A world class integrated community wellness, education and recreation development

Information Update 22 January 2021

The City of South Perth’s proposed Recreation and Aquatic Facility (RAF) is set to be a world class integrated community wellness, education and recreation development located at the Collier Park Golf Course in Como.

The RAF model is like no other project undertaken in Australia and will set a new benchmark in wellness and leisure facilities. It will be combined with research and educational programs to offer facilities and programs to deliver primary health care and prevention to the broader community.

The facilities will include a traditional swimming pool, hydrotherapy pool, lecture and activity learning spaces, sports medicine and other treatment rooms, public golf facilities, public health club and a 6-8 court multipurpose indoor sporting centre, together with a shared administration Community House for state sporting associations and community groups.

The Project Definition Plan and an Operational Feasibility has been completed and the City of South Perth Council has committed to match the Commonwealth Government commitment of $20 million to the project.

To date project partners include Curtin University, SportWest and Clontarf Aboriginal College.

The City has a developed the RAF concept in consultation with the Council of the Ageing WA (COTA), SEDA College WA, the Telethon Kids Institute and Curtin Education Community - a network of 15 schools located with proximity to Curtin University and the proposed RAF.

Negotiations are taking place with a number of commercial partners including potential operators, an indoor climbing facility provider, hospitality services and potential naming right sponsors.

An aquatic facility has been under consideration for over a decade within the City of South Perth, with a number of polls, surveys, studies and reports indicating community support.

One of the key strategies of the City’s Strategic Community Plan 2020-2030 is to plan for and promote the development of recreation and aquatic facilities to service City of South Perth needs.

The community demand, along with the lack of indoor sporting facilities in the City and the need for the City to address the ongoing viability and long-term use of George Burnett Leisure Centre (GBLC) and Collier Park Golf Course, has led the City to initiate the RAF project.

Patronage is conservatively estimated at over 1 million annually and the RAF will draw from a large catchment including from the areas of Victoria Park, St James, Bentley, Riverton, Shelley, Manning, Como and South Perth.

The total estimated project cost is $80 million and should funding commitments, including from the State Government be achieved by mid 2021, there is an opportunity to bring forward the detailed design and construction phases which could see the RAF operational in early 2024.

Project structure, business case, core project team and indicative plans are well advanced and the project could be fast tracked, subject to funding commitments.

With the expected creation of 364 full time employment positions during construction and predicted economic impact of $160 million, it is envisaged that the RAF could play a major role in WA's COVID Recovery Plan.

There will be around 207 full time equivalent positions once operational, with an ongoing benefit to the WA economy.

One of the unique features of the RAF is the proactive approach to health embedded into the design and operations. Curtin University, supported by the City, will develop and implement an integrated model of community-based health care focused on the prevention and management of chronic disease, bone and joint health, exercise and nutrition and dementia. The model will be built on high quality evidence with ongoing data analysis and evaluation. Savings to the health care system will be tracked providing a mechanism for measuring return on investment.

The RAF will play a crucial role in sport development through the provision of a Community House, managed by SportWest, providing shared accommodation for state sporting associations, peak swimming and aquatic bodies, key sport education bodies and other community groups that are traditionally under-resourced (for example COTA WA, SEDA).

Additionally, the City is working with Wesley South Perth Hockey Club (WASP) and supporting the proposed relocation of the club from Richardson Reserve, South Perth to Collier Reserve, Como. The intention is that WASP would co-locate with the RAF. The Club has been actively working towards creating a new facility that incorporates a synthetic hockey surface and has completed an initial feasibility. The proposed new location is near the Perth Hockey Stadium at Curtin University and this will have the benefit of providing additional fields and supporting the retention of Hockey Australia as the only National Sporting Organisation based in WA.

COVID-19 highlighted the importance of community and the provision of facilities to promote physical and mental wellbeing for the local community and vulnerable people. The RAF is designed to be an all age, all ability facility with opportunities for sport, leisure and recreation. It will provide support for families and opportunities for children and young people with complex health, social and emotional needs.

The RAF will be innovatively designed in a COVID conscious way as an integrated community centre for good public health and wellbeing.

The RAF is a once in a generation opportunity to provide an integrated model of sport, leisure, health and education.

A report will be presented at the Council Meeting to be held on 23 February, where Council will determine whether to proceed with implementing the Business Plan.

Geoff Glass
City of South Perth Chief Executive Officer

For more information about the Recreation and Aquatic Facility, visit the RAF project page on the City's website.

Contact us

For more information, please contact the City.