- A Community Reference Group, established as part of the SuperTown project planning process
- A long standing Project Control Group have governed the project; this group has including the Margaret River Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Margaret River Busselton Tourism Association
- A number of community workshops and surveys as part of the 12 month engagement process for the Shire's Community Strategic Plan 2036
- The 2016 Community Satisfaction Survey which included questions specific to the design
- Regular community meetings and workshops from Margaret River Council Chambers, including major events through the detailed design in 2016, 2017 and 2018
- A Your Say page with regular updates and opportunities to provide feedback, including an ongoing live Q&A forum.
- Engagement with Main Street Traders over August/September 2019 to refine the staged construction schedule.
Read a more detailed history of engagement below.
How long will the redevelopment take?
Read new plans announced on 1 April 2020 to fast track the project.
The project is expected to be completed by 18 December 2020.
What is the Festival Precinct?
What types of improvements are included?
Our Main Street Makeover will include resurfaced footpaths, additional pedestrian crossings, new outdoor seating and more trees. The new Festival Precinct will allow us to temporarily close off Fearn Avenue for outdoor events in the CBD. Cyclists will have a designated lane up the Main Street and new bike racks to park at. New LED street lighting and beautiful landscaping will add to the appeal of visiting Margaret River’s town centre. Newly designed provision for flags on street poles will make it easier for event organisers to promote thier events. Some of the less visible improvements are new stormwater drainage and upgrading electrical connections.
How many parking bays will there be on the Main Street?
There are currently 104 general car bays in the Main Street Makeover project section on Bussell Highway from top to bottom.
Once the streetscape is in place there will be a total of 68.
The changes are to make room for expanding tree roots to prolong the life of existing Plane trees, 14 additional street trees, 3 additional pedestrian crossings, two new roundabouts at Wallcliffe Road and Churchill Avenue, as well as to accommodate street scaping, pedestrian safety and public amenity improvements. All general car parking bays will be 7 metres, rather than the current length of 6.3 metres, to allow for easier parking and achieve compliance with current standards. ACROD accessible bays will also be enlarged. The Shire is installing an additional 38 bays in the CBD to offset the loss on the Main Street. So overall, there will actually be an increase in the number of parking bays.
What input has the community had to date?
The Shire conducted an extensive consultation process for the design of the main street redevelopment, which spanned over the last 7 years.
Key milestones of the engagement included:
Will the main street be more pedestrian friendly?
9 new pedestrian crossings will help make it easier for people to cross the road. A dual use path down the Main Street as well as two new roundabouts will help reduce traffic congestion and support a more friendly experience in our town centre. The Festival Precinct along Fearn Avenue can be shut off from vehicles during events.
What cycling infrastructure will there be?
A cycle path will run up the Main Street, connecting cyclists to the town centre. New bicycle racks will provide spaces to park close to the shops.
RV friendly parking
Indented parking for long vehicles is available on the south side of Wallcliffe Road, west of Station Road, in front of the electric vehicle charging station. The Shire is investigating additional locations for formal caravan/camper an parking bays in Margaret River.
How many of the trees on Margaret River’s main street will be removed or replaced during the redevelopment?
Fearn Avenue will be one-way, what traffic analysis has been done?
The Shire engaged GHD Pty Ltd Traffic Engineering Consultants to undertake a comprehensive analysis of the Main Street Project. In May 2017 GHD analysed a one way traffic solution for Fearn Avenue from Bussell Highway for the forecast years 2018, 2022 and 2035. The current design allows for a left-in, right-in one-way access from Bussell Highway into Fearn Avenue, which formed part of the analysis.
In terms of anticipated exit routes for buses and other big vehicles from Fearn Avenue - buses and large trucks will continue their travel southbound on Fearn Avenue towards Wallcliffe Road. Large vehicles can also travel northbound to continue on Charles West Avenue and can then enter onto Bussell Highway northbound via Tunbridge Street.
How much will it cost?
