Heywood Park Smart Technology

  • Project typeCommunity
  • Project schedule12 months
  • Contractor nameOneWifi
  • Completion Date28 March 2020

The City of Unley has secured a $240,000 Smart Cities and Suburbs Grant from the Federal Government to integrate smart technology at Heywood Park, improving safety and usability of the popular park and reducing operating and maintenance costs.

It is also the recipient of $150,000 from the State Government’s Fund My Neighbourhood initiative for a mini ninja obstacle course in the park.

Smart technology that will be installed as part of the project includes an electric car charging station, predictive lighting, apps to help people check the availability of car parking and barbecues, and technology to notify the Council when bins need to be emptied, and to minimise and monitor water usage.

Council will also install environmental sensors, pedestrian counters and digital information kiosk.

In addition, the project will see new park furniture, paving and lighting installed.

Meanwhile the new mini ninja obstacle course, designed to cater for children aged 10-14, will be constructed in the north eastern corner of Heywood Park. Local resident Rebecca Deans, who garnered the support of 200 residents and petitioned the State Government for the funding, said the course would be a much welcome addition to the park.
“The mini ninja obstacle course not only caters for ‘tweens’ but provides a fitness-based outdoor activity in a beautiful location,” Rebecca Deans said.



What is the Heywood Park Mini-Ninja course?

As part of the SA Government’s Fund my Neighbourhood grant program, a local resident, with the support of over 200 other local residents, was successful in receiving $150,000 in funding for a ‘mini-ninja’ obstacle course in the north-eastern corner of Heywood Park. The project is aimed at providing activities for the 10 – 14-year old ‘tweens’ age group.

Will the park look different?

One of the best parts about the new smart technology that is being proposed is that it is almost entirely invisible.

Several initiatives are incorporated into the project that will make Heywood Park more beautiful, and speak to the heritage and natural beauty of the park:

  • New pathway paving
  • New park furniture
  • Feature lighting to statues, the original entry gates, (opposite Westall Avenue), and significant trees
  • New screening with vegetation to the water storage tank will enhance the aesthetics of the southern area of the park
  • New warm colour temperature lighting will replace the existing blue-white and orange lights, and will be much better for local residents in terms of glare control.

The Smart Technology in Heywood Park will be almost entirely invisible, as it will be concealed inside distribution boards, existing pits, and light poles. In fact, the use of smart poles will actually reduce the overall number of poles, pits, distribution boards and enclosures in the park by consolidating services into multi-purpose ‘nodes’ or locations. The only visible difference will be the new community information signage at the corner of King William Road and Northgate Streets that will replace the existing cluster of signs at the entry point to the bikeway.

How will the park be more useable?

Usability of Heywood Park is a key driver of this project. The following features will significantly increase usability:

  • Lighting to barbecue and recreation areas, as well as event power and audio mean that Heywood Park will be able to be used for better and larger events, and also in the evening
  • An electric car charging station in Adiscombe Street will cater for the increasing and inevitable move towards electric cars
  • Monitors on the barbecues connected to apps will mean that people can check if barbecues are available before heading off to the park. These Apps will also inform City of Unley grounds personnel when cleaning is required
  • Smart parking on Adiscombe Street and environs connected to apps will mean that people can check if parks are available on their way to the park. The App will also inform the Council if cars do not move for extended periods of time
  • Consolidation of various services into the new lighting ‘Smart Poles’ mean that the number of poles, pits and services points will significantly reduce.

How will smart initiatives improve safety for park users and cyclists?

The following initiatives are being investiagted to improve safety for all park users:

  • Pathways will be resurfaced making them safer for pedestrians and cyclists
  • The lighting along the main bikeway between King William Road and Whistler Avenue will be upgraded
  • Smart predictive lighting will be installed along the eastern pathway
  • New security and emergency lighting will be installed in the amenity block
  • Help emergency assist buttons will be strategically located in new lighting poles within the park
  • Noise monitoring will ensure that any excessive noise is monitored and managed
  • Remote operated retractable bollards will replace the existing bollards at the King William Road and Northgate Street intersection entry to the park, making the space more attractive for community events.

What are the environmental benefits for Heywood Park?

The smart technology that will reduce operating costs in Heywood Park will also provide direct environmental benefits in terms of reduced water and electricity consumption, and reduced waste.

Carefully designed lighting will also ensure that the behavioural patterns of indigenous fauna are not affected.

How will the park be more cost effective?

Smart technology will help save money on electricity, water and waste management.


New ultra-long life, energy efficient LED lighting will not only provide a more natural ‘human’ light for the park and enhance safety, combined with a lighting control and monitoring system it will reduce electricity by 60% and maintenance costs by 90%.


A control and monitoring system combined with environmental sensors will ensure that grounds are only watered when it is required, and only for as long as is required. If it rains when watering is due, then the irrigation will not come on. If it is forecast to rain just after watering is due, the watering will be postponed and only take place if rain doesn’t eventuate.

In addition, water monitoring technology will determine how much water is being used and also detect any excess usage that may be caused by fractured pipes or leaking taps. Water can be isolated from a central point until the leak is located and repaired.

Waste Management

Bins equipped with smart sensors will detect when bins are nearly full and notify waste management services that servicing is required. In the same way sensors will inform waste management services if a bin has not been used and does not require servicing, thus reducing the number of services and associated costs. 

How will this project benefit the City of Unley residents?

One of the reasons that the Heywood Park Project received the largest Federal Government grant awarded in South Australia is because it offers significant benefits for the entire community. The project does this because a significant part of the grant funding will be used to purchase smart systems for safety, lighting, water, waste, parking and traffic management that will be able to be used throughout the City of Unley to provide the same benefits as they will for Heywood Park.

What is smart parking and will I now need to pay for parking?

No. There will be no paid parking at Heywood Park. The purpose of the Smart Parking is to make parks easier to find in peak use periods.

Is it true LED lighting can be glary and bad for my health?

The local design firm engaged for this project are global experts in the field of smart city technology and urban lighting. It is true that there are some types of LED lighting that have been implicated with health issues and insomnia, (normally the ones with a bluish-white light), but these will not be used. The types of LED lights being used will be a warm light and in fact be better for local residents than the existing lights in terms of colour and glare control.

Could more lighting encourage undersirable night time use?

The main reason for the enhanced lighting is to facilitate events, and the lights can be controlled by the City of Unley to be on, off, or dimmed at any given moment.

What is the Heywood Park Smart precinct project?

Recently the City of Unley secured $240,000 in Federal Government Smart Cities and Suburbs funding to enhance the heritage and environmental features of Heywood Park. This was the largest grant of this type awarded in South Australia.

The project will see smart technology initiatives implemented in Heywood Park that will bring significant environmental benefits, improve the safety, usability and aesthetics of the park, and reduce operating and maintenance costs for the City of Unley. 



Addiscombe Pl, Unley Park 5061  View Map

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