DAVID ROSS is the executive chairman of URBNSURF Perth, which has secured a lease to build a Wave Park in Alfred Cove. It’s not been a smooth ride and last week one of the opponents got stuck into the lease, saying Melville council had signed up to a one-sided deal that favours the developer. In this week’s THINKING ALLOWED Mr Ross argues that’s not the case and it’s just a common, no-thrills agreement.
Last week, David Maynier provided his thoughts on the lease arrangements between our company, URBNSURF Perth, and the City of Melville for the surf park development at Tompkins Park.
David has a copy of our lease and he knows its content back to front (probably better than me).
So why did he use his article to pose wrong propositions about the lease to Herald readers?
It’s time to address David’s comments head-on and inform those residents and readers who want to understand the facts.
If you don’t know David, it’s important to understand he’s the convenor of the Alfred Cove Action Group (formed solely to prevent our development from occurring).
His article introduces him as a resident, but he’s also a founder of the new organisation, The Swan Foreshore Protection Association (formed so David and his friends could start a Supreme Court legal action to overturn our lease).
Finally, he is the nearest neighbour to the wave park and enjoys expansive and unobstructed river views across public land.
Our lease is the most common, vanilla, commercial ground lease you are likely to find – nothing to see here.
David implies the city has somehow given away its power under the lease to URBNSURF Perth and we have complete contractual flexibility.
This is nonsense. The lease is on the city’s website – it is simple to understand, and I invite everyone reading this to review it and make up your own mind – http://www.melvillecity.com.au/our-city/future-vision/wave-park-proposal-alfred-cove.
The URBNSURF Perth development needs the consent of 13 different state government entities and it must pass public consultation, and once that occurs, we can start construction.
If the development consent is not obtained, the lease ends, that’s it.
Why would we have a lease if we can’t undertake the development?
David says the city needs to “fork out $10m to prepare the site” for our project.
Utter nonsense – URBNSURF must prepare the site under the lease (take a look at clause 9). There is no cost to the city for our project and no financial risk at all (read clauses 12 and 13).
David says the initial lease payment could be years away. Well, if David and his supporters ceased their efforts to play the system and use every avenue available to delay our project, we could pay the rent sooner.
For someone who thinks the system is stacked against the individual, David and his friends are adept at working the rules to obstruct, delay and confuse a project that will deliver enormous recreational and economic benefits to the rest of the Melville community, to Perth, and to many people, particularly a younger generation of local residents.
David says “URBNSURF can walk away at any time”. Some advice David – we’re not going anywhere.
Along with the new community groups that will utilise this world-class facility, and the younger generation of residents that actually wants their community to progress, we are looking forward to becoming your near neighbour as soon as possible.