Wanneroo Council debating whether to put footy ahead of fire in building works

Bigger clubrooms are planned for Ridgewood Reserve.
An occupational health and safety audit identified the need for ablutions at two Rocks Fire Station.
Bigger clubrooms are planned for Ridgewood Reserve. An occupational health and safety audit identified the need for ablutions at two Rocks Fire Station.

THE construction timeframe for Ridgewood Reserve’s clubroom extension sparked debate about delaying additions to Two Rocks fire station at this month’s Wanneroo council meeting.

At the August 16 meeting, councillor Sabine Winton proposed an amendment to bring forward the construction timeline for the Ridgewood extension.

However, the City’s administration said accommodating that would mean delays to the ablutions block and meeting room proposed for the Two Rocks Volunteer Bush Fire Brigade facility.

Cr Winton said she understood the Quinns Districts Amateur Football Club, or Bulls, wanted the project progressed “as fast as possible” after it dropped its push for a 200sqm extension rather than the 100sqm proposed by the City .

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She said adopting the alternative schedule, for construction from April to September 2017 rather than July to November 2017, would also be less disruptive to groups using the reserve in summer, including little athletics and cricket. “Either option is going to be a disruption to the winter sport of football,” she said.

Assets director Harminder Singh said the fire station addition was due next March but would need to be delayed to accommodate the Ridgewood project.

Last month, the council agreed to |reject all tenders for the fire |station addition because the quotes exceeded the budget, ranging from $430,000 to $1.13 million. Instead they tasked staff with seeking more competitive quotes.

At the August 16 meeting, community and place director Fiona Hodges said the need for upgrades at the fire station was identified through an occupational health and safety inspection 12 to 18 months ago.

Community safety and emergency manager Alan McColl said the inspection “highlighted a number of deficiencies with what was required to bring the station up to scratch”.

Mrs Hodges said the ablutions block would help “decontaminate volunteer fire- fighters”.

Councillors debated why staff resources prevented the City from undertaking both projects simultaneously and whether another project could be delayed instead of the fire station build. “Surely we’ve got capacity to tender and have them built concurrently?” Cr Dianne Guise said.

Cr Nat Sangalli asked staff to consult groups that used Ridgewood Reserve in summer and the fire brigade about when construction should take place.