The new colourful Perth Kids’ (Koolangka) Bridge linking the Perth Children’s Hospital to Kings Park, over Winthrop Avenue, is now open.
Premier Mark McGowan and State Government Ministers joined representatives from the Perth Children’s Hospital Foundation for the first walk over the bridge this morning.
The Kids’ Bridge will be dual named the ‘Koolangka Bridge’, which means ‘children’ in Noongar.
The three-metre wide, 217-metre-long structure will provide patients and families with easy access to Kings Park.
It will provide an opportunity for a range of therapies, including allied health, to be delivered in an environment harnessing the benefits of nature.
Staff across the QEII campus and the general public will also be able to use the bridge to easily access the park for fitness and wellbeing activities.
The bright colour palette of The Kids’ Bridge is complemented by programmable feature lighting that will be able to co-ordinate with other State Government structures such as the Matagarup Bridge.
Local company Civmec constructed the bridge in six months, using almost 300 tonnes of locally fabricated steel, supporting 40 local jobs, including apprentices and trainees.
The idea of the Kids’ Bridge was originally raised by the then Princess Margaret Hospital Kids Advisory Group which included Matthew Carulli, who sadly lost his life after a long battle with leukaemia.
Managed by Main Roads, the project was made possible with $6.3 million from the Perth Children’s Hospital Foundation.
As stated by Premier Mark McGowan:
“The Kids’ Bridge (Koolangka Bridge) has been talked about for many years and I am so pleased for everyone involved that today we are officially opening it.
“This locally made bridge will provide a much needed link for Perth Children’s Hospital patients and their families to the beauty of Kings Park and I want to thank the contractor and everyone involved in delivering the bridge so swiftly.
“I thank the Perth Children’s Hospital Foundation and all the key representatives involved over the years who have come together to make this project a reality.”
As stated by Health Minister Roger Cook:
“This bridge will deliver vital benefits for the families who need to use these facilities, with clinicians noting outdoor visits have a positive effect for the overall wellbeing of these families.
“Staff and the wider community will also benefit from connection of the structure to existing local path networks in the area, and the ability to use Kings Park for fitness, lifestyle and work breaks.
“Congratulations to all involved, particularly the Perth Children’s Hospital Foundation for all their work in making this project happen.”
As stated by Transport Minister Rita Saffioti:
“The colourful Kids’ (Koolangka) Bridge will become an iconic new structure across Winthrop Avenue and will be enjoyed by many people for years to come.
“The project was delivered by local WA company Civmec, supporting local jobs, while also using 300 tonnes of locally fabricated steel forming the bridge support.
“This bridge will join our other structures, like the Matagarup Bridge, that can be lit up to highlight important events.”
As stated by Environment Minister Amber-Jade Sanderson:
“For parents and kids who have to spend long periods at the hospital, the ability to walk across to Kings Park will provide much-needed respite.
“Until now, the park has been tantalisingly close but very hard for these families to get to.
“With the Kids’ Bridge we can bring the healing aspects of nature closer for our most vulnerable patients.”
As stated by Perth Children’s Hospital Foundation Chairman Hon. Ian Campbell:
“After 10 long years of planning and fundraising I couldn’t be prouder that the Kids’ Bridge (Koolangka Bridge) is now complete and connecting our children and their families to the healing power of one of the world’s best nature parks.
“Thank you to the McGowan Government and Main Roads for your incredible support in turning this dream into a reality.”