What is happening at the former Shenton Park Hospital site?
Work is currently underway to redevelop this 15 hectare site into a modern, well-designed urban community. Following an 18-month community and stakeholder engagement program, the draft planning framework documents were released for public comment in early 2016 and approved by the Minister for Planning in December 2016.
Montario Quarter has been designed to balance the views of the community and policy requirements, and will reflect the culture, history and existing landscape of the site, while providing a range of modern housing options.
Demolition of the former hospital buildings is now complete and stage 1 is open to the public.
Works are currently underway to rehabilitate the Woodland Precinct and upgrade Orton Road.
Why is this site being developed for housing?
Perth’s population is expected to grow to 3.5 million people by 2050. As Western Australia’s land development agency, one of our responsibilities is to ensure the availability of land for jobs and land for living for current and future generations.
In achieving this objective, infill development is a key strategy to help make the most of existing infrastructure. This includes access to public transport, established work opportunities, businesses, and health and education facilities. We have an excellent track record in transforming underutilised government land including the nearby award winning redevelopment of the Perry Lakes Stadium.
Located close to the city and just 400m from Shenton Park train station, Montario Quarter is helping to address Perth’s rapid population growth, whilst also improving local amenity and housing diversity.
What level of density is being envisaged for the site?
The development will be sympathetic to the existing community and its location, while also being responsive to the state and local government planning requirements and our city’s rapidly growing population.
We have spent more than 18-months consulting the surrounding community, businesses, state and local government to determine the best outcomes for this development site.
Under the approved plans, there will be a range of building heights across the site.
The apartment developments will be required to comply with Design Guidelines, which will ensure that the future developments are responsive to the surrounding developments including existing residents, Shenton College, Victoria House and the community open spaces.
How many homes will be built in the new development and how many people will live there?
As part of the planning process a minimum of 1,100 dwellings has been included within the Improvement Scheme’s development requirements in order to achieve the project’s vision and broader infill development targets. We have also tested a scenario of 1,600+ new homes to ensure there is sufficient local infrastructure capacity to cater for medium to long term market demand, meeting housing needs both now and into the future.
Ultimately more than 2,000 new residents will call Montario Quarter home.
How will this development fit in with the local community?
The Montario Quarter Master Plan has been designed to fit within the context of the surrounding community. This includes improved pedestrian and bicycle links through the site to Shenton Park train station and Selby Street, as well as stepped-back height for buildings adjacent to parks, residents and Shenton College.
Design Guidelines are also in place for both the public realm and proposed buildings to ensure a quality look and feel throughout the development.
What new amenities are being planned?
In addition to a range of housing options, the development will feature a new shopping precinct surrounding Victoria House, including up to 5,500sqm of retail floor space. When complete, Montario Quarter will be a lush green estate, with tree lined streets and more than 25% of the site dedicated to public open space, including retained bushland, walking trails, a nature-play area and exercise and playground equipment.
The recently announced plans for the first two development sites will also bring new exciting community spaces to the estate.
Iris Residential and Primewest’s mixed-use development will feature ground floor retail and commercial, including a supermarket and other boutique retail offerings, as well as apartments. Visit the Shenton Quarter website for more information.
The repurposing of the heritage-listed Victoria House will be undertaken by Hesperia (formerly Fini Group), and is planned to include a mix of one, two and three bedroom homes. See the Victoria House webpage for the latest details.
Heritage and environment
Will the heritage of the site be protected?
A key objective in the design and development of Montario Quarter is to respect the rich history of the site. In line with this, a Conservation Management Plan has been prepared to guide future development.
The former use of the site as a place of healing has been an important element in the design of the site. The avenue of Queensland Box trees, as well as parts of Victoria House and the G Block façade and courtyard will be preserved, and the Heritage Council will continue to be consulted throughout the redevelopment to make sure it reflects the historical significance of the former hospital.
Victoria House will become the centrepiece of Montario Quarter. The G Block façade and courtyard will also be incorporated into a new development, with the existing walkway linkage to Victoria House retained in the central parkland.
The Master Plan shows cleared areas through the Woodland Precinct – why is this?
