Accessible Housing for Aged and Dependent People – Your Questions Answered

Southcare’s Vision is to be the provider of choice for aged care services in our area and best in class in our sector. As an award winning organisation we are committed to Empowering People and Enriching Lives. We achieve this through working in line with our values of Quality, Respect, Integrity, Cooperation and Empathy

Our purpose is to support sessions to stay comfortable in their own homes and communities and we recognise that as people age, home and community are central to wellbeing. Southcare continues to work towards our strategic goal of providing accommodation, care and support to aged and dependent people. We are developing our sites on both sides of Bickley Crescent (between Pether and Manning Roads) to create a community precinct and apartment lifestyle for local people. In this highly-anticipated development, we aim to support residents to live well through being connected to high quality care available in their own stylish home. We plan to have an exceptionally picturesque cul de sac, café and community centre that supports people to keep living well and safely in their own home whilst remaining linked to the community.  We understand people want to:

  • Stay in their own community
  • Live independently, not in an institution
  • Own their own home and leave an inheritance
  • Live close to facilities (shops, public transport)
  • Age in place and not have to move again for health reasons
  • Be safe, part of life in the area, financially prudent and free from major expenses
  • Lock-up and leave
  • Have access to care and support services when they need it.

As a community based not-for-profit, we are here to address the emerging needs within the community and in turn provide a range of products and services and resources designed to help people.

The community benefits of this development include:

  • Addressing a shortage of appropriate diverse housing for aged and dependent people. This development will provide accessible places for people and will meet universal design principles and best practice in building accessible places. Universal design supports an approach to building and house design that caters to the needs of people with all abilities in the community.
  • Housing is a key issue in the creation of safer more connected communities. This development recognises housing and its importance to the welfare and wellbeing of aged and dependent people.
  • Streetscape, café and community centre will facilitate community development, engagement, capacity building, social inclusion and psychological wellbeing.
  • Local community members will have access to local services.
  • Ensures aged and dependent people maintain their asset (their home), minimise change and provides a lower cost of living.
  • As an aged care specialist, Southcare will be able to support people as they age in their own home. Key benefits include safety, maintaining independence, reduced risk of illness, familiarity and comfort, proximity to their loved ones, public transport and local amenities.

Q & A

How Did the Development Come About?

In 2011 Southcare worked with Curtin University and two consultants to undertake research into the needs within the local community. It was determined that the site in conjunction with Southcare’s future strategy offers a considerable opportunity to provide a significantly increased amount of much needed accommodation and care to a greater amount of local residents.

Background information that informed the research outcomes is as follows:

The Population of the City of South Perth

The Australian Bureau of Statistics Census data 2011 revealed the following selected information:

The population of the City of South Perth local government area (LGA) exhibits a higher concentration of people over 55 years of age than compared to the Perth Metropolitan area, with an increasingly larger gap in concentrations of those over 65 and 75 y ears of age; and the concentration of people over 55 years of age living within the City of South Perth LGA has increased from 22.3% of the total population in 2001 to 25.5% in 2011 (compared with Perth; 20.4%  in 2001 to 23.6 % in 2011).

Who Needs Assistance?

The number of females over 50 years of age with a need for assistance living within the City of South Perth LGA increased from 377 in 2006 to just under 800 in 2011 (an increase of 110 per cent). In the same period, the number of males over 50 years of age with a need for assistance decreased from 797 in 2006 to 397 in 2011. However, the total change reflects a 43 percent increase in the need for assistance in those over 50 years of age; and the areas within the South Perth region which contain the highest numbers of people with a need for assistance in 2011 were Manning, Waterford, St James and Wilson.

Housing Tenure

The population of the City of South Perth (LGA) exhibits a higher concentration of people who rent accommodation from a State Housing Authority or church and community groups than metropolitan Perth; and the concentration of people living in the City of South Perth (LGA) who rent accommodation from a church, housing cooperative or community group increased from 0.35% in 2001 to 0.59% in 2011. During the same period, State Housing Authority rentals in South Perth decreased.


How does the Southcare development align with the Western Australian Planning Commission’s Directions 2031 and Beyond?

