Response to article in The West Australian – Re Point Peron

header HOPP page

See article –  500-pen marina sets sail
http://au.news.yahoo.com/thewest/a/-/wa/16931195/500-pen-marina-sets-sail/ (30th of April, 2013 – pg 4)

Our response;

It must be noted that a 500 pen marina has already been approved near the existing cafe strip (more to be said on this, but see the Port Rockingham http://www.portrockingham.com.au/).

The location of this proposed Mangles Bay Marina by Cedar Woods and Landcorp is over 1 kilometer from the existing shops and cafe precinct in the centre of Rockingham. With business the way it is these days, it makes you wonder how the existing businesses will fair with all of the extra competition?

They compare this development to the busy Hillarys Boat Harbour north of Perth, but it is a completely different situation?  The northern suburbs had nothing in the way of entertainment – ZERO – they had no where to go and they still don’t.  There are a few places dotted around North Beach way and if you go much further up the coast there is Mindarie.

Rockingham on the other hand is an all together different, they already have a developed foreshore and cafe strip.  People already go there for day trips, restaurants, fish and chips or an ice cream etc..

Where is the evidence to show that business on the Rockingham strip is so good that more competition is warranted? Will this turn the existing strip into a ghost town or the marina into a white elephant or both?

How well is Hillarys actually doing? How are other new marinas doing down that way?
I noticed that a nice gift/furniture shop at Hillarys has just had to halve its space, according to them, because “things are quiet”. Some shops are empty there? Sure it is busy on the weekends at Hillarys, but what about the rest of the week? There are empty restaurants around Fremantle’s Fisherman’s Wharf too.

Should the Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Rockingham be looking helping and advising their existing businesses and encourage making Point Peron into a regional park to attract more tourists and day trippers, rather than build a whole new precinct? This could be the Kings Park of the south or a Rottnest Island style tourist attraction with affordable accommodation for everyone to enjoy.

This Mangles Bay Marina development is all about selling off public land to make a canal housing development. It is another brazen public land grab. Point Peron is the last remaining northern facing coastal land and they want to divide it up and sell it for quick profits.

It is assumed that the government wants to sell off the land for housing and commercial interests to pay for the 500 pen marina.  But surely this is no excuse?  If they want to create a Hillarys Boat Harbor, all they have to do is extend it off the existing cafe strip.  It is a far more appropriate place for a marina and far less evasive and destructive.

If government land absolutely has to be sold off to pay for the 500 boat pens/marina, which the community has identified that it needs, then surely there is land that could be found in a less environmentally and culturally sensitive area?  Besides we need more affordable housing, not more McMansions apparently?

Mangles bay proposed site

Proposed site for the proposed canal development – Mangles Bay in Point Peron

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2 Responses to Response to article in The West Australian – Re Point Peron

  1. dianaryan says:

    Good morning
    I did a survey of business owners (ostensibly to do with climate change and sea levels rising, a university project) operating at Sorrento Quay, immediately to the left of Hillarys last year. It was an eye opener, as on beautiful days the area is filled with people. Yet, businesses in the area were struggling – exorbitant rents were just the start. Tourist bus operators were said to be given inadequate parking and seemed reluctant to bring people through, and businesses were greatly affected by how conservative the tourism dollar appears to be these days. As for reaction to climate change/sea levels rising, I was interested to hear almost all persons (owners, employees, patrons) were more or less resigned to the fact it was coming, but most believed it was going to occur beyond their lifetime, and that any action should be paid for governments. At the end of the day, despite glossy images in brochures, etc, I think most people and businesses, if not struggling, are constantly aware of current and recurrent pressures on them, so longer term prospects such as climate change are very hard to engender interest in for understandable reasons. Great blog, by the way.

    • Thanks for your comment, very interesting!

      The developers and media are all saying that a Hillays style marina would be great for business and tourism in Rockingham.

      But what they seem to be forgetting is that Rockingham already has a fully developed foreshore/entertainment/cafe strip precinct and tourist industry. The only reason Hillarys has enjoyed the success it has had, is because there was virtually nothing at all to compete with it in the northern suburbs along the coast. We have spoken to a few local business in Rockingham and many are really struggling, they are very concerned about this new development. I fail to see how competition from a whole new cafe precinct 1 km down the road would help them in this economic climate and with the boom coming to an end etc.? Who wants to visit a canal development? Surely Point Peron as a regional park is one of the draw cards?

      If it is essential that the area have a marina with 500 pens, then all they need is one built off the existing cafe strip in the sea off Wanliss Street. This would transform the existing area into what would be, in essence, a Hillarys style precinct (boats, beaches, cafes and shops).

      As you say Hillarys has many businesses that are struggling too, it is not all it is made out to be and the marina in Mandurah is really having issues as well. Did you see – How Mandurah hit a “boom” hurdle
      http://www.perthnow.com.au/business/mandurah-city-of-broken-dreams/story-e6frg2ru-1226381291918

      It must also be noted, that the Port Rockingham developer cannot find investors to invest in building the 500 pen marina (with a couple of cafes). So how will LandCorp and Cedar Woods find them? Boat pens bring in around $5k per year x 500 pens + the rent from a couple of venues (?). This is important because as far as we can see Cedar Woods does not have any obligation to build that side of the work (the “vibrant” cafes and boat pens, etc.). Yet, that is the ONLY side they and others are promoting.

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