The Council Report from 24 June 2019 details the total cost for the project is $11,371,225.
Councillors agreed at their meeting on 11 September 2019 to re-tender the project based on the previous negotiations not concluding in a contract within the designated time frame of 6 months as stipulated in the Local Government Act 1995. Through this new tender process the construction cost may be adjusted depending on responses received.
In terms of income for this project, the Shire has received $5.49 million plus interest from Royalties for Regions, with $200,000 spent so far. The Shire has $2 million plus interest from land asset sales which has been held in a reserve, plus $757,000 from other Shire reserves and $400,000 of Council funds.
Who will doing the works?
agreed at their meeting on 11 December 2019 to award the tender to local construction company Busselton Civil (BCP) Pty Ltd.
Are there jobs for local contractors?
Shire’s tender process supports submissions that advocate and propose the use
of local business in every form of service, being direct and indirect to the
Detailed history of community engagement
A history of community engagement for the Main Street Redevelopment includes:
· The Super Town Growth Plan identified the redevelopment of the Margaret River Main Street as a priority project in 2012.
· Community engagement for the Shire’s Community Strategic Plan in 2013 highlighted the main street as a major area for development. This was raised by the community through workshops and surveys which engaged over 600 people. The main message from the community was that the main street needed to be safer.
· Two community meetings and multiple mail outs to business owners and community members over 2013, as the initial stage of engagement to develop the concept design.
· A Project Control Group was then formed, comprised of several key community representatives who steered the project from 2013 to 2018, particularly focused on engineering and traffic safety technical reports and progressing design within budget.
· An online project page was hosted on the Shire’s website from 2013, and moved to the Shire’s Your Say platform in 2016, providing ongoing access to the most up to date documentation and allowing an open Q&A forum for community.
· A general Shire Community Satisfaction Survey was sent a random sample of the community in 2016 asking a specific question where results showed a roundabout approach was favoured for key intersections.
· Community engagement period on the detailed design was held over April and May 2017. This included an open door community workshop held on 20 April 2017 to deep dive into the three precinct areas and rationalise the detailed design. It was facilitated by Tunablue; with close to 36 attendees, 26 survey submissions via Your Say and an 8 additional formal submissions made by email and letter following the workshop.
· This engagement period also included a Shire staff workshop with 23 employees to provide detailed feedback on the main street detailed design
· A disability access review of the detailed design is completed in 2017, working with people living with disability through the Community Access and Inclusion Reference Group and disability access specialists.
· A public Council briefing was held in February 2018 to present the amended schematic design, which was then published on Your Say. This open door community session was well attended by the community.
· A comprehensive pubic art engagement project is completed over June 2018 in collaboration with the Art and Culture Advisory Group and a Your Say survey attracting over 300 pieces of feedback.
· A joint Project Information Session and Main Street Traders Forum was hosted on 4 October 2018 with MRCCI providing a project update, introducing plans and outlining ideas and opportunities for traders to better prepare for the construction phase.
· Work to engage local suppliers and contractors for involvement in the construction occurred in 2018 with a workshop hosted by the South West Development Commission and a survey with local businesses in September 2018.
· On 7 February 2019 A Margaret River Main Street Project Public Meeting was held at the Shire office, presenting the latest plans and providing an update on key design features.
· On 13 August 2019 the Shire held a Main Street Redevelopment Information Session at Riversmith Cafe, which presented information on the staging plan and construction methodology to nearly 100 traders in the room. Feedback was sought from the traders on a number of points.
· Sustainable Economy Officer was employed in early 2019 and the Shire commenced a direct engagement approach with main street traders through face to face, email and phone particularly in Sept 2019 when over 100 traders were contacted by phone to gauge desire for the delay of the construction period.
· Monthly “Meet with Pete” sessions commenced from September 2019 where traders directly connect with the Project Manager
· The Margaret River Makeover campaign in launched in December 2019, providing a unified approach for the construction phase and was developed with close consultation with a group of main street traders.