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    Plans revived for a transit-oriented development in South Perth

    Kirsty Sier

    The City of South Perth council have released a design and planning report which they hope will lead to a transit-oriented development on the South Perth Peninsula. The South Perth Peninsula Place and Design Report is organised into a series of “goals” and “ideas” for the growing region, developed as a collaboration between Roberts Day (place, urban design and planning), Donaldson and Warn (architecture), EPCAD (landscape architecture), Colliers International (economics) and GTA Consultants (engineering and traffic).

    The WA government first stated their intention to build a South Perth train station in 2002. In the coming years, it is anticipated that the South Perth peninsula will see a massive population swell, as the population of Perth as a whole is projected to grow by 3.5 million by 2050. However, the plan was dismissed and early construction work deemed unjustified by the government.

    In response, the City of South Perth Council commissioned its own report – the South Perth Station Precinct Plan – to champion the case for construction. The plan, which outlined a path to securing a transit-led development for the area, was adopted by the council in 2011. Despite this adoption and a “significant” level of development being approved, the joint issues of funding and planning remained.

    “Securing a firm timeframe and funding model is critical to ensuring that the [South Perth] Peninsula develops a transit-oriented precinct,” read the council-led report.

    Since then, movement on the station development precinct has been stagnant.

    Despite the state government’s 2016 Transport @ 3.5 million plan failing to include any mention of a South Perth station and incorporated development, the City of South Perth council has now produced a new concept proposal that they hope will help leverage the approval of both state and federal governments. The South Perth Peninsula Place and Design Report outlines a number of urban planning initiatives for the area, such as “a raised platform above the freeway reserve, on which a publicly accessible deck and two buildings are situated. It is proposed that the South Perth Train Station would be incorporated as part of this development.”

    The report also recommends ways to curtail excessive heights for new builds as the peninsula undergoes densification. In place of the 2011 plan’s “outdated” limits on building heights (14 to 41 metres), the new report instead proposes to confine buildings with heights above the discretionary limit to certain areas, such as Richardson Park, Labouchere Road, the southern end of Mends Street and the City Square fringe.

    Previous attempts to construct tall buildings on the South Perth Peninsula – such as the rejected, 44-storey tower developed by Edge Visionary Living – have attracted controversy. The City of South Perth council is hopeful that this new plan will finally gain approval of higher levels of government.

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