At last, Sirona Capital wins battle for South Perth tower

The West Australian

18th November 2019.

Developer Sirona Capital has been given the green light to build a 38-storey tower in South Perth following a year of mediation and revisions.

The proposal was approved this morning by the Metro Central Joint Development Assessment Panel with a 3-1 vote.

The original application from Sirona for a 144m-tall building was knocked back last year by the panel because of a lack of a planning framework for the area to determine the upper limits of what should be built.

Sirona cut the size of the building down to 123.3m, which is in line with the City of South Perth’s draft activity centre plan for focused development around Mends Street.

The panel’s presiding member Megan Adair said today she thought the building’s design was elegant and beautiful.

“I’m very supportive of this and I think it is very innovative, the private office space that has been added in,” she said.

There were several deputations to the panel from residents unhappy with the proposal, including one which raised the issue of future congestion in South Perth if all the potential developments in the works were built.

Ms Adair said the cumulative impact on traffic and parking issues from more developments springing up was a real issue.

“The City (of South Perth) is one of the few that has been looking at that cumulative effect ... I hope they will do more in this regard,” she said.

City of South Perth councillor Blake D’Souza was the only panel member to vote against the development.

Mr D’Souza said a 92.5m height exception for the development was not warranted.

“Just because discretion can be exercised does not mean it should be exercised,” he said.

Sirona managing director Matthew McNeilly said the process had been long and expensive but worth the effort.

“While not everyone will appreciate the concession we’ve made on height, we felt it was important to demonstrate to the community that we were able to re-align our thinking to deliver the best possible outcome under the current planning framework,” he said.

“We have made considerable concessions as part of the State Administrative Tribunal mediation process.”