Social Impact Print E-mail
Submitted on 09/02/2010
We are told that the planned large amount of industry will be required to cater for the employment needs of Wanneroo's rapidly expanding population, which according to the Wanneroo Council's website will reach 302,000 people by 2030. However when you add the land area that currently exists and is proposed for industry in Wanneroo it would seem that there is a disproportionate amount of industrial land in contrast to what is needed for Wanneroo's projected population growth.

To illustrate this point we compare the amount of industrial land (Osborne Park plus Balcatta) within City of Stirling with its population, to the projected population of Wanneroo and the amount of industrial land which currently exists. Also comparing it to that which is proposed in the ILS document.

Utilising such a huge amount of land for industrial purposes would make East Wanneroo one of the biggest and busiest industrial hubs in Perth. If the South Pinjar Industrial site gets the go ahead, then the combined amount of industrial land in Neerabup and South Pinjar alone would be approximately the same area of land as the industrial estates of Kewdale, Welshpool and Canning Vale put together. That is enormous! If you then add to the mix the industrial estate of Wangara and that which is being planned in Yanchep/Two Rocks, you have a lot of industry.

The animation below illustrates how large the Neerabup and proposed South Pinjar industrial estates are, the same size as Canningvale and Kewdale combined without taking Wangara into consideration. Press the play button to view animation.

Welshpool and Kewdale lie in close proximity to Perth Airport and Canning Vale close to Jandakot Airport. Neerabup and South Pinjar lie in the middle of nowhere. There is no sea port close by as in Kwinana, no airport or rail system, the roads needed for the 24 hour industrial traffic and workers who live outside the eastern half of Wanneroo would create a horrendous imposition on residents.

We believe adding the South Pinjar industrial site to the amount of industrial land currently zoned will create a disproportionate amount of industrial development in the City of Wanneroo in relation to its projected population base in 2031. As we said, the traffic flow (trucks and workers) through East Wanneroo and adjoining suburbs would be horrendous, especially given that the South Pinjar industrial site is designated for 24hr operation.

In the “Index of Disadvantage” on many cities, towns and shire websites, they state that:
“The Index of Relative Socio-Economic Disadvantage has …been constructed so that relatively disadvantaged areas (e.g. areas with many low income earners) have low index values”. “The Index of Relative Socio-Economic Disadvantage has …been constructed so that relatively disadvantaged areas (e.g. areas with many low income earners) have low index values”. The cities/towns/shires with a strong industry base generally rank as the most disadvantaged in this index, with the likes of Cottesloe and Peppermint Grove the least. Out of the 30 council areas of Perth, Wanneroo is currently the 12th most disadvantaged out of 30. It normally follows that the more disadvantaged a city/town/shire is in this regard, the less quality government services, the higher the crime rate and the lower house values are.

This amount of industrial development would turn the suburbs of Ashby, Ashton Heights, Banksia Grove, Delamare Park, Carramar, Jandabup, Tapping, Mariginiup, Wanneroo and Hocking into industrial suburbs and disadvantage these areas socially and economically.

Click on the following link to view these statistics:

Some may question the conclusion we come to in relation to the amount of industry in a given area, and its negative impact on the city, town or shire's standing in the Index of Disadvantage, citing the amount of state housing in an area as a major factor in these statistics. This is because state housing is more often than not built adjacent or near to industrial estates and not in suburbs where people have more disposable income and choose to live in an area as a lifestyle choice. (Note:we believe every city, town and shire should have the national average percentage of public housing).

The suburb of Canning Vale (The industrial site at Canning Vale is about a half the size of the proposed South Pinjar site) was once pointed out to CREW as a place where its citizens lived next to an average sized industrial estate and where its residents were on the better end of the socio-economic table, that is 50% and higher. Canning Vale is the exception and not the rule.

It is a different story for Queens Park, a suburb on the border of the Welshpool industrial area (also in the City of Canning). Its residents are on the bottom 25% of the socio-economic index. This is despite it having around the national average for State housing (Queens Park has 3.65%, the national average is 3.51% of dwellings) and having the same unemployment rate as the national average, which is 5.2%.

Given that the percentage of unemployed people and the proportion of public housing are around the national average you would think that the socio-economic index for Queens Park should be around the middle and not in the bottom 25%. Queens Park is our definition of an industrial ghetto suburb. This is not a situation that the residents of Wanneroo want to find themselves in one day.

It doesn't take much common sense to realise that people prefer to live in environments where there is not a disproportionate amount of industry breathing down their necks. They prefer environments that complement their quality of life rather than those that negate it through posing a risk to their health and which negatively impact on the appreciation of house values.

As we said, Canning Vale is the exception and not the rule, and we say it is for the following reasons:

  • Only 0.23% of its housing is State housing (the national average is 3.5%).
  • It has a reasonable number of rural lifestyle blocks and backs onto rural land, in other words, accommodates those with a disposable income who want a rural lifestyle.
  • Lies in close proximity to the city, around 11km from Perth Central with easy access to the freeway.

So although Canning Vale has an industrial estate, it does not have industry to the north and south of it as Queens Park does, which borders the industrial estate of Welshpool and also has Canning Vale to the south.

