South Perth brings on vote

The West Australian

20th February 2019.

The City of South Perth has resolved to vote on its activity centre plan at a special council meeting on March 6.

The council has found itself caught between the demands of a State Government anxious to get its planning house in order — and create certainty for residents and businesses — and a group of vocal residents who have campaigned vigorously against taller building on the South Perth peninsula.

The City of South Perth has, however, brought forward the vote, which it had scheduled for April or May, after the WA Planning Commission intervened.

Sirona Capital managing director Matthew McNeilly was highly critical of the delay after his 42-storey apartment tower opposite the zoo was knocked back.

Mr McNeilly said the South Perth peninsula was a State asset that should be developed carefully and sustainably using a sound planning framework.

City of South Perth mayor Sue Doherty declined to comment ahead of the vote.

However, she has previously said the council wanted the best outcome for the “city, council and stakeholders” that is in line with WAPC guidelines.

“The place that we are planning for is exceptional and unique . . . with a stunning natural setting and an unrivalled central location,” Ms Doherty said.

WAPC chairman David Caddy has previously said the decision to postpone a carefully considered revision to the City of South Perth’s planning scheme had created an unacceptable planning limbo.

Tensions over appropriate planning for the City of South Perth intensified after 2013 changes to its planning scheme, intended to allow the development that would justify building a train station. However, unintended consequences of those changes included adverse impacts on existing residents from inappropriate setbacks and trouble with the high water table.