Bunbury’s Homemaker Centre owner hopes plans for a small supermarket and residential apartments will help stamp out vandalism in the area, while also providing better services for workers.
Bunbury City Council this week supported changes in zoning to allow for a supermarket with apartments on top at the north-east corner of the homemaker precinct.
Property developer and owner Geoff Prosser told the South Western Times it was hoped the development would provide the same benefits as Eaton Fair.
“The advantage of the apartments is that we’ve found at Eaton Fair that our graffiti and vandalism when people are living on site reduces significantly,” Mr Prosser said.
“At Eaton Fair it’s zero, at the Homemaker Centre we have problems at times and this will just introduce a different sort of mix.”
He said the centre had been hit with graffiti with some paint “as thick as cardboard”.
Residential living at the Homemaker Centre has been in Mr Prosser’s sights for several years, but he has previously hit hurdles through council zoning.
The plans still need approval from the WA Planning Commission, but Mr Prosser said any residential development was likely to include about eight apartments.
Mayor Gary Brennan said the development and subsequent changes to the zoning were a reflection of the changing market demand and forces.
“The ultimate decision rests with the WA Planning Commission, but the city obviously strongly support it,” Mr Brennan said.
“The proposal put to us by the owner of the Homemaker Centre is there’s a lot of people who are employed at the Homemaker Centre and it’s more of a convenience for them to be able to purchase everyday consumables.
“The other element is to have some residential development as well, so we encourage residential development reasonably close to the city centre and within the city centre.”
Mr Prosser said a “small IGA store or smaller supermarket” and possible coffee shop and barber would service not only the Homemaker Centre’s workers, but also East Bunbury residents.