In line with State Planning Policy 3.7 (Planning in Bushfire Prone Areas), retained bushland close to residents is required to be contained within 2,500sqm cells, with a 20m separation between each of these cells, in order to reduce the risk of bushfires.
As an infill development, these bushfire reduction measures will not only impact future residents and businesses within Montario Quarter, but also the vulnerable health users currently residing in the surrounding development area.
The Master Plan is considered to be a balanced outcome, achieving the retention of significant vegetation, necessary bushfire protection and the need for infill development along a key public transport corridor.
What will happen to the site’s bushland?
The western portion of the site contains bushland varying from completely degraded to very good; an existing carpark; drainage sump; and access ways.
In order to balance the environmental considerations with management of bushfire hazard and facilitation of three development sites in this area, parts of the bushland will need to be cleared.
To minimise impact on bushland and to improve public access to the existing bushland area, building footprints and roads in the Montario Quarter Master Plan have been consolidated and realigned, including building on an existing car park.
Areas of bushland will be retained and rehabilitated, resulting in a net increase of the amount of ‘very good’ quality bushland.
Has Montario Quarter received any environmental approvals?
We have worked with State and Federal environmental agencies throughout the planning process for Montario Quarter.
The WA Environmental Protection Authority assessed the Improvement Scheme resulting in a ‘scheme not assessed (with advice)’ outcome, meaning that the EPA considers that the scheme amendment is unlikely to have a significant effect on the environment and does not warrant formal assessment under Part IV of the Environmental Protection Act.
We also self-referred the Improvement Scheme for Federal approval under the Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Act 1999, which determined this was not a controlled action.This decision means that there is not likely to be a significant impact and therefore has approval to proceed under the EPBC Act.
Why does some of the bushland need to be cleared?
Bushfires are an inherent part of life in Australia. We have seen too many fires risking lives and properties in recent years, and in some parts of our State, this threat is only increasing.
As a result of this threat, a mandatory bushfire policy (State Planning Policy 3.7) was introduced in 2015, which requires all new developments close to bushland to include measures to reduce this risk to people and property.
In line with this policy, development at Montario Quarter has been designed to maximise the amount of bushland that can be kept and improved, while balancing other community needs, such as safety and recreation spaces, and maintaining a low bushfire risk for nearby residents and businesses. This includes reducing the risk for apartment sites within Montario Quarter, as well as the existing businesses and vulnerable residents surrounding the estate.
We understand that not everyone will agree with our approach. However, we have sought to provide a safe, balanced outcome for the community as a whole.
Does this mean environmental protection is no longer of importance?
Not at all. Environmental protection is always an important consideration in our developments. However, this also needs to be balanced with jobs, housing affordability, community well-being and safety.
Work is currently underway to rehabilitate the Woodland Precinct. This includes removal of the existing infrastructure, followed by the re-seeding of native flora and planting of 400 new trees later this year. We have also completed a two-year seed collection program, so the bushland can be further enhanced with seeds native to the site.
When complete, there will be a net increase of 200+ trees across the site and an increase in the overall tree canopy cover. A quarter of the site has been set aside for public open space, including parklands, playgrounds, nature play areas and retained bushland.
Montario Quarter has also received 6-star Green Star Communities accreditation, recognising it as a leader in sustainable developments.
Could the bushfire risk be managed in another way?
Under the bushfire regulations, areas close to bushland are allocated a Bushfire Attack Level (BAL) rating, according to the level of risk. The clearing in the Woodland Precinct allowed this risk to be lowered, reducing the BAL rating from ‘extreme’ (previous rating) to ‘moderate’ or ‘low’.
While a higher BAL rating is possible, this would have a significant impact on surrounding residents and future development.
Throughout the planning of Montario Quarter, we have sought to provide the best outcome for the community – balancing environmental factors with social, economic and safety outcomes.
Traffic and access
What impact will the development have on local traffic?
Traffic modelling studies incorporating more than 1600 dwellings have been completed to ensure the development can be supported using the existing road network into the future. The estate also provides easy access to the Shenton Park Train Station and several key bus routes, encouraging residents to reduce their reliance on cars.
