Facelift for ‘white elephant’ lakes

BAYSWATER city council is considering spending up to $93,000 to beautify artificial lakes in Maylands that have become an eyesore.

Bungana and Brearley lakes were constructed from abandoned claypits, excavated during the operation of the Maylands brick kiln.

The lakes were part of a 300-property residential development in the late 1990s, designed to improve the quality of water entering the Swan River and create a habitat for fauna.

But recently the council has fielded around 20 complaints from locals worried that algal blooms, faulty lights, inoperative fountains and weeds are affecting their house prices.

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• Bungana and Brearley lakes in Maylands—needs some loving, say fed-up locals. Photo by Matthew Dwyer

“Officers have had further phone correspondence with some residents who articulated that their belief was that the city has not maintained some elements of the reserves in accordance with their expected service level,” wrote council officers. “There have been a number of complex management issues identified in this report in relation to the Maylands lakes.”

Local environmentalist John Williams says the lakes are a white elephant.

“My realistic view is they are what they are, a man-made relic of clay pits filled with water,” he says.

“It would be no surprise to me when the developers were allowed to build right up to edge of both clay pit lakes to attract expensive homes and residents wanting exclusive surroundings, the road drainage constructed was networked to discharge into the lakes.

“I consider the council will be throwing good ratepayer money into a pit that will never give these residents what they are wishing for.

“Just compare this with the canal projects at Mandurah which is just a much bigger version of this problem which to this day has never been fixed.”


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