Wor­ries Spear­wood ‘left be­hind’

Cockburn Gazette - - NEWS - Jes­sica Nico

THE loss of shops, ser­vices and the City of Cockburn ad­min­is­tra­tion’s po­ten­tial move east have a group of Spear­wood res­i­dents fear­ing their sub­urb is be­ing “left be­hind”.

Res­i­dent John Cu­nai said a steady stream of or­gan­i­sa­tions, busi­nesses and po­ten­tially the City of Cockburn it­self leav­ing the area, cou­pled with pro­posed de­vel­op­ments that did not seem to be go­ing any­where, had many lo­cal res­i­dents wor­ried.

“Coles is no longer,” he said.

“The bowl­ing club was al­ways plan­ning to go but there is the va­cant land there and the City of Cockburn has an­nounced they want to move to Cockburn Cen­tral and all of a sud­den you’re think­ing ‘what is go­ing on?’.”

Amongst pro­posed im­prove­ments was a draft ac­tiv­ity cen­tre struc­ture plan put to coun­cil in May 2016, which aimed to make the area sur­round­ing Phoenix Shop­ping Cen­tre more pedes­trian-friendly by in­tro­duc­ing new en­tries to the cen­tre and re­duc­ing Rock­ing­ham Road to one lane, while also low­er­ing the speed limit to 50km/h.

It was shelved just 10 months later.

Mr Cu­nai, who was a mem­ber of the now de­funct Spear­wood Com­mu­nity As­so­ci­a­tion, said cob­webs on plans such as these, which he be­lieved would have been a good ini­tial step in revitalising the area, had res­i­dents un­happy.

“In 2007 the old Spear­wood Com­mu­nity As­so­ci­a­tion played a ma­jor part in a vi­sion­ing/re­vi­tal­i­sa­tion work­shop for the main Rock­ing­ham road precinct with the City of Cockburn, where over 200 in­ter­ested res­i­dents at­tended and con­trib­uted ideas for the fu­ture devel­op­ment of this area,” he said.

“How­ever, nine years elapsed and all the Spear­wood res­i­dents would hear and read was other sub­urb re­vi­tal­i­sa­tion such as Cool­bellup, Yange­bup, Hamil­ton Hill, but these sub­urbs had been iden­ti­fied after Spear­wood’s main big plan.

“What we’re con­cerned about now is that they’re go­ing to de­lay again.”

City of Cockburn chief ex­ec­u­tive Stephen Cain said the City had held staged im­prove­ments to the sub­urb since it be­came the first of its re­vi­tal­i­sa­tion ar­eas in 2009.

“Some of the key in­fra­struc­ture high­lights com­pleted to date in­clude the Spear­wood Av­enue up­grade ($1.24 mil­lion), Spear­wood Av­enue ex­ten­sion ($2.28m), in­terim se­niors cen­tre ($735,000) and Spear­wood Skate Park ($360,000),” he said.

Spear­wood res­i­dents with con­cerns or who want to find out more are in­vited to at­tend a com­mu­nity meet­ing at Spear­wood Pri­mary School from 7pm on Novem­ber 14.

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