How will traffic access the future development?
When complete, four roads will provide access to homes and businesses within Montario Quarter, including one road off Lemnos Street and three roads off Selby Street.
In order to facilitate this, the existing Nash/Selby Street intersection has been upgraded from lights to a roundabout to allow for the fourth leg of the intersection within the development site.
Extensive pedestrian and cycling links will also be provided to encourage the use of bicycles and public transport.
Why was a roundabout required for the Nash Street intersection?
In order to provide sufficient access to Montario Quarter, the Nash Street intersection needed to be upgraded to allow for 4-way traffic.
Prior to modifying or installing any signalised intersection, Main Roads WA requires consideration of a roundabout option. This policy is provided in detail in the MRWA Guidelines for the Selection of Intersection Control.
Traffic studies have found that a roundabout is the most efficient way of maintaining traffic flow. As a result, modification of the existing signals was not supported by Main Roads WA and the intersection was converted to a roundabout.
How does the Nash Street roundabout impact pedestrians?
The safety of pedestrians and cyclists was a fundamental factor in the design of the Nash Street roundabout.
The existing signalised pedestrian crossing to the north of Nash Street will remain in place to allow safe access across Selby Street. The supervised school crossings on Lemnos Street and Stubbs Terrace will also remain in operation before and after school.
Planning and consultation
Why have single residential lots been included in the plan, when this land could be used to remove higher density from the Woodland Precinct?
Not everyone wants to live in an apartment – it’s as simple as that.
Developing infill sites in established suburbs, close to existing infrastructure, is about providing more housing options for the community. Yes, density is important and plays an essential role in ensuring homes for our growing population. But this shouldn’t be the only option.
Montario Quarter has been designed to incorporate a range of housing options, allowing future residents a choice of how they want to live.
The design is also sensitive towards Shenton College and the homes and businesses surrounding the estate, ensuring lower density and stepped-back building designs at the edges of the estate to reduce the impact on our neighbours.
What is the Western Australian Planning Commission’s (WAPC) role in the redevelopment?
In late 2014, DevelopmentWA requested that the WAPC make the site subject to Improvement Plan and Improvement Scheme as the preferred mechanism to coordinate the redevelopment. Improvement Plan No.43 – Shenton Park Rehabilitation Hospital was gazetted on 3 July 2015 and is now in effect. The Improvement Plan authorises the WAPC to advance planning and development of the area through an Improvement Scheme. The Gazettal of the Improvement Scheme on 17 January 2017 makes the WAPC the approving authority on all Development Applications associated with the Improvement Scheme.
As State Government’s land development agency, DevelopmentWA is facilitating the redevelopment in line with the approved Structure Plan and in consultation with members of the Shenton Park Steering Committee (City of Nedlands, City of Subiaco, Department of Planning and Department of Lands).
How will Local Government be involved?
The City of Nedlands and the City of Subiaco were members of the Shenton Park Steering Committee, and will continue to be actively engaged in the redevelopment of the Shenton Park Rehabilitation Hospital site.
What community consultation was undertaken during the planning for the redevelopment?
DevelopmentWA worked closely with local residents and key stakeholders over 18 months to shape the future redevelopment of this site. Community engagement has included:
Consultation with key stakeholder groups including state and local government and surrounding residents and businesses;
Extensive research on how the community values the site;
A 600 person survey;
A series of community and online forums to help shape the draft Master Plan;
A Co-Governance model, which included a range of key stakeholders and a Community Reference Group; and
A public comment period for the draft master plan, held outside of the statutory planning process
What is currently happening onsite?
The first stage of Montario Quarter is now complete and open to the public. Bring the family to enjoy a picnic under the trees, kick-about space and exercise and play equipment for the whole family.
The next stage of works includes rehabilitation of the Woodland Precinct and upgrade of Orton Road (along the northern boundary of the estate).
How long will the redevelopment take to complete?
We expect the development will take approximately 10 years to be fully completed. This includes the time from the start of demolition through to the completion of the final home dwelling.