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Urbnsurf forced to find new location for Perth wave pool

The Western Australian State Government has rejected Urbnsurf’s application to use public land at Alfred Cove to build a Wavegarden Cove and their Urbnsurf Perth project.

At issue is a portion of the project at Tompkins Park in the City of Melville that requests a section of public land.

Urbnsurf’s plan was rejected by Lands Minister Ben Wyatt. In a statement Mr Wyatt said, “While I admire the enthusiasm of the developers we must remember that it is land owned by the community, and without local support it is impossible to justify locking future generations out of the space which was designated for public recreation and constant use.”

That space is currently used by the Melville Bowling Club (among others) who grew vocal in their fight against the wave pool project.

Urbnsurf’s plans above and the Google Maps image of the same space below

We contacted Urbansurf who expressed their frustration with the decision. Founder Andrew Ross reiterated that the wave pool would have added a unique and compelling destination to Perth, particularly at the Tompkins Park location.

“Urbnsurf is deeply disappointed in yesterday’s decision by the WA Government that will require a new central location to be identified in order to develop a surf park as was proposed for Melville,” said Ross. “The project had approval from the Environmental Protection Authority, a long-term lease agreement with the City of Melville to use the land at Tompkins Park, and a Development Application ready for submission.”

Despite the state’s decision, it looks like government support remains for Urbnsurf Perth.

When breaking the news to Andrew Ross, Minister Wyatt expressed enthusiasm for the project, going so far as to assure Ross he was conveying his support to WA Premier Mark McGowan.

“When Minister Wyatt advised Urbnsurf of his decision yesterday he expressed his personal enthusiasm for the surf park,” said Ross. “Urbnsurf welcomes these personal assurances, and the offer made by the Minister to work with the company to identify and secure an alternative central location for a surf park in Perth.”

Urbnsurf Perth researched many locations before picking Tompkins Park as the most likely to succeed. The key factor being it’s a central location and easily accessible to locals and visitors alike.

“While some people did not believe Tompkins Park was the best place for a wave,” added Ross. “it is important to recognise that Perth’s small population (relative to other cities) means the financial viability of this project relies on the support of not only surfers and the broader community, but also tourism visitors.”

Urbnsurf said they look forward to working with the WA Government to announce a new location.

The company also released 3D plans of the proposed park.


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