A sod turning event at the Green Point Park marked the commencement of the creation of the Experiential Educational Garden (EEG).
On 13 March 2020, Alderman Marian Nieuwoudt, the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Spatial Planning and Environment, and Alderman James Vos, the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Economic Opportunities and Asset Management, attended a sod turning event at the Green Point Park to mark the commencement of the creation of the Experiential Educational Garden (EEG). The EEG is an initiative of these two City departments.
Green Point Park (GPP) is a very popular park and forms part of the Cape Town stadium precinct. Sadly due to COVID-19 restrictions, the park is currently closed. Watching the development of the Experiential Educational Garden is another reason we all look forward to the reopening. The park features in the Think-Water Cape Town Green Map.
The park contains many features of interest that members of the public can enjoy. These include the Biodiversity Showcase Garden (BSG), outdoor labyrinth, adventure play park, wetland garden and water systems, as well as open lawn areas and shaded spaces.
Experiential Educational Garden
The Experiential Educational Garden will be situated in one of the areas on the outskirts of the park that is currently underutilised as a natural grass meadow space, directly adjacent to the City’s Biodiversity Showcase Garden Environmental Education (BSG EE) Centre.
The experiential garden promises to be a place of discovery and learning. It will function as an outdoor environmental education space for engaging and activating all five basic senses, and exposing learners to this interactive outdoor experience.
It is envisaged that the new feature will help build confidence through physical and social experiences, and interaction. The learners will learn new skills and challenge themselves to take responsibility for the environment and their actions.
‘This addition speaks to our commitment to creating an environment that optimises the use of natural assets. Central to this development is our aspiration to expose children to nature and hopefully encourage them to love it. Technology, and safety concerns, among other things, have alienated children from nature and they do not have the opportunity to play, smell, touch, listen or hear freely in nature. The EEG will aim to reconnect the children to the environment and thus boost positive behaviour change,’ said Alderman Marian Nieuwoudt, the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Spatial Planning and Environment.
- The EEG will host environmental education and training programmes for learners of all ages.
- The EEG will incorporate features that engage and activate all senses – touch, taste, sight, smell and sound, by drawing on the four elements of nature – earth, wind, water and fire.
The environmental education activities that will be offered will look at all of these elements and the idea of reconnecting children and people to the environment to allow them to have a positive experience.
The EEG will include different elements including:
• Textured boardwalks and pathways
• Scented medicinal and edible plants
• Drinking fountain and an interactive water feature
• A weather station
• Educational mosaic and animal print stepping stones
• Woven bird nests
• Natural climbing structure
• A sand pit
• A worm crawling tunnel structure
• Beaded animals
• An interactive permaculture garden
‘I am thrilled that the City’s strategic assets are being used to create benefits for the residents and economy of Cape Town. This park is incredible and most certainly a valuable asset with more than one million people visiting every year. Research shows that there are countless economic benefits of having an urban park situated within a city, including increasing property value, attracting development but also allowing for important linkages for communities,’ said Alderman Vos.