Directions 2031 and Beyond is a spatial planning framework; a high level strategic plan that establishes a vision for future growth of the Perth and Peel region, and provides a framework to guide the detailed planning and delivery of housing, infrastructure and services necessary to accommodate that growth. Directions 2031 advocates for a ‘connected city’ model, which amongst other features is characterised by:

  • Promoting a better balance between greenfield and infill development;
  • Planning for an adequate supply of housing band land in response to population growth and changing community needs; and
  • Facilitating increased housing diversity, adaptability, affordability and choice.

Directions 2031 identifies that a target of 47% of new residential development should be infill development.

Southcare Site

The proposed development site was identified in Directions 2031 and Beyond Report as being within the ‘Central’ sub-region where infill residential development and re-development should be promoted. With respect to Residential Aged Care, under Section 7.4.4, the Strategy identifies:

While the ageing population is likely to increase demand for aged care services over the next 20 years, supply from the private sector is declining due to rising costs associated with construction, difficulties in securing suitable parcels of land and funding constraints.

Providing aged care accommodation is therefore considered highly consistent with the intent of Directions 2031, to accommodate an aging population and provide density within the existing urban area.

Development Application Update

Development Application Progress

  1. Development Application submitted to the City of South Perth July 2017
  2. City of South Perth planning officers assessed application and recommended approval in the City’s Responsible Authority Report to the Metro Central Joint Development Assessment Panel (JDAP), October 2017.
  3. Special Council meeting held 25th October 2017 .This provides the opportunity for people to make deputations either for or against the development. Five people spoke against the development
  4. Southcare’s application was considered by the JDAP on the 31st October 2017. The application was refused on the following grounds:
    • Notwithstanding the zoning of the land and the absence of some, if not all, controls on development of this land now contained in Town Planning Scheme No. 6, the proposed development represents an overdevelopment of the site.
    • The amenity impact on surrounding single residential development, including the proposed level of landscaping, traffic generation, anticipated parking in Pether Road, and the visual bulk and scale of the development are not acceptable in the form presently proposed.
  1. Southcare applied to the State Administrative Tribunal (SAT) for a review of the JDAP’s decision in accordance with Part 14 of the Planning and Development Act 2005.
  2. On the 19th December 2017, the parties to the SAT proceedings attended a mediation – at that mediation, a further mediation was set for the 16th February 2018.
  3. On the 16th February 2018 the parties to the SAT Proceedings attended a further mediation.
  4. Southcare’s application will be re-considered by the JDAP on or before the 6th April 2018.
  5. Southcare’s development application was re-considered by the JDAP on the 4th April and final orders were issued on the 27th April 2018 approving our application.
Will Southcare leave their Bickley Crescent Site?

Southcare opened its doors to the City of South Perth on the 6th April 1982, we have been on the Bickley Cres site for 35 years and have no plans to leave the site. Bickley Crescent is Southcare’s spiritual home.  It is the place where Southcare feels we belong, it is the place where we connect with those in need.

The Southcare  head office is at 53 Bickley Crescent Manning. The Building is called ‘Janet Elder House’, named after the long term volunteer Janet Elder who contributed many hours of service to Southcare. Upon her death she left a bequest and the funds were used to build the head office.

Will Southcare provide care services to people who live in the apartments?

Yes, Southcare’s core business is to provide caring services for those who are disadvantaged by age, sickness, disability (while encouraging independence and maintaining function and skills), unemployment, and poverty, familial or social stresses. Popular home care services include personal care, domestic assistance, garden maintenance, respite, transport, nursing services, social activities, dementia and nursing care.

Technology, freshly cooked daily meals, weekly cleaning and linen services will also be on offer to create the perfect balance between support and independent living.

What will happen to the Community Centre and all the community groups Southcare supports through providing pro bono accommodation?

Part of the development includes a Community Centre and Café. Southcare will continue to make this available to community groups and we will also be seeking involvement on how we can make our services available to all members of the local community.

Is the development for Public/State housing for people over 55?

No this development is not part of the Department of Housing (WA) affordable housing strategy.

Can anyone live in the apartments?

No – The site is developed only for the purposes of Aged or Dependent Persons’ Dwellings, Aged or Dependent Persons’ Amenities, Aged or Dependent Persons Care, community welfare activities or other related services.

