THE City of Swan started work this morning on a road through Midland Oval as part of redevelopment plans.
Police were called when a man temporarily stood in front of a front-end loader before the area was roped off.
Up to 12 people watched the machine work, including those against the extension of The Avenue through the oval as part of the City’s 11ha New Junction precinct development.
The City said construction of the limestone road would take up to five days before the start of development at Lot 4, The Avenue.
Swan Mayor David Lucas said the next stage of New Junction was vital in building a vibrant, strong and exciting Midland for the next generation of families.
“This transformational project will connect residential, commercial, entertainment and recreation spaces, and bring people together,” he said.
“This year marks 50 years since the project was first mooted, and has been the subject of many years of community consultation, so it’s very important to see this exciting project move forward.
“Council voted on April 11, 2018 to instruct the City to proceed with these road works, as part of a resolution that also saw the public open space within the precinct increase to 2.3ha.
“This is the second council resolution approving the commencement of these works – the first being council’s adoption of the Sale and Development Agreement of Lot 4, The Avenue in November 2015.
“The Joint Development Assessment Panel approved the construction of the proposed eight storey building which will include apartments, shops and commercial suites on March 2, 2018 and the WA Planning Commission approved the subdivision of the precinct on March 26, 2018.
“With all necessary approvals in place, it’s great to see work finally getting underway.”
Save Midland Oval supporters hit Facebook to criticise the City and accuse it of bullying ahead of an electors’ meeting to discuss the redevelopment plans on June 18.
“The Save Midland Oval community have no intentions to interfere or become violent with workers but ask the Minister to intervene to suspend works,” one post said.
They also claimed the Local Government Minister David Templeman was investigating the City over the redevelopment.
A senior media adviser for Mr Templeman said “it is not an investigation”.
“The Department of Local Government is reviewing the City’s processes to ensure that there has been no breach of the Local Government Act,” she said.
Swan chief executive Mike Foley said the City entered into the Sale and Development Agreement with Demol Investments Pty Ltd after ensuring it had fully complied with s3.59 of the Local Government Act.
“As is usual for commercial agreements for the sale and development of land, this contract is confidential,” he said.
Mr Foley said earlier this month the special electors’ meeting would discuss all aspects of the Midland Oval Redevelopment Masterplan, “including public open space and the business plan”.