Gosford Leagues Club Park is a key open space renewal project within the Civic area of Gosford which pays homage to the local indigenous Darkinjung people as well as the rich boat building history of Brisbane Water.

The concept behind the development came about from reviewing an old survey plan which showed the original Brisbane Water mean high water level (MHWL), which has been reclaimed to construct the Central Coast Highway, effectively removing accessibility to Brisbane Water from the CBD. The development of the park is treated as an ‘archaeological’ dig, using the shoreline of 1919 as a datum for the design, anchoring the key elements along its edge. The project revitalises Gosford CBD through green space infrastructure and brings back the tide.

The development was completed on 27th February 2021 and was officially opened to the public by NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian.

The painted totem poles within the Tidal Terrace represent the local Aboriginal clan and nations with each clan represented by a different pole with each pole hand painted by a local Aboriginal artist. The sandstone animals have significance to the local Aboriginal community with each animal being chosen to reflect various dreamtime stories.

Key challenges the project faced were working below tidal water levels, maintaining child safety and water quality within the Tidal Terrace and exposing charged water infrastructure.

Gosford Leagues Club Field seamlessly integrates itself into the renewed public domain for the region and provides a contemporary space for visitors and locals alike to appreciate the richness in character and culture that the region holds.

Judges Comments

The parkland created at the Gosford waterfront is a stand-out exemplar of inspirational design. The project not only overcame a range of technical challenges – it embraced them to incorporate and work around substantial trunk infrastructure. The notion of allowing tidal influx into a playspace as a feature provides an elegant and interactive drawcard for the community. The project has respectfully celebrated Indigenous history and customs from the local Darkinjung people who were intregral members of the design team. Everyone must visit this space – sunset on a warm evening being the best time.