12 October 2020
Installation of a new toilet block will begin today to complement the play space known as Taikākā in Government Gardens.
The community have been keen to see a wharepaku (toilet) at this playground for a number of years and the new block has been designed to reflect the playground, the environment and the wildlife in the park.
Kereama Taepa, an artist who spent time teaching creative technologies at Toi Ohomai in Rotorua, took inspiration from his experiences visiting the park with his children and finding birds around the gardens. His design features two birds – a tui and a kōkako.
The aramoana pattern layered over the birds references the lake and everything that lives within it. The design is created to resemble the tukutuku stitching of the turapa panels.
The installation of the toilet at Taikākā is part of Council’s work set out in the 2018 – 2028 Long-term Plan to upgrade parks and reserves infrastructure to meet the community’s needs.
Work to install the block will take approximately five weeks with general tidy up work and landscaping to follow.
A small portion of the parking area will be closed during the construction period but the play spaces will remain open.
Taikākā is Rotorua’s first bilingual playground and was refurbished and opened in June 2018. The initiative is part of Rotorua Reorua (Bilingual Rotorua) which was launched in August 2017 and is being led by Council’s partner, Te Tatau o Te Arawa.
The playground promotes te reo Māori using signage as well as digital games and stories.