Scarborough Beach has been a popular spot for beachside recreation for generations of Western Australians. However despite the idealistic coast line, Scarborough Beach has never been considered a premium destination for locals or tourists. Over the past few years, the Scarborough Beach area has been experiencing significant investment decline with an increasing reputation for anti-social behaviour. The lack of investment in Scarborough Beach has left the area with ailing infrastructure, issues with parking and traffic congestion, and minimal retail and commercial development.
In the past, the planning and management of Scarborough Beach front has been the sole responsibility of the local government authority, the City of Stirling. This changed in 2013 when Collin Barnett announced a $30 million commitment towards revitalising the Scarborough Beach front. The Metropolitan Redevelopment Authority (MRA) is the State Government agency responsible for administering the redevelopment. The MRA is working in collaboration with the City of Stirling, who have pledged an additional $27.4 million to project.
On the 20th of January 2015, Premier Colin Barnett released the draft Scarborough Beach Master Plan for public comment. The draft plan identified four precincts within the Scarborough Beach front area. The first precinct is the ‘Scarborough Square.’ The Scarborough Square precinct is at the heart of the redevelopment. The precinct intends to highlight the existing shops, cafes, restaurants; and incorporate new areas to facilitate community events and activities. The second precinct is the Clock Tower precinct, which is located at the entry of Scarborough Beach. The Clock Tower Precinct will act as a welcoming and inviting entrance to the Scarborough Beach area. The precinct will include improvements to the current landscaping, increased seating and shading, and improved accessibility and connectivity for pedestrians.
The third precinct is the Beach Hub precinct. The Beach Hub precinct will include renovating the Scarborough Surf Lifesaving Club and developing a bar/restaurant and a children’s water playground. In addition, the City of Stirling has proposed a $26 million ocean side swimming pool for the Beach Hub, however this has not been confirmed by the MRA. The last precinct is the Sunset Hill precinct. The Sunset Hill precinct is being created to maximise the aesthetic values of the Beach. The precinct will offer unimpeded oceans views through the implementation of rolling lawns leading down to the beach, and a modern multi-generational park.
In addition to the four precincts, the draft master plan aims to increase walkability, alleviate traffic congestion, encourage private investment and improve the diversity and standard of accommodation currently available. The Scarborough Beach plan was drafted with consideration from 3,000 people who provided community feedback. It is hoped that the plan will be finalised mid-2015, with construction expected to commence shortly after. The project is expected to take up to three years to complete.
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