City development on a roll

Artist impressions of Perth City Link (above) and Riverside developments.
Artist impressions of Perth City Link (above) and Riverside developments.

Speaking to the Guardian Express, Mr Kinsella said the opportunities for development in Perth had come on the back of a strong economy and sustained population growth.

Quoting recent ABS figures, he said Perth’s population had increased by almost 70,000 people last year.

‘That is the population of Mandurah coming to WA in one year,’ he said.

‘That population growth is increasing demand for roads, schools and hospital beds.

‘It is a very difficult scenario for any government to accommodate that level of growth.’

Mr Kinsella said the MRA’s role in helping Perth adjust was to look at different ways to accommodate people.

‘If you look across Australia, there are no other cities doing anywhere near the sort of development that Perth is doing ,’ he said.

‘It is a generational high point and a lot is happening at one time.’

The government organisation has responsibility for eight key areas within the City, including Elizabeth Quay, Perth City Link, Riverside and the Perth Cultural Centre.

Each area has its own master plan, with a mix of commercial, residential and hotel development, but Mr Kinsella said the guiding principle behind each was similar.

‘We want to create a place people will enjoy, where they will come out of their apartments and office towers and enjoy the area,’ he said.

‘What typically happens around the world is if the locals go to a place and they like it, then when visitors come to that place they come out and enjoy it as well.’

Mr Kinsella said private investments within each project area and beyond it, such as the Brookfield Plaza, were also important in developing the city.

‘I think Perth has a critical mass now that its sustained growth is locked in and that the trick for people like ourselves and the City of Perth and other government agencies is that we continue to understand what the market is wanting and making sure we maintain Perth as a very liveable city,’ he said.