$250m Beckenham station precinct revitalisation may cost nothing for Gosnells

New City of Gosnells mayor Glenn Dewhurst.
New City of Gosnells mayor Glenn Dewhurst.

THE Beckenham station precinct could be set to undergo a $250 million revitalisation and it may not cost the City of Gosnells a cent.

The City is planning to build a neighbourhood centre on Bickley Reserve on Sevenoaks Street, across the road from Beckenham train station, which could also feature a Woolworths, boutique cafes, housing, shops and entertainment facilities.

Greenpeak Nominees is expected to privately fund the development, predicted to cost between $250 million and $300 million.

If the City gets the go-ahead, the site would be home to 6000sq m of retail floor space, could accommodate approximately 4000 residents, and feature communal open spaces.

Councillor Glenn Dewhurst said the development would have numerous benefits to the local community, including substantial employment opportunities, affordable housing, and numerous retail and entertainment amenities.

“This is the development of the future and we hope the Western Australian Planning Commission (WAPC) also provides the developer every support possible in getting the development off the ground.” Cr Dewhurst said.

The Council rejected plans to proceed with a ‘main road’ concept for the precinct and instead favoured an amended plan featuring underground parking beneath the shops, to enable the ground level to be landscaped and enable pedestrians to walk to the centre.

However, the WAPC’s current Liveable Neighbourhood Policy stipulates the construction of any neighbourhood centre should contain a main road, so the City’s plans would require approval from WAPC to proceed.

Cr Dewhurst said the precinct would put Beckenham on the map and urged the WAPC to approve the plans.

“What happens with a lot of developments, if things don’t fit into a round hole and it’s a square coming along, the government have a habit of saying no instead of thinking outside the box,” he said.

“Council has put in significant resources into me educating me on smart and future cities, this has now paid off.

“Smart cities and future cities to this scale do not have a main street, I’ll be very disappointed if the State Government gives these guys (the developers) a hard time.”