Going for long-term value during a community centre upgrade, composite timber decking paves the way for longevity in the neighbourhood. An important part of community life in the area, the Balwyn Community Centre represents a physical and social wellbeing outlet for a large sector of the region. Like many such government-run facilities, it serves as the heart of the neighbourhood, providing recreational amenity and social education opportunities across a broad spectrum. Everything from tennis courts to a community garden, a full contingent of educational programmes from language classes to arts and crafts, as well as childcare services and event venue hire can be found at the Balwyn Community Centre. In order to meet the expanding needs of a growing and increasingly diverse population, Boroondara Council instigated a $7 million upgrade of the popular centre, in-line with community feedback. No longer suitable for the burgeoning list of programmes and activities the centre provides, the expansion project included creating new function spaces for group activities, the relocation of the Balwyn Maternal and Child Health Centre, increasing the occasional childcare facilities, as well as enhancing the park setting and revitalising the natural wetlands on the site, along with the construction of a new recreation zone and general landscape improvements. Wanting to ensure longevity for the upgrades, composite-timber specialists Futurewood were specified by the architects to supply the materials required to construct new decking and screening across the project. Going with Futurewood’s CleverDeck Original timber composite in Weathered Stone, the natural earth tone blends the new construction in beautifully with the existing architecture and the well-established bushland setting of the centre. Made with 90 percent reclaimed/recycled timber and plastic, with a sanded surface that reveals a realistic timber look, CleverDeck Original is a cost-effective alternative to natural timber. Hardwearing, CleverDeck will not rot, cup, split or warp. It is termite and white ant resistant, with no knot holes, splinters or tannin leaching to worry about. Fully finished and ready to install, using a complete concealed fix system for quick and easy installation, CleverDeck requires no painting or oiling. As a composite timber, this innovative product is low-maintenance and has a low water absorption rate. Its P5 slip-rated surface also makes it safe for extensive use in public areas. Used to construct walkways, ramps, railings, park furniture and clad buildings on the Balwyn Centre project, CleverDeck has proven itself a viable material for large-scale civic projects, and contributed to improving community services for the Balwyn region.