Landsdale: Wanneroo Council approves environmental offset for Hardcastle Park development

Wanneroo Council approved environmental offset expenses for Hardcastle Park in Landsdale. Picture: Spookfish
Wanneroo Council approved environmental offset expenses for Hardcastle Park in Landsdale. Picture: Spookfish

DUBBED “hardbasket”, a long-awaited project to develop Hardcastle Park in Landsdale passed a bureaucratic phase this month.

Wanneroo Council approved an environmental offset package to develop the 1.16ha passive park and spending $212,303 to finish the $592,500 project at its November meeting.

The concept plan includes a central playground, junior play zone, birds nest swing and turf on the south west portion.

According to a council report, the City identified the site had significant native vegetation and the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation considered the environmental impacts on banksia woodlands would be significant.

As a result, the City proposed to fund a 0.53ha environmental offset site in Bindoon for $882.45, revegetate 0.25ha of degraded areas in Hardcastle Park for $257,314 over five years and maintain remnant banksia woodlands.

A concept plan for Hardcastle Park includes toddler play equipment, a birds nest swing, nature play elements and turf.

Councillor Domenic Zappa said he was excited to see “light at the end of the tunnel” for the park’s development.

Cr Zappa said while it wasn’t the biggest or prettiest park in Landsdale, it was very significant for residents.

He said developing it had been part of his election platform when first elected five years ago, but it had more complications than other passive parks and earned the nickname “hardbasket park”.

Cr Zappa said they had gone through “a number of hurdles to get a park that’s usable” for residents.

“There’s hope – once we tick off this compliance, we will get that elusive clearing permit and begin construction,” he said.

Cr Brett Treby compared it to the Roe 8 project in terms of the difficulty the City had getting approvals from the State Government.

Mayor Tracey Roberts said the facilities were “desperately needed by the community”.

Cr Hugh Nguyen said residents were justified in being angry, particularly those who settled in the area 10 to 15 years ago.

“What used to be little toddlers are now teenagers (who) have missed the opportunity to enjoy this park,” he said.

During public consultation in 2017, the City received 127 submissions with 100 of those supporting the concept plan.

A proposed timeframe in the November council agenda said construction would take place between July and November next year.

A 2015 fauna survey found four species had a moderate likelihood of using the park – southern brown bandicoot, Carnaby’s black cockatoo, forest red-tailed black cockatoo and rainbow bee-eater.

The City took over managing the park in February 2015.