Waterland off

MAYLANDS Waterland will not reopen this year.

“Maylands Waterland as we know it is gone,” Bayswater councillor Catherine Ehrhardt reported with sadness this week, after councillors voted not to open the crumbling facility for the 2019-20 summer season.

“The city’s not going to be doing the refurbishment.”

She says the Maylands Waterland Working Group which she chairs “is still working through potential options for the site… [but] we’re not going to get an identical facility”.

She and fellow south ward councillor Elli Petersen-Pik had both wanted to keep it open but the council’s search for funding came up short.

“I loved Maylands Waterland. I’ve been going since it was built,” Cr Ehrhardt said.

By not opening it this year the city can shunt $205,800 into a Waterland redevelopment fund, which will bring it up to nearly $2 million.

Quotes for refurbishing Waterland ranged from $3.2m up, and $1.5m of the council’s cash is from its “public open space fund”.

According to state government rules Waterland wouldn’t qualify for that funding because it’s ticketed, bringing in about $214,000 a year which partly offsets the $327,000 running costs.

Cr Petersen-Pik got support for his motion that the council “reaffirms its commitment to redevelop Maylands Waterland as a family friendly water-based park at the Maylands Foreshore Reserve” and that they authorise the CEO to “progress the project in accordance with the timeline presented in the report, aiming for some of the redeveloped facilities to be open to the public by November 2021”.

“I have already received some feedback from quite a lot of residents who are sceptical about the city’s commitment to build a new water park to replace Waterland, and they are very concerned that the closure will be permanent and nothing else will happen on site. This concern was also mentioned in the working group,” Cr Petersen-Pik said.

“This is why I think it’s crucial to stress our intentions and signal to our residents that we are serious about moving forward with the project.”

by DAVID BELL

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