Bounded by East Parade, Summers Street, the Swan River and the Graham Farmer Freeway, the 8.5-hectare East Perth Power Station precinct has the potential to transform into a contemporary waterfront destination for the community to interact with this iconic piece of social history at the Swan River's edge.
Its enviable location complements the new Perth Stadium and Riverside projects that are transforming Perth's eastern precinct.
Planning for this multi-purpose site supports residential, employment, community and tourism growth. Future development will deliver a pedestrian-friendly precinct supported by well established connections to major arterial roads, rail and bus networks and cycle ways.
Transforming an icon
In April 2020, Australian Capital Equity and the Minderoo Group jointly named as the preferred proponents to deliver the long-awaited revitalisation of the East Perth Power Station site, following a competitive process that included Expressions of Interest and a Request for Detailed Proposal.
The former industrial site will be transformed to accommodate a mix of new residential, commercial, recreational and tourism opportunities, breathing new life into the long neglected area and creating local jobs.
The redevelopment will retain and celebrate the heritage of the Power Station building, which will be the heart of a new modern and vibrant precinct on the banks of the Swan River for locals and tourists alike to enjoy.
The East Perth Power Station, consisting of the power station buildings, plant and equipment is listed on the Heritage Council of Western Australia.
The revitalisation will celebrate the heritage of the Power Station Building, provide public access for the community and ensure there are social and cultural benefits for all Western Australians.
In recognition of the cultural significance of the location for Whadjuk Noongar people, the Preferred Proponent has given the development a Noongar name - Koomba Kalark, meaning 'the place of the big fire'. The proponent has committed to implementing DevelopmentWA's Kaart Koort Waarnginy (KKW) Framework to engage with the Whadjuk Noongar traditional owners, and recognise and celebrate Aboriginal culture in the public realm.
Following a series of forward works to ensure site safety, an extensive program of stabilisation works ran from November 2004 until March 2006. These works included the removal of asbestos roofs and replacement with new sheeting; demolition of ancillary structures and outbuildings; repair of concrete walls; repair and reglazing of windows; repair of steel structures; and painting of the exterior.
In May 2019 the McGowan Government allocated $30 million towards preparing the site for future development. This is the largest single funding commitment towards the Project since the former EPRA took over the site in 2003. This funding will go towards de-commissioning a Western Power switchyard as well as undergrounding the transmission lines traversing the foreshore, and relocating ATCO Gas’ Pressure Reduction Station.
DevelopmentWA is responsible for management of the site to ensure its historical significance is maintained and coordinate ongoing maintenance of the buildings, landscaping and a regular security program.
East Perth Power Station History
|1913||The State Government announces it will build a power station "to generate all the electricity needed in the Perth Metropolitan area." East Perth is chosen because coal can easily be delivered by rail and the enormous quantities of cooling water required by the condensing plant can be drawn from the Swan River.|
|1916||Construction completed at a total cost of £538,000.|
|1916-1917||Power generation commences when Unit #1 goes on line on 3 December 1916. Units #2 and #3 begin generating power in March and April 1917 for a total generating capacity of 12 megawatts.|
|1922||Unit #4, a 7.5-megawatt generator added. Demand for power begins to increase rapidly. More generation is required.|
|1925||Unit #5, of 12.5-megawatt capacity, begins generating power.|
|1929||Total power generation from East Perth Power Station is 32-megawatts. The estimated capital value of the power station is £1 million.|
|1932||The State Government announces it will privatise power generation and seeks purchasers for the East Perth Power Station from the private sector. The idea is abandoned later that year, due to lack of interest.|
|1935-1938||'B' Station constructed around a massive new 25-megawatt turbo generator. 'B' Station almost doubled the capacity of the East Perth Power Station.|
|1956||A new 30-megawatt generating unit (Unit #7) commissioned.|
|1968||East Perth Power Station converts to oil (from coal).|
|1974||East Perth Power Station returns to coal firing.|
|1981||After 68 years of continual service, East Perth Power Station closed on 23 December 1981. More advanced and cheaper methods of electricity generation made the facility redundant.|
|2003||The State Government approves funding to save the heritage-listed buildings that comprise the East Perth Power Station complex.|
|2004-2006||Stabilising works undertaken.|
|2015||The State Government invites Expressions of Interest to develop the East Perth Power Station.|
|2019||The State Government announces funding to unlock the East Perth Power Station site for redevelopment and relocate the Western Power Switchyard.|