The future of Shelley beach remains a sticking point for residents, with potential development in the area still a priority issue for residents’ groups.
The City of Canning is currently hosting a series of community consultation sessions with resident’s groups, ostensibly to gauge a general perspective in the interest of developing the area.
Yet Riverton, Rossmoyne, Shelley Residents Association president Peter Clayton said he believes the workshops, feedback sessions and “place making workshops” have done little to give an indication of what the City’s plans are.
“From the Residents Association’s point of view at the present time, I don’t believe there’s a yes or no on the topic,” he said.
“In other words, we haven’t made a decision to support development on Shelley Beach Foreshore and I don’t believe it would be fair for us to, as no-one really has a grasp on what the plans, if there are plans, are.”
Mr Clayton said there would be little interest in what the City has called the Shelley Beach Master Plan unless some form of concrete idea was put forward to the public.
“Personally, I look at these workshops that they’ve had, and I don’t think they lead anywhere,” he said.
“It seems like a lot of the time they’re asking questions for answers they already have.”
Mr Clayton said there was already concerns about traffic management and parking at Shelley Beach, and that those issues would not be improved by more development.
“The traffic situation is not good and from what I’ve heard from residents who live very close to the foreshore, it has only increased and will very likely increase even more with more development,” he said.
Canning Councillors Patrick Hall and Ben Kunze, who have long been advocates for developing the area, have pushed the consultation on Shelley beach development.
Mr Hall said the consultation was not about forcing anything on the people of Canning, but extending an opportunity to make a significant impact on future plans.
“The views of residents were clearly expressed in the comprehensive survey sent in 2017 year to every household in Rossmoyne and Shelley,” he said.
“Residents overwhelmingly voted in favour of enhancing the current amenities at Shelley foreshore with more shade options, a better playground, additional barbeques and more than 66 per cent of those surveyed want a café.
“The City is now engaging with all of Canning’s residents, not just those from Rossmoyne and Shelley, in a series of workshops and public meetings to better understand their views and I genuinely encourage residents to involve themselves in the process.”
Mr Hall said he understood any reservations about how development may affect the heritage of the area but that development was a necessary aspect of keeping the region up-to-date.
This is a once in a generation opportunity for the community to enhance Shelley Beach Park for the benefit of all of those who come after us,” he said.
“Our population is ageing, and if Riverton, Rossmoyne and Shelley’s primary schools are to continue to thrive then we need to ensure that we offer the type of lifestyle choices that will attract young families into the area to live.”