Palmerston North's first free outdoor gym is taking shape at Takaro Park.
The circle of foundations for eight pieces of exercise equipment have been laid in preparation for an overlay of artificial grass, and the gear is expected to arrive on site at the end of the week.
The $40,000 project arose after submissions on the city council's draft Annual Plan two years ago calling for the placement of more outdoor gear to make it easier for adults to exercise without the expense of gym membership.
Council external contracts and housing officer Lynne McMillan said staff had considered a range of options and locations before deciding on Takaro Park.
It was selected because it was close to facilities including a new toilet, there was a playground for children accompanying adults who were exercising, and there was good visibility from the road without being too exposed.
She said some of the other locations considered were in neighbourhoods where more people already had access to gyms, and the means to get to them.
"We are hoping the community will take some pride in it."
The exercise equipment was being arranged in a circle to encourage interaction between people using it.
The gear has been bought from Devine Fitness Equipment in Nelson, which McMillan hoped would achieve the council's value for money ideal.
McMillan said she hoped lighting could be installed next winter so more people could use it in the evenings.
Depending on the success and popularity of the gym, it could be the first of several developed around the city.
- Manawatu Standard
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