A DEFUNCT police station in Spearwood will not be re-opened, despite a survey showing WA police were concerned excessive travel was hampering their ability to serve the community.
The curtains were drawn at the old Cockburn police station on the corner of Rockingham Road and Newton Street last October when its officers moved to the $21 million purpose-built police hub in Cockburn Central.
At the time a petition was submitted to the City of Cockburn calling for the station to remain open, with residents fearing the new station 10km east would decrease the local police presence.
WA Police argued the new location would have a limited effect on services, with the area covered by a local policing team.
But a survey of WA Police Union members this month found they believed the size of metropolitan districts was leading to excessive travel, while 51 per cent believed local policing teams should be scrapped.
The chance of the Spearwood station being re-opened was raised during public question time at Cockburn’s May council meeting, with chief executive Stephen Cain saying it was unlikely.
“The City took a fairly strident view to try have the previous government consider whether they’d retain the former Cockburn Police station,” he said.
“That was clearly a decision the government and the police department wouldn’t support.
“I believe the issue of the Cockburn police station will not be re-visited by this Government.”
With the land being rezoned for residential purposes, Mr Cain’s comments were re-confirmed by Police Minister Michelle Roberts, who said the Government would deliver on an election promise to make the new Cockburn police station open 24 hours.
“The new station can accommodate 200 police officers and staff, compared to the former station only having room for 27 staff,” she said.
“Officers from a range of policing areas including district management, local policing and response teams are now based at the complex and are working hard to combat local crime and anti-social behaviour.
“The Commissioner of Police has advised me the former Cockburn police station at Rockingham Road is not fit for policing.”
Police Commissioner Karl O’Callaghan – speaking on radio following the release of the survey – said response time targets were being met.