State Football Centre

The State Football Centre is jointly funded by the State and Commonwealth governments, with each contributing $16.25 million to its development at the Queens Park Open Space.

What's happening

Construction fencing is expected to go up in May to prepare the site for clearing and the beginning of construction.

Before the fencing is up, you may see people on or near the site. They will be collecting seeds and marking up vegetation that is to be collected and transplanted. This is in accordance with the approved clearing permit.

State Football Centre flythrough

Aerial view of the State Football Centre
Artist impression of the State Football Centre

State Football Centre flythrough

Forward works have commenced on the new State Football Centre, which is jointly funded by the State and Commonwealth Governments, with each contributing $16.25 million to its development at the Queens Park Open Space.

The State Football Centre will be a home for Football West’s day-to-day administration and include training facilities and playing fields to support grassroots, community and high-performance football programs.

International and A League football matches will continue to be held at HBF Park or Optus Stadium, with the occasional lower-capacity special event to be held at the State Football Centre.

It will include:

  • a two-storey building, with a grandstand (standard capacity of 700)
  • two competition and training pitches
  • provision for three 5-a-side playing pitches
  • two additional community pitches (unfunded)
  • on-site car parking.

Development of the State Football Centre

Planning for the State Football Centre has been a highly collaborative process, working closely with the City of Canning, Football West and other key stakeholders to identify the challenges of the site, including environmental, drainage, flora and fauna, traffic, parking and waste management.

The Western Australian Planning Commission approved the 16-hectare development — subject to conditions — noting the high-quality design which will help protect native bushland and provide significant economic, environmental and social benefits for the south-east metropolitan area and the broader Western Australian sporting community.

Clearing of the site

The retention of and interface to remnant bushland across the site is a key design focus of the landscaping.

The area required for the development of the State Football Centre is likely to be around six hectares. Around 4.19 ha will be cleared which will include approximately 2.51 ha that will be returned to a natural landscape with native vegetation. This includes areas that integrate with reconfigured drainage features that incorporate species suitable for a seasonally wet environment.

Final clearing permit boundaries

Updated clearing permit area with a map of the area

Access to the Queens Park Open Space during construction

Access to parts of the Queens Park Open Space area, in the north-east corner identified in the map above, will be limited. Fencing will be erected to ensure the safety of the community using the open space area during construction.

Access and use of Maniana Park will not be impacted.

Aboriginal engagement

Consultation with the Department of Planning Lands and Heritage — Aboriginal Heritage, the South West Aboriginal Land and Sea Council (SWALSC) and the City of Canning was a key consideration of the State Football Centre project.

A Heritage Survey was undertaken on the Queens Park Open Space site which included searches of the Register of Aboriginal sites for the site and surrounding land. Additionally, the Heritage Survey also consisted of a preliminary site inspection, and an on-site field survey with SWALSC nominated Whadjuk representatives. The survey established that the site “is not, and does not contain any known Aboriginal heritage sites.”

Working with the Yunga Foundation, the project has established an Aboriginal Reference Group made up of Whadjuk representatives. The reference group provides inputs relating to Aboriginal culture to the project.

Aboriginal monitors will also be engaged for relevant ground disturbance activities related to the development of the State Football Centre.

Preserving the environment

Environmental considerations

The development aims to increase the overall environmental value of the site through better protection, restoration and management of retained bushland areas and the inclusion of biodiversity connections through the site that don’t currently exist.

Careful consideration has been given to the design of the State Football Centre to ensure any disturbance to the natural vegetation is kept to a minimum while maximising opportunities to enhance the environmental significance of the site.

The design has also enabled a significant reduction of the development footprint and clearing required.

State Football Centre location and existing native vegetation

To ensure the best outcome for the natural environment, the State Football Centre development has been sited to minimise the further clearing of native vegetation.

Much of the native vegetation that would once have covered the Queens Park Open Space was cleared many years ago.

The State Football Centre clearing permit of 14.1 ha includes an area of 9.95 ha that is already cleared.

1.86 ha of existing native vegetation will also be retained and protected within natural landscaped areas, outside of the clearing permit area. Vegetation in the north-eastern portion of the development site contains a priority ecological community which incorporates both a threatened and priority flora species. These species and communities are protected at the State level, with the threatened flora species also at Federal level. This vegetation will be retained and protected as part of the development.

The clearing of the site will follow the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation’s provisions to protect the native vegetation, including:

  • weed and dieback management 
  • standard wind erosion management
  • Fauna Management Plan 
  • protect the retained Macarthuria keigheryi species with fencing and attempt to collect seeds where possible.

Revegetation

Significant areas of native revegetation and landscaping will be completed as part of the development to integrate the facility with the retained bushland and community facilities within the surrounding Queens Park Open Space area.

This will include revegetation of species consistent with that cleared to allow for habitat replacement, including those suitable for cockatoos, and native bees and other fauna that have been found on the site.

Comprehensive landscaping design which, in addition to providing greater amenity for visitors, will also protect the environmental values of the site and serve a critical stormwater function.

The revegetation will be guided by a revegetation plan that details the native species to be planted. The areas of revegetation will be transferred to conservation estate once the revegetation is established, and the City of Canning will undertake the long-term management of these areas for conservation purposes.

As part of the proposed clearing, an environmental offset package has been prepared. As part of this package, vegetation adjacent to the State Football Centre — which is currently managed for recreation purposes–is being transferred to conservation estate, and will be managed by the City of Canning in the long-term.

A rehabilitation plan will be prepared in consultation with the City of Canning to guide the ongoing management of this vegetation for conservation purposes, which will include the identification of areas suitable for infill planting and improved weed control.

