule which severely restricted access, as the site was in the middle of the park. Material deliveries had to be planned and co-ordinated and works scheduled to minimise noise and disruption during events. The novel scheme pushed the boundaries of acceptable play safety, so a full play risk/benefit analysis was undertaken by the designers and ROSPA pre-commencement and we worked closely with both parties through the construction phase and achieved ROSPA accreditation with minimal adjustments being required.

Project details

Apr 2013 – Aug 2013
Main Contractor
Bam Nuttall
Landscape Architect
Erect Architecture and Land Use Consultants