The plans as they now stand are for a $120 million development precinct with basement parking, restaurants, fast food outlets, shops, a small bar, tavern, office and 240 homes over three buildings: a 24-storey Seddon building, the seven-storey Roberts building and the six-storey Rokeby building.
An indoor-outdoor public space on the ground level would house up to 50 street market stalls, a town square, ‘pocket park’ and permanent restaurants.
The proposed new markets would ‘reference, not repeat’ the past through a high roof and industrial-style beams and trusses.
Of 530 public submissions the council received on the proposal, there were 457 in support.
The vote was eight to four in favour of endorsing the proposal.
Mayor Penny Taylor told Gareth Parker on Radio 6PR’s Mornings program there was concern about height in the neighbourhood but in the end the council had decided that it had to look at the “big picture.”
“That site’s been vacant for 10 years,” she said. “Many, many people have been asking the council to do something.
“It’s really a vote for business confidence in Subiaco and so many people have contacted me this morning and said they are really excited to see something start happening there.”
She said the previous application for development was controversial even for being 16 storeys high, but while this was a 24-storey proposal the actual difference was 24 metres. This development also had a bigger diversity of apartment sizes, with more family-size apartments to be available.
The council’s focus had been on design outcomes, and the city’s design review panel had scored the project as 29 out of 30.
“As Perth progresses, we are going to be seeing bigger developments near railways stations and transport links with good quality design but making use of greater height,” she said.
“By going up, you can have more open space for community use. I can’t predict the future but appropriate density in places that can take it well will be a good thing, and good for the planet.”
Blackburne has previously told WAtoday they would like to start demolition and construction towards the end of 2019 at the latest.
Ms Taylor said she hoped the construction projects rolling out across the city in coming months and years would stimulate its economy.
Hundreds of people turned out last Thursday night for a council meeting at which councillors voted to adopt a new local planning scheme (LPS5) that will increase density in some parts of the city.
This decision followed an announcement earlier this month in which the state government released new “concept images” for the high-profile 35.6-hectare Subi East redevelopment area, including the old Princess Margaret Hospital site, Subiaco Oval and surrounds, the new Inner City College at Kitchener Park and West Leederville train station.
The potential for this area to accommodate new high-density housing was a major factor in the preservation of character areas in Daglish and Shenton Park.
The public can submit feedback on the “concept images” until March 1.
Emma Young covers breaking news with a focus on science and environment, health and social justice for WAtoday.