Proposed rehabilitation and offset area

Proposed rehabilitation and offset map

Minimising the impact on native species

Understanding and addressing the needs of the wildlife on the site has been a major consideration in the planning process and a fauna assessment has been completed.

With our fauna management measures, the immediately surrounding habitat areas, additional revegetation proposed, and vegetation being retained, the project is not considered to pose a significant risk of impact to the aforementioned fauna or any other species that may utilise the site.

Managing fauna

In consultation with the City of Canning, a detailed fauna management plan will guide the progression of works with the aim of minimising impacts to fauna as far as is practicable. It will include:

  • A pre-clearing fauna inspection to identify potential fauna interactions, including an inspection of trees for hollows and signs of use.
  • A fauna trapping program to capture and translocate small to medium sized (translocatable) native fauna (including turtles), if such fauna is present and translocation is practical.
  • Any turtles that are captured will be accommodated temporarily and then returned to the site once the open waterbody has been constructed and is habitable.
  • A fauna spotter will be present during clearing to direct and manage works to avoid impacts to fauna wherever possible and translocate small to medium sized (translocatable) native fauna, if such fauna is present and translocation is practical. 

Any permanent fencing installed onsite will not extend to the ground and therefore allow passage of small to medium sized fauna through the site and wider area.

Wetland preservation

The mapped wetlands located on the site will be maintained and protected.

The water feature currently on the site is a drainage basin and part of broader man-made drainage network constructed in relatively recent history.

The development will reconfigure the basin to provide the necessary drainage function and maintain water conditions that support and protect the nearby wetland.

The water management strategy will incorporate measures to improve water quality across the site. The aim is to mimic the natural surface water cycle, providing additional biodiversity connection and benefits, and overall increase the value of the retained and proposed environmental assets.

Water management

The planning of the State Football Centre has provided an opportunity to accommodate conservation opportunities and best practice urban water management principles, working closely with State Government agencies and specialist consultants.

Considerations to address the water management of the site include:

  • access to an adequate supply of non-potable water for the irrigation of the associated playing fields
  • maximisation of onsite retention and infiltration of surface runoff into the superficial aquifer
  • state-of-the-art engineering, irrigation and nutrient management practices to the design of the pitches
  • water efficient fittings and fixtures to reduce water use and conserve scheme water in its facilities
  • water sensitive design principles and best management practices, to effectively manage water quality and quantity from all storm events.

Drainage

The development requires the reconfiguration of existing drainage assets across the site, including the opportunity to return the large WaterCorp stormwater basin (adjacent to Gibbs Street, north of Maniana Park) to a more natural hydrological regime. This will result in seasonal inundation of basins following winter rainfall periods, and infiltration of surface water to the superficial aquifer where possible mimicking the natural cycle. The most southern basin will be a permanent water source and will be a habitat for local fauna.

The State Football Centre design

Impact to the area

The key principles of design are centred around minimising disruption to the area — both to the environment and the local community.

Reference group

The State Football Centre reference group has 12 members, including:

  • residents, property owners or business owners in direct proximity to the site and suburb of Queens Park
  • representatives from local environment and sustainability organisations or community groups
  • representatives from local heritage, cultural and arts organisations or community groups.

The reference group will contribute ideas and suggestions, understand the opportunities and constraints of the development, represent community inputs to the development and be able to share with the community the progress of the development.

Lighting

Lighting will comply with the relevant Australian Standard which includes limiting light spill, minimising the impact of any lighting on nearby areas. 

The proposed 22-28m tall pitch lighting will have minimal impact with surrounds and will compare to the spill in the image below.

Similar to this example from the Western Sydney Wanderers Centre of Football in Blacktown International Sports Park, NSW (pictured below)

Lighting at night at the Western Sydney Wanderers Centre of Football
Western Sydney Wanderers Centre of Football in Blacktown International Sports Park, NSW

Parking

On-site car parking has been incorporated to accommodate the day-to-day activities and standard capacity of the State Football Centre.

The following parking measures will be considered, as part of any larger event management:

  • temporary signage to indicate reserved and visitor parking areas
  • permit/ticket provided to players, staff, media and VIP members for the reserved parking area
  • ‘parking full’ signage to inform drivers when all on-site parking bays are occupied
  • drop-off areas open to all users and monitored closely to ensure that visitors are not parked in these locations.

Events management

Events that exceed the standard 700-capacity of the State Football Centre will need to be planned through a separate process requiring an event management plan to understand and address any impacts to the local community.

This plan will be designed collaboratively between Football West and the City of Canning and will consider:

  • access to the area
  • parking and traffic management
  • noise requirements
  • waste management.

It is estimated that special events will occur occasionally.

Queens Park Open Space

Access to the Queens Park Open Space

Some areas of the State Football Centre, such as offices and main playing fields, will have restricted access. The majority of the broader site will be open to the public, providing much needed community recreation space.

The development of the State Football Centre will also improve access to the area. Increased activity, with more people enjoying the natural environment and open spaces, will also improve safety and walkability in the area, to the train station and beyond.

Different types of recreation will be provided for in the precinct as part of the Queens Park Open Space master plan.

The plan for the rest of the Queens Park Open Space

Maniana Park, and the surrounding open space, will continue to be an important recreation space for the community, with the potential for improvements to provide better walking and cycling trails through the site including improved connection to the local area.

The department has worked closely with the City of Canning and the community to develop a masterplan for the Queens Park Open Space to ensure the development considers the community’s ideas and suggestions.

For more detailed information on the Queens Park Open Space masterplan project and to see the final masterplan, visit Your Say Canning.

Page reviewed 07 September 2021