Town centre plans hit water pipe snag

At the Government’s request, the City expanded its ‘activity centre’ concept plan to include the area south of the Albany Highway.

Deputy Mayor Ron Mitchell said real progress in Maddington was being obstructed by water pipes underneath the highway.

He said it was ‘amazing’ this issue was compromising development and that fragmented land ownership in the new area was another handicap.

City chief executive Ian Cowie said one reason the City first advertised the smaller area was it included far more publicly owned land than the new, meaning development could probably have begun sooner.

At the March meeting considering the change, Cr Olwen Searle said the Government’s request was ‘pedantic’ and the City did not intend to neglect the rest of Maddington.

The City wants to create what Mr Cowie has called a place of ‘lasting vitality and beauty’ in Maddington, with a pedestrian-friendly bus-rail interchange, by extending Blackburn Street.

This requires Albany Highway’s Olga Road intersection to be widened, but the pipes underneath, which are about 82 years through a 100-year predicted lifespan, prevent this.

Mr Cowie said at the meeting: ‘Certainly the pipeline’