AN alternative to the controversial URBNSURF wave park has emerged at the eleventh hour, after the Alfred Cove Action Group (ACAG) submitted its own proposal for the site on Friday.
The proposal calls for the existing Melville Bowling Club clubhouse structure to be retained and repurposed as a restaurant or café with the area to the south of the building used for community recreation, possibly in the form of a children’s playground.
The area to the north of the clubhouse, toward the river, would be cleared of all existing structures and fencing and restored to bushland for passive recreation.
In what appears to be a tongue-in-cheek dig at the City of Melville administration, the proposal floats naming the site Aubrey Silcox Reserve in honour of the mayor and chief executive.
ACAG is strongly opposed to the proposed wave park and has expressed environmental, social and commercial concerns about the project.
Spokesperson David Maynier said the group felt it had no choice but to submit its own proposal for the site.
“An alternative proposal is absolutely necessary because the wave park is totally out of place and an unacceptable use of that location,” he said.
“It is a Bush Forever site identified as having ecological significance and should be treated as such.
“Our proposal sits comfortably within all of the relevant State Government and City of Melville policy frameworks and gives Melville council something different to consider.”
The proposal itself acknowledges a café or restaurant would not generate anywhere near the estimated $700,000 per year ground lease of the wave park, which it suggests could be located elsewhere within the City of Melville.
“The Swan River Foreshore is a renowned and iconic public open space and should be maintained and protected for future generations for free access to all, and not as a source of revenue for the local authority,” the proposal reads.
“Any revenue, however small, is a bonus, and should always be subordinated to the primary use of the site as free public open space, not seen as a priority.”
Melville council is slated to decide whether to award the wave park a provisional ground lease at its ordinary council meeting on February 21.