Council: Nedlands meditation studio hoping for peaceful transition to West Leederville

Nick Rubinich (Meditation Facilitator) at Mindfulness Meditation Hub, which is run by volunteers - they're trying to relocate to West Leederville. Picture: Andrew Ritchie
Nick Rubinich (Meditation Facilitator) at Mindfulness Meditation Hub, which is run by volunteers - they're trying to relocate to West Leederville. Picture: Andrew Ritchie

VOLUNTEERS at a Nedlands meditation studio are hoping for a peaceful transition to new West Leederville premises after the next Cambridge council meeting.

Mindfulness Meditation Hub facilitator Nick Rubinich opened the studio at the end of 2016, and is looking to relocate from the one-room space.

“[The Nedlands studio] been really successful, and we’ve got a nice community starting to grow,” he said.

Mr Rubinich said the West Leederville space would be around six times the size of the current studio, allowing for a reception, small library and meditation space.

The group’s application to change 443 Vincent Street West’s use from an office to a health studio was recommended for approval at Tuesday’s development committee meeting, but Mr Rubinich requested changes to client and hour restrictions along with a longer approval period.

“This is a missed opportunity to help the community with their mental health and wellbeing,” he said at the meeting.

He said the sessions needed to be flexible around volunteers’ availability to facilitate classes.

Cr Jane Powell said the difficulty was that the committee did not have the amendments Mr Rubinich was proposing.

Along with conditions on hours and attendance, a one-year approval was proposed to allow the Town to come back and reassess in 12 months time.

The committee voted 5-0 to defer the application to Tuesday’s ordinary council meeting.

Mr Rubinich said the meditation studio had not expected the restrictions, but that a councillor and the Town administration had since reached out and were working with the group.

The meditation facilitator said while he understood the Town wanted to manage risk, the studio needed a longer guarantee than a year.

“We’re not for profit, and we rely on clients paying what they want; if we don’t have a five-year approval, we could be out of pocket about $30,000 a year,” he said.

Mr Rubinich said the application was now in a “much better position”, and if successful at the meeting, the new studio will open by the end of July.