Guildford residents win fight against McDonald’s after SAT appeal withdrawn

McDonald's has been given approval to build in Mundaring next to a heritage church
McDonald's has been given approval to build in Mundaring next to a heritage church

RESIDENTS campaigning against plans by McDonald’s to build a 24-hour restaurant in Guildford have won their super-sized fight with the fast food giant confirming yesterday it has withdrawn its appeal at the State Administrative Tribunal (SAT).

McDonald’s was appealing a decision by the Metro East Joint Development Panel (JDAP) in August to refuse its development application on the grounds it would have an adverse impact on the heritage values of Guildford as well as concerns over traffic, parking and the restaurant’s proximity to the local primary school.

In a joint statement Say No to McDonald’s in Guildford administrators Celeste de Saxe, Bronwyn Facer, Claire Scanlan, and Anita Rowell said the news was a welcome relief for residents.

“We want to say a huge thank you to the amazing community spirit and effort shown by the Guildford locals in fighting this development application,” the statement said.

“There are a lot of happy and relieved people here in Guildford today.

“It’s a real win for common sense over such an inappropriate location for a 24hr drive-thru.”

Attention is now expected to shift to seeking heritage listing for the town with the Heritage Council which would .

The City of Swan said it was supportive of the move and had already initiated a process to nominate the locality for listing on the State Register of Heritage Places.

The Heritage Council said the process to heritage list a precinct the size of Guildford required extensive consultation with stakeholders, including the City of Swan, residents and business owners to fully consider the benefits and impact of registration.

If listed, Guildford would join with the West End of Fremantle as a state heritage precinct in recognition of it being a special town of first settlement in 1829.

A McDonald’s spokesperson said they would continue to investigate other potential sites for a restaurant in the area.

“We’ve made the decision to withdraw our application to develop a restaurant on this particular site, however, we know there is significant local demand and we will continue to investigate other sites in Guildford and the surrounding area,” the spokeswoman said.

“We’re disappointed we weren’t able to reach an agreement with the City of Swan council, but the restrictive requirements proposed in relation to parking meant the site was not commercially viable for us to pursue any further.

“This is particularly frustrating given a previously approved development on this site provided far less parking than our proposal.

“We ask for the same consideration as any other developer and for our sites to be considered against relevant planning requirements.

“This restaurant would have employed more than 100 people from the local area and provided a number of other economic benefits.”