Victoria Park: Transport options imperative to future Vic Park success

Tuesday panellists: Simon White, Nicole Lockwood, Ben Wtatt and Anthony Vuleta.
Tuesday panellists: Simon White, Nicole Lockwood, Ben Wtatt and Anthony Vuleta.

PLANNING for the future population and density growth in the Town of Victoria Park will be no walk in the park but adding further transport options, like a free CAT bus, will be key in the local government area’s development.

With the Town planning to reach 24,000 additional dwellings beyond 2050, chief executive Anthony Vuleta said at a business breakfast last week that developing local transport was integral to meet future growth and demand.

While presenting as a panellist at the Exploring the Economic Forecast for Vic Park breakfast at Optus Stadium, Mr Vuleta said the Town was planning to exceed the State Government’s minimum recommended density growth by almost 5000.

“Our local planning strategy reaches out to 24,000 in terms of a density target instead of the State government’s minimum recommendation of 19,200,” he said.

“That’s the second largest in a metropolitan area, second to City of Stirling.

“That plan looks at where that density is going to be located, it doesn’t mean it’s going to be a free for all, it’s in strategic locations helped and informed by our community.”

Mr Vuleta said Burswood peninsula had been an untapped resource when it came to development and that the racecourse area could include a 54-storey tower in the future, with the height only limited by the flight path of planes.

When asked about the possibility of having a free CAT bus operating along Albany Highway, Mr Vuleta said nothing was free but that the Town would continue to seriously investigate it.

“The Town has been looking at this for some time, we looked at extending the CAT service from Perth through the Town,” he said.

“We’ve also done some analysis in terms of our integrated movement network strategy that looks at where our ultimate needs in transport and multimodal movement is over time.

“Light rail, trackless tram and mass rapid transit as well as community busses and also a CAT-type bus are all on the agenda for us to have a look at.”

With the projected density the Town is aiming for, Mr Vuleta said having the same single mode of transport as a car would not be viable into the future.

“The way cars are going to be used in the future will be quite different and we need to make infrastructure and public transport facilities to actually accommodate that new population,” he said.

Victoria Park MLA Ben Wyatt said the problem of transport in the town was not “insurmountable” and that other local government areas had been creative with reducing required parking spaces by adding arrangements around ride sharing.

On a broader transport planning initiative, when asked if State Government would insist the negotiations between Qantas and Perth Airport to enable more direct international routes, Mr Wyatt in short said yes.

“This one is more of a commercial decision between Perth Airport and Qantas and the State is always happy to assist in anyway it can but I suspect there are commercial issues at play between both Qantas and Perth Airport that will need to be resolved among themselves,” he said.

“Suffice to say that the State is very keen to assist because of course the Forrestfield-Airport line and the station at the airport is built on the assumption that we’ve all been working towards and that is that everyone will be located at the international terminal.”

Mr Vuleta and Mr Wyatt were joined on the panel by Independent Economic Policy Advisor Dr Simon White and Lockwood Advisory director Nicole Lockwood.