Hundreds petition against development
MOVING Bayswater City Soccer Club (BCSC) to Morley should be considered before committing $24.8 million to redevelop Frank Drago Reserve, City of Bayswater councillor Chris Cornish said.
Last year the soccer club applied to Bayswater Council for an expansion of its home ground, also home to bowling, tennis and croquet clubs, to meet Football Federation standards by 2019.
As a result, a draft masterplan was developed that included compliant pitches and supporting facilities for the soccer club and shared clubrooms for the other clubs.
The masterplan left the three clubs and local residents disappointed, with a petition established during the community consultation period that closed on May 8.
Mayor Sylvan Albert said the City was reviewing more than 100 submissions received, totalling more than 800 individual comments.
Cr Albert said the draft proposal encroached on the bowling and croquet clubs’ available space to allow for more parking bays and public open space.
“A range of stakeholder comments provided throughout the consultation period are currently being reviewed and considered,” he said.
“A final plan is to be presented for council for its consideration.”
At the time of going to print, the petition had more than 380 signatories.
Cr Albert said once the City received the petition it would be up to council whether it wished to consider it.
He suggested BCSC should develop its regional facility at the Perth Bayswater Rugby Club’s home ground Pat O’Hara Reserve in Morley and the rugby club move to Frank Drago Reserve.
“Why knock down the BCSC stadium and do multimillion dollar site works when the existing facilities and pitches would be ideal for the rugby club,” he said.
“If the soccer club built their new stadium at Pat O’Hara Reserve then there would be much less site works required. Town planner Greg Smith agreed and said the draft masterplan was nonsensical by catering to one club, potential parking demands negatively impacting local residents, tree loss and replacing oxygen-giving grass with synthetic lawns.
Mr Smith said the regional soccer facility would be better off somewhere like Morley where the crowds drawn to the games could utilise local businesses and transport options in the area.
Both BCSC president Gerry Maio and Perth Bayswater Rugby Club Alister Milligan said the clubs were open to looking at all options for their betterment as well as their codes.