YELLAGONGA Regional Park and northern train stations will soon feature smart technology.
The cities of Joondalup and Wanneroo have received $867,000 from the Federal Government’s inaugural Smart Cities and Suburbs Program to better manage and protect Yellagonga’s biodiversity-rich wetlands while Wanneroo was also awarded $1 million for The Rail Smart Program.
The use of smart environmental sensors, satellites and drones at Yellagona will allow the cities and their partners to measure and monitor the park’s environmental conditions in near real time, ensuring timely action can be taken to maintain amenity and better make decisions for the health of the wetlands.
In addition to the Federal Government’s contribution, the cities of Joondalup and Wanneroo, ECU, the departments of Water and Parks and Wildlife and another entity will co-contribute $1.2 million to the project.
Wanneroo Mayor Tracey Roberts said Yellagonga Regional Park, which was 13km long and covered about 1400ha (compared to Kings Park at 400.6ha), held “considerable historical and cultural significance”.
“The City is committed to improving the health and wellbeing of its community and environment through fully embracing smart technologies,” she said.
“The enhanced data collected from Yellagonga will help to improve environmental management practices across the City’s diverse array of environmental assets.”
Joondalup Mayor Albert Jacob said as well as the environmental benefits, smart monitoring would have social benefits including “better quality of life for nearby residents with the opportunity to better control midge populations through improving predictions of outbreaks and triggers”.
“This is an exciting project with improved opportunities to deliver economic benefits through eco-tourism development by monitoring visitor numbers and usage of the park to inform planning of more appropriate recreational infrastructure,” he said.
Moore MHR Ian Goodenough said he was “pleased to support the environmental work of the Friends of Yellagonga” and commended the cities for “their work in looking after the area”.
“Minimising pollutants and nutrients such as fertilisers from water run-off protects the health of the wetlands and benefits the entire community,” he said.
“In addition, issues such as the falling water table and midge infestation need to be addressed.”
The Rail Smart Program will use smart technology to analyse public transport data gathered from train users at Clarkson, Butler and Joondalup stations and the terminating Mandurah station.
This data will be used to inform the design of the future stations of Alkimos, Eglinton and Yanchep.
“Establishing activity centres that are in close proximity and easily connected to our train stations is key to the future growth of the City and part of the plan to deliver 100,000 local jobs,” Mrs Roberts said.
“This funding will enable us to approach the development of the activity centres with the right information to deliver the best outcomes for residents and attract the businesses, visitors and tourists, in addition to creating much-needed local employment opportunities on the scale we are targeting.”
The Rail Smart Program will be undertaken in partnership with the Planning and Transport Research Centre, ECU, UWA, Curtin University, the Department of Transport and the Water Corporation.