For further information see Planning and Development Act 2055 Approved Town Planning Scheme Amendment City of South Perth Town Planning Scheme No 6 – Amendment no 45 at page 4979.  

What does "Ageing in Place" mean?

Ageing in place is a term used to describe a person living in the residence of their choice, for as long as they are able, as they age. This includes being able to have any services (or other support) they might need over time as their needs change.

Older people want choices about where and how they age in place. Ageing in place has advantages in terms of a sense of attachment or connection and feelings of security and familiarity in relation to both home and community. Ageing in place relates to a sense of identity both through independence and autonomy and through caring relationships and roles in the places people live.

What are Southcare’s Hours of Operation?

Southcare’s operating hours are from 7am to 4pm Monday to Friday. However coordinators are on-call and support workers work seven days a week so we can provide care and support services to people.

How many units are we proposing to develop?

The development application is for 82 residential apartments units over four levels. The proposal is for 33 units with the western building and 49 units with the eastern building. This will be made up of 1×1 bedroom, 2×1 bedroom, 2×2 bedroom and 3×2 bedroom apartments. Each apartment has been designed to enable people to age in place and meet livable housing design standards.   A livable home is designed to: be easy to enter; be easy to navigate in and around; be capable of easy and cost-effective adaptation, and be responsive to the changing needs of home occupants.

We aim to meet the Gold and Platinum levels of performance for Livable Housing Design. Each apartment will have:

  • A safe continuous and step free path of travel from the street entrance and / or parking area to a dwelling entrance that is level.
  • Internal doors and corridors that facilitate comfortable and unimpeded movement between spaces.
  • A toilet on the ground (or entry) level that provides easy access.
  • A bathroom that contains a hobless (step-free) shower recess.
  • Reinforced walls around the toilet, shower and bath to support the safe installation of grabrails at a later date
  • A continuous handrail on one side of any stairway where there is a rise of more than one metre.

Gold Level – Enhanced requirements for most of the core livable housing design elements plus additional elements. The gold level provides for more generous dimensions for most of the core livable housing design elements and introduces additional elements in areas such as the kitchen and bedroom.

Platinum Level – Some further enhanced requirements for the core livable housing design elements plus all remaining elements. All 16 elements are featured in the platinum level. This level describes design elements that would better accommodate ageing in place and people with higher mobility needs. This level requires more generous dimensions for most of the core livable design elements and introduces additional elements for features such as the living room and flooring.

What about the increase in Traffic and Public Access?

The Western Australian Planning Commission (WAPC) Transport Impact Assessment Guidelines for Developments (2016) provides the following guidance on the assessment of traffic impacts:

“As a general guide, an increase in traffic of less than 10 percent of capacity would not normally be likely to have a material impact on any particular section of road, but increases over 10 percent may. All sections of road with an increase greater than 10 percent of capacity should therefore be included in the analysis. For ease of assessment, an increase of 100 vehicles per hour for any lane can be considered as equating to around 10 percent of capacity. Therefore, any section of road where development traffic would increase flows by more than 100 vehicles per hour for any lane should be included in the analysis.”

As part of the Development Application Southcare commissioned Transcore to undertake a traffic assessment for the proposed redevelopment of the Southcare Manning site at 49-53 Bickley Crescent, Manning. The conclusions of the report are as follows:

  • The site features good connectivity with the existing road and pedestrian network. There is good public transport coverage through nearby bus services.
  • The traffic analysis undertaken in the report shows that the traffic generation of the proposed development is minimal (less than 100vph on any lane) and as such would have insignificant impact on the surrounding road network. Therefore the impact on the surrounding road network is considered to be minimal.

The report concluded that the findings of the Traffic and Access Statement are supportive of the proposed redevelopment and no safety issues were identified within the scope of their assessment.

What about Parking?

A Parking Needs Study was prepared by Transcore on behalf of Southcare Inc. The subject of this report is the proposed redevelopment of the Southcare Manning site at 49-53 Bickley Crescent, Manning.

The proposed redevelopment entails demolition of the three existing residential dwellings on the western portion of the site, and all of the existing Southcare buildings, facilities and amenities on the eastern portion of the site.

The Southcare head office building will be retained as part of the proposal.

