THE City of Wanneroo will investigate alternative sites for a southern suburbs library and community facility amid protracted negotiations to secure a Kingsway Shopping Centre site.
At its December meeting, the council agreed to ask the chief executive Daniel Simms to investigate alternative sites and present a further report once concept designs were developed.
According to a council report, development of another library had been planned for a long time, with the intended location a community purpose site at the Madeley shopping centre.
The report said the City invited architectural consultancies to submit proposals in 2016.
“Bollig Design Group Pty Ltd was subsequently engaged to prepare concept design plans for the proposed development of a library facility at various locations within the Kingsway Shopping Centre precinct,” it said.
The report said the City was involved in legal proceedings with the centre site owner, Tah Land Pty Ltd, and seeking to enforce terms of the deed that required it to subdivide and transfer the site to the City.
“Nothing in the deed prevents the City from procuring an alternative site to establish a library and community facility in the area nor would undertaking such action prejudice the current legal proceedings,” it said.
“Considering the protracted process of litigation, administration has undertaken preliminary investigations into alternative development sites within the South Ward that have the capacity to accommodate a new library or community facility.”
Councillor Brett Treby said he was excited by the opportunity given the frustration of the process during the December council briefing session.
“This presents us with a magnificent opportunity to look at one or two iconic sites,” he said.
At the meeting, Cr Domenic Zappa said it gave the City opportunities to “take the notion of community library to the next level”.
“There are some unique and bespoke sites in the South Ward,” he said.
The alternative site would need to be at least 3000sq m, preferably Crown Land and zoned appropriately.
The City had allocated $305,345 in the 2018-19 budget for the design documentation and approvals for the facility, with the long-term financial plan listing $311,249 in 2019-20 for detailed design, then $3.4 million each in 2020-21 and 2021-22 for construction.