Argent Related and Barnet Council, working in partnership to deliver the 180-acre new town centre development north of Cricklewood, have opened a new public park. Designed by East Architects, Exploratory Park replaces the Rosa Freedman Centre and Clarefield Park with a welcoming new landscaped space. It will be open from 12 of August for several years for local people to enjoy until the permanent Claremont Park is completed.
Exploratory Park provides a brand new outdoor space with a focus on play—and playfulness—for all ages, allowing local people to enjoy being outside in a well-maintained, safe environment. It has three main spaces: a paved area close to the entrance for events and games; a grassy area for picnics, relaxing and running around; and a central area with high-quality new play equipment.
Catering for both young and older children, there are slides, swings, a seesaw, spring rockers for under-fives, a climbing pyramid, outdoor table tennis and a games court with basketball hoops. There is also a range of fitness equipment to enable adults to exercise outdoors, and different types of seating for quieter activities.
Recognising green spaces are a priority for local people, as well as traditional turfed areas, the park has 41 new trees, planted and in pots for planned relocation to the future Claremont Park, as well as reeds, grasses and seasonal and scented flower planting.
The park has been designed to be easily managed and maintained, and with safety of its visitors in mind, promoting a feeling of security and allowing relaxation. There are clear sightlines across the space; feature mirrors at the edges contribute to visibility, and there is now a gated entrance onto Claremont Way. The park will be open from 7am and closed at dusk.
The design for Exploratory Park has been shaped by local residents, particularly children, with consultation taking place to discover what they wanted from the new space. Respected community design collective, The Decorators and engagement specialists, Soundings held a series of workshop sessions, interviews and a listening event in 2017 and 2018. The comments and ideas from people who participated were fed back to the design team at East.
Councillor Daniel Thomas, Leader of Barnet Council said: “It’s wonderful to see the Exploratory Park open just in time for the summer. This is the first in what will be a series of new parks and open spaces that will enrich the lives of local residents and new comers to the area for years to come, and it’s great to see the Brent Cross South development truly underway as part of our wider scheme to transform Brent Cross Cricklewood.”
Nick Searl, Argent Related Partner and joint-lead for the Brent Cross South development, adds: “This is an exciting first step in the Brent Cross South development. We wanted to ensure that throughout the redevelopment process, residents and visitors had access to well designed and interactive green spaces. The Exploratory Park has been designed with the local community and we look forward to seeing residents and visitors enjoying this new open space.”Back to News