Money for Swan Val­ley cy­cle path

Kalamunda Reporter - - Front Page - Sarah Brookes

TRANS­PORT Min­is­ter Rita Saf­fi­oti has an­nounced fund­ing for a cy­cle path that will link El­len­brook with the Swan Val­ley.

The $200,000 State Gov­ern­ment grant will en­able the City of Swan to build a new 2km shared path along Gnan­gara Road be­tween Hen­ley Brook Av­enue and West Swan Road, let­ting cy­clists ride through the Swan Val­ley to Guild­ford.

It was one of 34 grants awarded to lo­cal gov­ern­ments across WA, to­talling $6 mil­lion.

Ms Saf­fi­oti said the path would help sup­port the grow­ing com­mu­nity.

“This stretch of Gnan­gara Road has been a miss­ing link for quite some time and will give El­len­brook and Ave­ley res­i­dents more choice in how they get to school, work or to the iconic Swan Val­ley,” she said.

“In com­ing years, the grow­ing com­mu­nity will have many more cy­cling, pub­lic trans­port and road con­nec­tions to key em­ploy­ment ar­eas.”

Swan Mayor David Lu­cas said the grant was timely.

“The City of Swan is cur­rently in the process of de­vel­op­ing a cy­cling net­work and this $200,000 grant is a timely con­tri­bu­tion that will help us ex­pand this net­work along Gnan­gara Road,” he said.

“Im­prov­ing the con­nec­tiv­ity and amenity of our com­mu­ni­ties is a pri­or­ity for the City and we wel­come the gen­er­ous com­mit­ment that has been made by the McGowan gov­ern­ment.

Swan Hills MLA Jes­sica Shaw said it was great to see the fund­ing de­liv­ered.

CITY of Kala­munda chief ex­ec­u­tive Rhonda Hardy will pre­pare a de­tailed re­port on the mer­its and risks of launch­ing a ju­di­cial re­view in the Supreme Court to chal­lenge the State Gov­ern­ment’s de­ci­sion to re­voke plan­ning changes that would have paved the way for an aged care fa­cil­ity in Wilkins Road.

Plan­ning Min­is­ter Rita Saf­fi­oti last year re­voked plan­ning ap­proval to re­zone the 11ha site in Kala­munda, cit­ing numer­ous prob­lems such as Na­tive Ti­tle, bush­fire mit­i­ga­tion, com­mer­cial vi­a­bil­ity and sewage.

Na­ture Re­serves Preser­va­tion Group pres­i­dent Tony Fowler said any ac­tion in the Supreme Court would be a “fruit­less waste” of ratepay­ers’ money.

“The rec­om­men­da­tion by the Kala­munda Aged Care Ad­vi­sory Group is a half-baked rec­om­men­da­tion based on noth­ing more than the urge to be seen to do some­thing to solve the aged care cri­sis,” he said.

“While com­mend­able, it shows lack of knowl­edge of Supreme Court.

“A cost es­ti­mate of $20,000 to $40,000 to take the mat­ter to the Supreme Court is hope­lessly op­ti­mistic and is much more likely to be $120,000 should this be­come a full blown hear­ing.

“Should the City be un­suc­cess­ful, the Min­is­ter, hav­ing been dragged through the courts by the City, may con­sider seek­ing costs from the City and if so the fig­ure would at the very least dou­ble.

“Is it re­ally worth set­ting up the City for a con­ceiv­ably em­bar­rass­ing re­jec­tion by the Supreme Court and po­ten­tially ru­inous costs, all to no good ef­fect?”

Goose­berry Hill res­i­dent and WA La­bor Zig Zag branch vi­cepres­i­dent Nigel Dick­in­son said any le­gal ac­tion was un­likely to suc­ceed.

“The of­fi­cer’s re­port sets out in stark terms that pick­ing the scab on Wilkins Road isn’t a very good idea,” he said.

Aged care ad­vo­cate Neil Pem­ber said the City should con­tinue to fight the de­ci­sion.

“For seven years we have been push­ing for an in­te­grated aged care fa­cil­ity to be built there,” he said.

“The City has al­ready spent more than $200,000 on Wilkins Road and this will be wasted if we don’t con­tinue on.

D481240

City of Swan Mayor David Lu­cas and Trans­port Min­is­ter Rita Saf­fi­oti .

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