To put Canning Vale into context with Wanneroo, let us compare the Canning Vale industrial estate with the industrial estate of Wangara. Residents to the north of this industrial estate are, in general, in a similar position that those in Canning Vale are in relation to their socio-economic index and rural living.

However if the South Pinjar site was given the green light this would all change. Residents living east of Wanneroo Rd between the Wangara industrial estate and and the South Pinjar/Neerabup industrial sites would find themselves in a similar position to the residents living between the industrial estate of of Welspool/Kewdale and Canning Vale. In other words they would find themselves in a similar position as residents of, Queens Park, Bentley, East Cannington, Beckenham, Lynwood, Parkwood, Ferndale and Langford.

No, actually it would be worse than these areas because the industrial land area of Pinjar/Neerabup/Wangara would fit Welshpool/Kewdale and Canninvale multiplied by 2.

The area would also be landlocked, having no airport as Kewdale/Welshpool does. It would have to rely on major north-south roads (mainly new roads) for haulage imposing on residents a huge burden of noise and air pollution.

Instead of having a positive impact through offering employment for local residents, the proposed South Pinjar industrial site will in all likelihood have an overall negative social and economic impact affecting resident's home values and lifestyle.

This amount of industrial development would turn the suburbs of Ashby, Ashton Heights, Banksia Grove, Delamare Park, Carramar, Jandabup, Tapping, Mariginiup, Wanneroo and Hocking into industrial suburbs and disadvantage these areas socially and economically.

Click on the following link to view which suburbs in the City of Wanneroo are the least disadvantaged and which ones are the most.

How else can residents be disadvantaged through having general industry located in close proximity to them? Click on link to follow the path of the Binary industrial fire in Queensland in relation to home values and other problems. (Binary fire video 2)

According to the 2006 census the percentage of workers in Claremont, Cottesloe, Mosman Park, Nedlands, Peppermint Grove and Subiaco who work in the wholesale trade, manufacturing, transport, postal and warehouse industries equates to 4.1%. Belmont on the other hand has 46% of its workers in holding positions in these industries. (the highest in Perth). Belmont according to the “Index of Disadvantage” ranks as the second most disadvantaged city/town/shire in the whole of Perth, second only to Kwinana. Kwinana has 44.8% of its workforce in the wholesale trade, manufacturing, transport postal and warehouse sectors.

The difference between the likes of Claremont and Belmont is, those living in Claremont have more disposable income. Our question; will locating a large amount of industry in the City of Wanneroo equate to prosperity for the people of Wanneroo? Remember according to the “Index of Disadvantage” the bottom half of the index (the most disadvantaged) is predominantly made up of cities/towns/shires that have industry as a major employer. When you contrast this with the likes of Claremont, Cottesloe, Mosman Park, Nedlands, Peppermint Grove and Subiaco which, generally speaking, rank as the most advantaged, then the answer is probably no.

Of course Wanneroo is not Cottesloe or Claremont, however it does have natural land and water features that, if enhanced ,could provide the type of lifestyle and surroundings that would attract people who do have disposable incomes. A good number of those natural features lie in East Wanneroo with its bushland, large trees, lakes and wetlands. Instead of turning this ecologically sensitive area into suburbs whose purpose is to provide workers for industry, why not create up-market eco-villages, allowing people to live on one acre blocks with small building envelopes? If the houses were landscaped with native plants, using eco-sewerage (eliminating the need for deep sewerage and disturbing acid sulphate soils) if their water was recycled and if water condensation technology and rainwater tanks are used then such housing would enhance the health of this ecologically fragile environment rather than destroy it. These areas would also provide the ecological linkages between the wetlands, vegetation and the lakes.

Designed in the right way, eco villages could very well attract eco conscious residents with disposable income. This would help lift the economic profile of the area and East Wanneroo. With the nearness of Joondalup (Joondalup is the 6th least disadvantaged shire according to the “Index of Disadvantage”) and with some creative vision, a better balance in the socio-economic framework of East Wanneroo could be achieved. In which case the so-called need for such a large amount of industry for industrial employment purposes would be offset.

Joondalup, the sixth least disadvantaged city/town/shire, has made Lake Joondalup a feature that has attracted high quality housing and an interesting lifestyle choice for residents. Isn't this a good idea for Wanneroo to contemplate?

How can the Government justify siting industry within the Priority one public drinking water resource area of the Gnangara mound when the plans they propose strongly indicate that the property values and lifestyle of residents will be drastically undermined? Is that good planning? Whose interest will the proposed South Pinjar industrial estate really benefit?


Environmental Quote

"Let every individual and institution now think and act as a responsible trustee of Earth, seeking choices in ecology, economics and ethics that will provide a sustainable future, eliminate pollution, poverty and violence, awaken the wonder of life and foster peaceful progress in the human adventure."

— John McConnell, founder of International Earth Day

Social Quote

... the 20th century has been characterized by three developments of great political importance: The growth of democracy, the growth of corporate power, and the growth of corporate propaganda as a means of protecting corporate power against democracy.

Australian social scientist, quoted by Noam Chomsky in World Orders Old and New

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We need your support and input to make changes in our community. Our vision is to create a place where everyday people can be heard and have the power to make choices. We are not only the custodians of our homes, but also our communities.

The CREW team, Banksia Grove, Mariginiup, Carramar, Tapping and surrounding suburbs
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