LONG-TIME Cockburn Dockers HQ sceptic Kevin Allen says the project’s financials are starting to stack up for him, with ongoing costs looking like they’ll be manageable once the place is up and running.
While there are still steep startup costs for the $113 million project, the Cockburn councillor says his main concern is lumbering ratepayers with $2 million every year to keep the place running.
That’s a long way north of the $450,000 the council pays for the current recreation centre and surrounds.
But with better customer modeling showing the new project’s rec centre, aqua park and slides should draw in cash-flush folk from a wider catchment area, the annual costs are looking closer to what the council forks out now.
“Personally I still think it’s probably a little bit grandiose,” he says but adds “I think it’s fantastic for the Dockers, they’re getting a fantastic deal out of it.
“The issue is it’s still a lot of money going into one project, and I hope that doesn’t have ongoing effects in that it doesn’t stop other projects from going ahead.”
Groundworks are well underway at the site, west of Midgegooroo Avenue, and workers down there aren’t fussed about the financials.
They have bigger issues on their minds: “What are they gonna call the Fremantle Dockers when they move to Cockburn?” one chuckled.
Last we heard the breakdown of the upfront costs sees the Barnett government rucking in $12m, the feds handballing $10m, the Dockers kicking $13m to centre-half forward and Curtin uni punting a short million to Cockburn city council, which has to torp $70 million through the posts.
by DAVID BELL