HOUSING PLAN AGITATES NEIGHBOURHOOD
A STATE Government Housing Authority proposal to build units in a 40-year-old neighbourhood near the intersection of Aston and Mofflin avenues in Claremont has agitated residents of the area.
“We have Australia Day and Christmas street parties in the park at the other end of the avenue, and we fear this will also be developed,” said Margaret Barbour (78), a 46-year Mofflin Avenue resident.
Resident and petition organiser Elizabeth Killerby has 25 signed submissions critical of the HA’s proposal for a three-storey, 25-unit complex that would include about three social housing units, about six for affordable housing and the remainder to be sold privately.
Because the site is Government-owned, the units avoid council planning and go to the Government’s WA Planning Commission.
“Why is this prime land at the Housing Authority site, which includes private homes, not open to tender?” Mofflin Avenue resident Karen Kerr asked.
The council told residents about the proposal 10 days ago, creating concerns of more apartments in the precinct because the HA architect’s website said the units could be a landmark for other development in the area.
Residents are also concerned that parking at the units may lead to congestion, a loss of privacy at new, potentially overshadowed homes north of the site and why the proposal breaches the council’s R25 zoning in the surrounding area.
“We knew it was Housing Authority land when we bought here, but most of us thought if it was developed it would be single dwellings, perhaps two subdivisions for four homes, and not 25 units, so the council should go in to bat for us,” ratepayer Gary Bailey, who is building in Mofflin Avenue, said.
Claremont Mayor Jock Barker said the council could only comment to the WAPC about the proposal, and “quite often Government departments ignore whatever we say”.
HA commercial operations general manager Nigel Hindmarsh said the units were considered public works needing approval from the WAPC and the HA was “keen” for “feedback” from the council and residents
He said all parking would be hidden with six visitor bays on the street, a concealed roof would reduce the impression of height but the mix of housing types was undecided.
Mofflin Avenue petition organiser Elizabeth Killerby with residents upset by the HA’s proposal to build units near their homes. Inset: The proposed apartment block.