Perth: Residents say UWA’s second Forrest Hall project will create a ‘walled entrance’ to Matilda Bay

Artist’s impression of the view down on Forrest Hall stage one and two. Picture: Kerry Hill Architects
Artist’s impression of the view down on Forrest Hall stage one and two. Picture: Kerry Hill Architects

RESIDENTS will push back against further Forrest Hall development in Crawley at a City of Perth council meeting tonight.

The Perth commissioners will consider advice to send to the Department of Planning, Lands and Heritage about stage two of UWA’s Forrest Hall.

The proposed development will include nine scholar rooms, 65 short stay rooms, an office and function space, 38 car bays and 13 bicycle bays.

City of Perth Western Residents Association Inc president Anna Vanderbom said the expanded Forrest Hall would create a “walled entrance” into the Matilda Bay precinct.

“It’s going to block the beauty of the river that international tourists come for, and increase the traffic and parking problem,” she said.

“We’ve been happy up until now with the City of Perth planners consulting us, but not with UWA.”

A UWA spokesman said plans were progressing for the Crawley foreshore project, with Forrest Hall Stage 2 to be similar in looks and scale to Forrest Hall Stage 1.

“On current planning, construction would start in the second half of 2019 with a completion date of 2021 subject to receiving the necessary approvals,” he said.

“Access to the foreshore for neighbours will be maintained during construction, and the design of the project will result in improved public access to the Swan River.”

The spokesman said as plans progressed UWA would communicate with the community, and that the university was currently consulting directly with stakeholders in adjoining properties.

At last week’s briefing session, Commissioner Andrew Hammond said the City had received some comments from locals about problems with the site.

Commissioner Gaye McMath said she drove past the Forrest Hall site every day, and wanted to add impact statements adding all potential transport issues and impact on adjacent users.

“This location is heavily used by other features, including Somerville Auditorium, people viewing Matilda Bay and water sports,” she said.