Call to shelve rezoning

Elsie and Bernard Cooke are supportive of the push to hold on to their local library.
Elsie and Bernard Cooke are supportive of the push to hold on to their local library.

The Friends want the Shire of Mundaring to reverse a decision to rezone the Scott Street, Greenmount, site from public to residential use, clearing the way to sell the land for 220sq m housing lots.

An information session about an alternative library development nearby will be held on Wednesday from 6pm to 7pm at Boya Hall, on the corner of Scott Street and Clayton Road.

Work on the $8.5 million, state-of-the-art library and community hall in Boya will begin in September, with completion due in November, 2016.

Shire chief executive Jonathan Throssell said the Greenmount library would remain open until the Boya facilities were completed.

He said construction of the new community hub was not dependent on the sale of the Scott Street site.

Dr Hughes said while the all-new facilities in the neighbourhood suburb were welcome, elderly residents had moved near the Greenmount community hub to be within walking distance of their local library, hall and park.

He said the Greenmount site had huge potential for new uses, such as an information-technology centre, and it made no sense to get rid of community assets, particularly if the aim was to provide more housing for older and disabled people locally.

�If we keep and enhance those facilities, more people will be inclined to move to the area, which is a win-win for the council,� he said.

Dr Hughes said The Men�s Shed had expressed an interest in the Scott Street site for a future building and had offered to maintain the Greenmount library and help construct a community garden and playground for the neighbourhood.

�It�s vital ratepayers inform themselves about why the council wants to sell off our land, rather than save it for future community use,� he said.

�Even more important is that ratepayers should either call their councillors or write their objections.�

Dr Hughes urged the Shire to consider Department of Planning recommendations in the document Liveable Neighbourhoods.

�Sites for community purposes � such as community centres, meeting halls, branch libraries � are increasingly important to community development and to provide public open space that is a safe walking distance from houses,� Dr Hughes said.