AN early 1900s carousel is among the ideas being put forward for the Hargreaves Mall.
Strathfieldsaye’s Kevin Johnston has written to the Bendigo Traders Association and the City of Greater Bendigo to recommend a carousel.
He said he saw little point in installing a playground in the mall when the city already had high-quality playgrounds with better parking options elsewhere.
“Many towns throughout North America have their carousels in major parks and CBD precincts,” Mr Johnston said.
“The benefits are there to see, even in Australia with the carousel in Canberra’s main shopping precinct.
“There is also one on the promenade on Geelong’s foreshore and... in the Melbourne Zoo and Luna Park.”
Mr Johnston said a carousel would suit Bendigo’s iconic heritage and complement the city’s heritage trams.
Sandhurst ward councillor James Reade, whose ward includes the mall, welcomed the carousel proposal.
City of Greater Bendigo councillors this week allocated $150,000 to a play space in the mall.
The Bendigo Traders Association has long campaigned for a playground to be brought back to the mall.
Cr Reade said he hoped consulting with those likely to use the play space would help shape the idea’s future in the mall.
“The traders, as much respect as I have for them, are not the ones to design the play space,” he said.
“I really want to hear what the people who will use the play space want. We need to tell these people that we do value their input.”
Cr Reade urged people to think “outside the square” about the type of play space.
But he said it was important to remember the cost constraints of the project.
“We have to be mindful that for $150,000 we won’t get very much,” Cr Reade said.
“If people want to play on a playground then why not use the great ones we have at Lake Weeroona or Rosalind Park?
“We need to be mindful that we won’t get a really high-quality playground for the amount we have budgeted.”