Landcorp has written to the Metropolitan Redevelopment Authority (MRA) with a proposal for Subiaco Oval:
Demolition of the entire Subiaco Oval grandstands, light towers, carparking, Eagles’ gymnasium and club rooms, Subiaco Football Club and Kings Squash Courts infrastructure.
Removal of the heritage listed grassed playing surface, and/irrigation/subsurface drainage.
Re-establish a new playing surface and new irrigation/sub surface drainage post demolition.
The Sandover Medal walk where contained within the subject site will be removed and the tiles stored. Reinstatement will be made in consultation with the Western Australian Football Commission.
The part of the Sandover Medal Walk which is located within the Roberts Road reserve (outside of the Development Application area) will be protected. The removal and / or protection of the Sandover Medal Walk tiles is required during the demolition of the Stadium to ensure the tiles are not damaged.
The Subiaco Oval Gates will be retained and continue to act as a local landmark. They will be fully conserved and integrated into the new development. A conservation management plan is being prepared to fully document the gates, their history, condition and essential conservation works. Conservation policy will also help inform their integration into new developments and contexts.
The former long-running use of the space will be commemorated and celebrated through interpretation, not only as a sporting facility but also through its use as a music venue, hosting many international acts that reached out to another audience outside sport.
Reasons for demolition:
Turn the Subiaco Oval site and surrounding lands into a mixed use transit orientated development (TOD) for thousands of people to relax, work and live.
Sections of the grandstand development eg. the offices and function spaces could be retained and continue to operate in a similar function but due to the distinctive curved design of the facilities and the integral stadium seating, it will be difficult to retain and incorporate into a new development.
Subiaco Oval was placed on the state heritage register in March 2018. The heritage listing means:
Heritage “applies to the actual playing field so it can’t be ripped up or built over”.
MRA rules say that permission to demolish may be deferred until after it has received and approved a Development Application (DA) for replacement or new development for the site. Note: The State Government has not provided a DA for this site before demolition!
The MRA is inviting submissions. Questions and comments to the MRA could include:
Examples of other stadium sites which have retained some of their distinctive curved grandstands and repurposed them.
There is no DA for this site which demonstrates how football, heritage front gates, Sandover Medal Walk and tiles, music, international acts and cultural heritage will be incorporated into the redevelopment.
Where will the grassed playing surface be located and what shape will it be?
Where is the justification to remove lighting for sporting activities at night?
The heritage front gates without a grand stand will look like tokenism and a pathetic example of WA heritage, a bit like the unused Barracks Arch at the west end of St George’s Terrace.
Why is the State Government permitted to demolish a heritage site without a plausible Development Application to show what will replace the cultural heritage of this site?
A report prepared by Cardno infrastructure specialists on Subiaco Future Sport Space Requirements dated 7 November 2016, recommends the City of Subiaco’s public Sport Space be increased from 7.81ha to 14.76ha by 2036 to cater for a growing population to 22,710 persons. This means that possibly all of Lot 12732 (8.07ha) is required for the high density living infill proposed by the State Government in Directions 2031 and Beyond for the City.