A proposal for the redevelopment of Subiaco’s abandoned Pavilion Markets, which includes a 24-storey tower, has been given the tick of approval by the local council.
Designed by Hames Sharley, the project will comprise three residential buildings: the “Roberts” and “Rokeby” buildings, both six storeys, and a 24-storey “Seddon” building, which will become the tallest building in Subiaco.
It will occupy the site of the former Pavilion Markets, a Subiaco institution that closed in 2007.
The proposal includes new food, beverage and retail offerings focused around a market laneway.
“The redevelopment will become a sustainable, community oriented, mixed-use urban village and will form the gateway to Subiaco, linking the historic heart with its contemporary north,” reads a vision statement from Hames Sharley.
“The project enables the revival of the iconic Subiaco markets, as a regional and tourist destination albeit in a different format, to suit the changing demographics, community expectations and time in history.”
The City of Subiaco voted to approve the proposal at a meeting on 12 February, noting the importance of the site to the revitalization of the town centre.
This approval is not binding, however, with the final decision up to the Metro West Joint Development Assessment Panel, which is due to hand down its verdict on the project on 22 February.
A public consultation period for the project from 16 November to 14 December attracted some 530 submissions, including 457 in support and 57 objecting. Two opposing petitions were also submitted – one objecting (383 signatories) and one in support (417 signatories).
Council noted the high number of submissions was likely attributable to the site’s historic use, its prominence as a gateway to Subiaco and media attention.
A number of the submissions expressed concern about the height and bulk of the buildings while others raised issues around heritage, including advice from the State Heritage Office, which noted “consideration should be given to amending the design of the Rokeby Building to ensure it is in keeping with the tradition of corner lot buildings.”
The proponent submitted amended plans on 11 January, which saw Rokeby Building decreased from seven storeys to six. The heritage office responded, “I note that the revised proposal has removed a floor from the Rokeby Building, thus lowering the height, but the façade still extends to the lot line, which does not satisfy the committee’s concerns.”
Both the Design Review Panel and the council’s own heritage consultant, however, were satisfied with the amended plans. The Metro West Joint Development Assessment Panel is not statutorily bound to make a decision consistent with the State Heritage Office’s advice.
The Design Review Panel said it was “very supportive” of the proposal praising the “high-quality ground plane [which is] well connected to its context, with generous public space, thoroughly considered circulation and significant community benefit.”
WA planning minister Rita Saffioti expressed support for the council’s decision on 13 February, noting that it “aligns with the overall plan for Subi East.”
The 35.6-hectare Subi East precinct, for which the state government published a vision concept on 4 February, includes the area around the disused Subiaco Oval, which will be transformed into a housing development, and takes in the former Princess Margaret Hospital, the under-construction Inner City College and West Leederville train station.
The Pavilion Markets project sits to the west of the oval, near the Subiaco train station.