Green light for fitness and wellbeing hub

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The City of Joondalup will develop a health and wellbeing hub at Whitfords Nodes Park, Hillarys after public consultation results showed strong community support for the project. Joondalup Council received the results of the public consultation process at its February meeting.

The health and wellbeing hub will incorporate construction of a stairway on the northern dune where users can undertake a vigorous exercise regime, running or walking up and down the incline.

Subject to grant funding, it could also incorporate upgrades to the existing lookout, new drinking fountains and bottle refill stations, new picnic shelters and park furniture and upgrades to the existing path network. The current play equipment will also be consolidated into a new regional play space.

More than 70 per cent of respondents to the community consultation process indicated they strongly supported or supported each element of the concept plan, while 87 per cent indicated they strongly supported or supported the overall proposal.

Of the 458 responses obtained during the public consultation period, 426 were residents of the City of Joondalup.

Joondalup Mayor Albert Jacob said at 21m in height – equivalent to seven storeys – the stairway had the potential to become a popular tourist attraction.

“As a City committed to fostering active and healthy lifestyle opportunities, it’s pleasing to see such strong support for this project from our community,” Mayor Jacob said.

Mayor Jacob said the health and wellbeing hub would not only enhance the amenity and usability of the park to meet the diverse needs of City of Joondalup residents, it could also potentially draw substantial visitor traffic from outside the northern corridor.

“Attracting tourists to our City is a priority for Joondalup and is a very important contributor to our local economy,” he said.

“When finished, the health and wellbeing hub at Whitfords Nodes will only enhance Joondalup’s reputation as a Destination City that provides innovative and unique recreational activities that engage locals and visitors alike whilst enhancing community spirit.”

Mayor Jacob said any minor disturbance to the dune arising from the stairway construction would be addressed to prevent erosion and restore the native vegetation cover.

“The formalisation of recreational areas at the location will actually assist in protecting the dunes and its vegetation from disturbance from park users,” he said.

The City will apply for grant funding of $810,000 to go towards the project. Work could commence in 2018-19 with an expected completion date in the 2019-20 financial year.