Subiaco market Growers Lane canned


Left: Diep Tran with Home Base general manager Gino Premici.
Main picture: Andrew Ritchie        d450489
Left: Diep Tran with Home Base general manager Gino Premici. Main picture: Andrew Ritchie        d450489

Ms Tran, whose family operated TR & TR Fruit and Veg at the market for 12 years, said she was undeterred by the Subiaco Council’s rejection of her change-of-use application from showroom to shop last Tuesday night.

“We will take this higher up to the State Administrative Tribunal (SAT) and see if we can have the decision overturned,” Ms Tran said.

“With the community support and dynamic growth that is happening in this area, we want to open the doors and say, ‘hey, come in, Subiaco is open for business’.”

The Growers Lane concept includes a fruit and vegetable grocer, butcher, fish supplier, delicatessen, bakery, juice bar and dry goods.

City of Subiaco chief executive Don Burnett said there was “always differing opinion” between councillors regarding discretionary decisions.

“There was significant debate about the application of this use on this site. Council has made its decision, and the SAT will make a final determination on the matter,” he said.

Concern that the Growers Lane food market would take interest away from the high street was a driving force behind its rejection.

Councillors voted against the officer’s recommendation to conditionally approve the application.

They instead approved Cr Mark Burns’ motion to refuse 8-4.

“I am usually against sending matters to the SAT, but Home Base can afford to go to SAT,” Mr Burns said.

“Our first responsibility is to the town centre.”

Home Base general manager Gino Premici said revitalising Rokeby Road should not come at the expense of prohibiting new business.

“Our site draws tens of thousands of visitors every month, but it is not our job to then send them up to Rokeby Road,” Mr Premici said.

“We have already had people calling us to say: ‘We have property outside Subiaco, how do we get in touch with the Trans?’.

“That is so disappointing. We could just wipe our hands of this, say it is too hard and tell Diep to try somewhere else. But we’re not doing that. We love the Growers Lane vision and we want it here.”

Cr Julie Matheson said claims that the proposed market would benefit Subiaco’s CBD were unfounded.

“The number of Rokeby Road businesses who spoke against the development application is an indication of just how fragile the town centre is,” Cr Matheson said.

“Home Base is not a slowly dying area of Subiaco. It is a purpose-built showroom and warehouse centre that is very successful in attracting lots of visitors. Unfortunately, none of them seem to make the trip to Subiaco’s town centre.”

Ms Tran said former Station Street Markets customers were disappointed and surprised that the council had rejected her application.

“They don’t understand why the council thinks injecting new business would have a negative impact on Subiaco,” Ms Tran said.

The Western Suburbs Weekly is running a two-minute reader survey on the future of Subiaco.