Fore­shore plan ques­tioned

Southern Gazette (South Perth) - - NEWS -

THE City of South Perth’s plan to build a multi-pur­pose in­ter­pre­tive fa­cil­ity within Sir James Mitchell Park has been met with some con­cern in the com­mu­nity.

The Wes­tralian Cen­tre is pro­posed to oc­cupy 2200sq m on the South Perth fore­shore about 300m west of the Coode Street Jetty and would in­clude an out­door area, re­cre­ation and in­ter­pre­ta­tion space and build­ings for so­cial and civic events.

The City plans to seek State, Fed­eral and pri­vate fund­ing for the project, which is es­ti­mated to cost about $7 mil­lion, based on ini­tial de­sign con­cepts.

In-prin­ci­ple sup­port was given by the coun­cil for the pro­posed project in Fe­bru­ary and the City has com­mit­ted to com­mis­sion­ing an in­de­pen­dent sur­vey of a broad sam­ple of WA and lo­cal com­mu­nity mem­bers dur­ing the next month.

The City hopes the site will be­come a tourist at­trac­tion but res­i­dents raised con­cerns about the project at the City’s March meet­ing.

South Perth res­i­dent Jen­nifer Ne­vard said she had no is­sue with the de­sign but was con­cerned with the pro­posed time­line and ques­tioned pub­lic sup­port for the project.

“The time­line looks am­bi­tious; it’s pro­posed to be built in time for Re­mem­brance Day in November 2018,” she said.

“The City has un­der­taken pub­lic con­sul­ta­tion in pre­vi­ous years dur­ing which there was a de­sire ex­pressed for healthy life­style spa­ces and this seems to be at odds with the con­sul­ta­tion pro­cesses.

“There were con­sul­ta­tion pe­ri­ods in re­cent times when they put to­gether a strate­gic plan for the area.”

Mayor Sue Doherty said the coun­cil be­lieved the pro­posed Cen­tre had the po­ten­tial to en­hance the flex­i­bil­ity and use of the area with pub­lic toi­lets, kitchen fa­cil­i­ties in the restau­rant or cafe and ser­vices such as elec­tric­ity and wa­ter.

“These ad­di­tions would en­able the area to be­come the land­mark event space for civic and so­cial events that were iden­ti­fied through the South Perth Fore­shore Strat­egy and Man­age­ment Plan con­sul­ta­tion,” she said.

Ms Doherty said since 2012 the City had met var­i­ous stake­hold­ers and iden­ti­fied the needs and wants of the com­mu­nity for the South Perth Fore­shore.

“Feed­back from 978 res­i­dents, busi­nesses and park users on their ideas, opin­ions and pri­or­i­ties for the South Perth Fore­shore was re­ceived by the City in 2013,” she said.

“This feed­back re­ceived was in­te­gral to the devel­op­ment of the 2015 South Perth Fore­shore Strat­egy and Man­age­ment Plan (SPF Plan).”

Ms Doherty said the SPF Plan iden­ti­fied the area as a land­mark site and event space that rep­re­sented na­tional, state, lo­cal and Abo­rig­i­nal sig­nif­i­cance that pro­vided space for civic and so­cial events.

“The City will be seek­ing feed­back from the com­mu­nity and stake­hold­ers on the Wes­tralian Cen­tre con­cept to ensure their wants and needs are be­ing met,” she said.

An artist’s im­pres­sion of the pro­posed Wes­tralian Cen­tre.

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