DEFENCE Housing Australia (DHA) has started work transforming a prime site at Palm Beach in Rockingham into a new residential development for both defence members and the wider community.
The 3.7ha site, which was previously the Palm Beach Caravan Park, was rezoned by the City of Rockingham for residential development.
DHA has plans to build up to 350 apartments, with 145 to be retained for Australian Defence Force personnel.
DHA acting managing director Jan Mason said the aim was to undertake a careful reclamation of the site, maintaining as many of the healthy native trees as possible.
Ms Mason said DHA’s goal was to minimise disruption to neighbours during works, which included removal of the former caravan park’s ablution blocks, manager’s office and residence as well as hard stands.
“Between August and September last year, DHA hosted three community workshops with local residents and local organisations,” Ms Mason said.
“We welcomed input from attendees on a number of issues including community amenity, access and traffic around the site, the local environment and the likely housing to be built.
“It was terrific to get input from local people into the removal of exotic plant species and noxious weeds and how we can foster existing native mature trees on the site.
‘We are working to retain as many of the healthy, native trees on site as possible.”
Ms Mason said when planning a development, it hoped to create sustainable housing that meets the diverse needs of the modern defence member and the community.
“This development will create jobs, stimulate the local economy and attract new residents to the Rockingham area,” she said.
“Most importantly, it will provide for the future housing needs of defence members posting to HMAS Stirling and the greater Rockingham area.”
“We have made a six-year commitment to the community through this development,” Ms Mason said.
“That commitment will continue for many decades after the development is completed through our property management responsibilities with our defence tenants.”