Categorized | Inner Perth

Heirisson dream unravels

CHRIS THOMSON

EXCLUSIVE: An ambitious masterplan for Heirisson Island championed by City of Perth mayor Lisa Scaffidi has fallen over, and a footbridge to the island is likely to be deferred.

Papers to be considered by the city council on Tuesday night reveal the plan and bridge – first hyped by Ms Scaffidi in 2008 – are too hot for her council to handle.

After a funding plea to the Federal Government fell on deaf ears, the city has failed to garner the $5 million in non-council cash it says it needs to get the pedestrian bridge built.

Twelve months ago the council endorsed the most expensive bridge submission – a joint tender between global companies Conybeare Morrison and Cardno.

Now, city planners are recommending the walkway be delayed another six months in the hope the state government will chime in with some spondoolies.

The planners also recommend that $10.3 million of works slated for the island be scaled right back.

More middling plans would see works at the southern end of the island only, as opposed to the original north and south overhaul in the pictured plan.

A Department of Indigenous Affairs clearance for the bridge will lapse and need to be reapplied for if a new design is decided upon.

Ms Scaffidi has resigned from the board of a sculpture park planned for Heirisson and the council planners have recommended that the city fish around for a more junior replacement.

One ray of hope, say the planners, is that after recent lobbying by the sculpture park committee, the government has indicated support for a Heirisson revamp.

The planners say the government would be willing to consider a $5 million handout to improve the island’s landscape and infrastructure, and between $2 million and $3 million for the bridge.

This would leave the bridge at least $2 million underfunded.

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