Cen­tre set for facelift

BIG PLANS FOR THE HEART OF BEL­MONT

Southern Gazette (South Perth) - - FRONT PAGE - Joel Kelly

THE trans­for­ma­tion of Bel­mont’s civic heart in Faulkner Park is a step closer, with one of the pro­ject’s cor­ner­stone projects – a $28 mil­lion com­mu­nity cen­tre – re­leased for ten­der.

A new multi-pur­pose com­mu­nity cen­tre is the one of the ma­jor un­der­tak­ings out­lined in the Faulkner Civic Precinct Mas­ter Plan, which was ap­proved in De­cem­ber.

The new cen­tre is pro­posed to in­clude a li­brary, se­nior ci­ti­zen cen­tre, mu­seum, of­fice spa­ces for not-for-profit or­gan­i­sa­tions, a creche and cafe.

It will take the place of the Bel­mont Se­nior Cit­i­zens Cen­tre at the Wright Street end of Faulkner Park.

Later, City of Bel­mont will im­ple­ment other aspects of the mas­ter plan, in­clud­ing drain­ing the lake at Faulkner Park to make way for an am­phithe­atre event space and war me­mo­rial.

In a bid to im­prove pedes­trian move­ment through the area, Progress Way will be closed and the car park for the civic precinct will be moved be­hind the City of Bel­mont ad­min­is­tra­tion build­ing.

Some res­i­dents have voiced their dis­ap­point­ment over los­ing the lake, but feed­back on the mas­ter plan has been mostly pos­i­tive so far.

The City will need to fin­ish a hy­drol­ogy, flora and fauna and park­ing study be­fore other projects in the area pro­ceed.

Th­ese will in­clude cre­at­ing more recre­ational space, de­vel­op­ing a civic plaza and up­grad­ing fa­cil­i­ties such as the Bel­mont Oa­sis Leisure Cen­tre, skate park and the li­brary.

Mayor Phil Marks said the com­mu­nity cen­tre ten­der was a land­mark mo­ment for Bel­mont.

“This first step to­wards de­liv­er­ing the com­mu­nity cen­tre is an ex­cit­ing one to­wards achiev­ing the long-term vi­sion of re­in­forc­ing the precinct as the cen­tre of Bel­mont,” he said.

“The Faulkner Civic Mas­ter Plan aims to en­sure the precinct will con­tinue to meet the fu­ture needs and ex­pec­ta­tions of the com­mu­nity.”

Cr Marks said con­struc­tion of the $28 mil­lion com­mu­nity cen­tre would not af­fect rates and the City al­ready had the ca­pac­ity to pay for the pro­ject.

“The City has en­sured it is in a po­si­tion to fund this de­vel­op­ment with­out an in­creased bur­den on its ratepay­ers,” he said.

The City is also pur­su­ing ex­ter­nal fund­ing through the Na­tional Stronger Re­gions Fund and Lot­tery­west.

Bel­mont Se­nior Cit­i­zens Cen­tre sec­re­tary trea­surer Mary Ri­d­ley and City of Bel­mont Mayor Phil Marks.

An artist’s im­pres­sion of the com­mu­nity cen­tre.

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