It is proposed to construct two residential apartment buildings providing a total of 82 residential units with a community centre and small café. 84 on-site car parking bays will be provided, with 83 bays allocated to residents and 1 bay to the café. 23 public on-street bays will be provided on Bickley Crescent in the post development plan. The parking supply in Southcare head office will increase from 17 bays to 19 bays.

The total proposed parking supply in the study area is in the order of 126 bays.

The temporal parking demand analysis undertaken in this report confirms that the proposed car parking allocation is satisfactory and accommodates the needs of the various component land uses within the study area. The combined peak parking demand is anticipated to be 94 bays at 11:00am.

The peak parking demand for non-residents (residential visitors, Southcare head office, community centre and café parking) is expected to be 39 bays at 11:00am.

The proposed parking allocation within Southcare head office, within the eastern car park for the café and on-street on Bickley Crescent is 43 bays.

Therefore, the proposed parking allocation for non-residential uses and visitors is considered satisfactory to meet the needs of the study area, without reliance on utilising any car parking proposed to be allocated to residents.

The demand for residential parking is anticipated to be 55 bays. However, if the full allocation of 1 bay per unit is required, then the proposed parking will still be satisfactory.

Transcore concluded, this parking needs study was undertaken through a collaborative process with parking survey results and parking analysis informing development of the site plan and the proposed parking allocation. Therefore, the proposed parking supply and allocation satisfactorily meet the needs of the study area.

What about Pedestrian Access?

Pedestrian access to the proposed development is via the existing external footpaths running along Pether Road, Manning Road and Bickley Crescent.

The paved area at the southern end of Pether Road is proposed to function as a shared space, which will accommodate vehicle access to the Southcare head office building, pedestrian movements between the two buildings, and to function as a vehicle turn-around area for cars at the end of the cul-de-sac.

Will I still be able to ride my bike through Bickley Crescent?

The Perth Bicycle Network Map (see below) shows the existing cyclist connectivity to the subject site. Pether Road is rated as a good road riding environment. Bickley Crescent forms part of the Perth Bicycle Network route SE30. The Freeway PSP is accessible within short cycling distance to the west.

What about Public Transport Access?

The subject site has access to bus services 100 and 101 along Canavan Crescent approximately 300m east of the subject site. These bus routes provide access the rail line at Canning Bridge Train Station.

Nearby public transport services are shown in below.

What landscaping will be used to protect resident’s privacy?

Tree Selection Rationale

The following selection principals and design objectives were defined for tree selections at Southcare to create the highest level of amenity for both residents and neighbouring properties whilst balancing maintenance and long term success of each tree:

  • Consistent with City’s Street Tree Master Plan
  • Compact. screening features for privacy
  • Seasonal variation and floral interest
  • In keeping with the South Perth sense of place
  • Drought tolerant and low maintenance
  • Attractive bird habitat opportunities
  • Non-invasive root systems

Capital Ornamental Pear 

Pyrus calferyana ‘Capital’ grows to 1Om tall in a narrow, deciduous growth habit. The slender, columnar shape lends itself well to tight beds and boundary screening in both summer {in leaf) and winter {dormant) due to dense upright branch structures that bear flourishes of white flowers in Spring. In autumn, leaves turn a purplish-red colour and fall in a short time period minimising sweeping maintenance throughout the year. The maintenance will be undertaken by Southcare. The understorey will complement this tree selection with white-flowering Crinum peduncufatum to the back bordered by soft verdant Lomandra fongifofia sedges that will not interupt passing traffic.

Garden beds will be set down slightly to capture driveway runoff and supplement irrigation to rapidly establish a solid vegetative screen. Seasonal colour and flowering highlights will be set off by a backdrop of climbing Ficus pumila that will cling to the face of the fence without the need for training wires.

Canopy Overhang 

With any tree selection inside private lots there is always some expectation that tree canopies could overhang property boundaries as the specimen matures. In accordance with local and state planning laws, residents on neighbouring properties are entitled to prune any overhanging vegetation. The diagram below provides a graphic representation of how the canopy of the proposed Jacaranda’s might overhang in the short, medium and long term life of the tree. Located central to the boundary and at the convergence of neighbouring rear boundaries canopy spread is unlikely to affect neighbouring properties and will add amenity to outlooks.

Jacaranda Mimosifolia