New team’s fo­cus on re­gen­er­a­tion

Southern Gazette (South Perth) - - OPINION -

THE new year will her­ald an end to longun­ful­filled pledges to re­gen­er­ate Bent­ley, ac­cord­ing to new Bent­ley Com­mu­nity Fo­cus (BCF) chair­man Frank Lanza.

The Bent­ley res­i­dent and for­mer City of Can­ning coun­cil hope­ful said since his De­cem­ber ap­point­ment to chair­man, a line had been drawn be­neath the BCF of the past.

He said with con­sul­tancy and com­mu­nity en­gage­ment, the $700 mil­lion re­gen­er­a­tion pro­ject will fi­nally get off the ground.

BCF is a not-for­profit or­gan­i­sa­tion that brings to­gether lo­cal res­i­dents with com­mu­nity or­gan­i­sa­tions, lo­cal and State Govern­ment, and key stake­hold­ers.

The re­gen­er­a­tion pro­ject be­tween the Hous­ing Au­thor­ity and City of Can­ning will even­tu­ally be a cen­tral hub with hous­ing and shop­ping precincts and am­ple com­mu­nity space.

As a first step to­wards re­gen­er­a­tion of the precinct, the Hous­ing Au­thor­ity un­der­took sub­stan­tial ren­o­va­tion of Brown­lie Tow­ers be­tween 2005 and 2010, but the pro­ject has been largely dor­mant since.

Mr Lanza said there was still plenty to do and get­ting the com­mu­nity rein­vig­o­rated ahead of the changes was his top pri­or­ity.

“When you have been promised some­thing for six years and you hear noth­ing but ne­glect, you start to think things won’t hap­pen,” he said.

“I’ve lived in Bent­ley, I’ve seen it all… Bent­ley is not to­day what it was yes­ter­day. (Upon com­ple­tion) Bent­ley will be swish; this is the big­gest re­gen­er­a­tion pro­ject in Aus­tralia.”

Mr Lanza said he had en­listed the help of Vic­to­ria Park MLA Ben Wyatt and Sen­a­tor Sue Lines and met with coun­cil em­ploy- ees and the Hous­ing Au­thor­ity. He be­lieved things would move af­ter the fi­nan­cial year.

He said he would even­tu­ally li­aise with Ma­son Ward coun­cil­lors Jesse Jacobs and Ayse Martli.

“I am look­ing to see what we were promised; it’s one of many rea­sons I am in­volved in this pro­ject,” he said.

Reg­u­lar, open meet­ings will be held.

Pic­ture: Matt Jelonek www.com­mu­ni­typix.com.au d448884

Bent­ley Com­mu­nity Fo­cus sec­re­tary Ali­son Smyth, trea­surer Fran­cis Cheah, chair­man Frank Lanza and com­mit­tee mem­ber Kelsie Koontz.

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