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Bellevue East Land Use Study 

In 2012 the City of Swan appointed consultants to conduct a land use study for Bellevue East, being that 

area immediately south east of the Roe Highway and Great Eastern Highway interchange, extending as far 

south as Wilkins Street.  The Bellevue East Land Use Study (BELUS) was intended to set a direction for 

development and revitalisation of the area, identifying critical short to medium term interventions and actions 

to facilitate desired land use outcomes. This was largely in response to public concerns associated with the 

encroachment and expansion of industrial/commercial developments, and the operation of existing 

businesses within the existing predominantly residential neighbourhood.  

A series of government agency and community workshops were held in undertaking  the Bellevue East Land 

Use study, with formal advertising subsequently taking place between March and May 2013.  The City of 

Swan adopted the BELUS in August 2013, with the following study findings and recommendations being of 

relevance to the Helena Valley area: 


Identifies a potential future road link across the railway line, effectively connecting Katharine Street 

northwards to Horace Street. Also identifies a potential pedestrian link over the railway in the proximity of 

Bellevue Road.  Both potential links present opportunities to improve north-south movement linkages and 

ties to the Midland/Midvale area.  


Recommends that the City request the Passenger Transport Authority (PTA) reinvestigate the possibility 

for a rail station ‘within or near’ the study area in light of the proposed increase in residential development 

and general increase in activity.  


Recommends the City request the PTA investigate the potential for Clayton Street to accommodate 

improved east-west bus services, connecting Koongamia with Bellevue and ultimately the future Midland 

Health Campus and train station further west.  



Midland Revitalisation Charrette 

In 1997, the Midland Charrette was held by the then Ministry for Planning and the City of Swan to generate 

ideas for revitalisation in the Midland area and surrounds. The Charrette recommended the establishment of 

a redevelopment authority, with the Midland Redevelopment Authority subsequently established in 2000. 

During the Charrette, Main Roads WA identified the lack of an alternative north-south distributor road parallel 

to (east of) the Roe Highway as a challenge for non-strategic traffic movements in the locality.  The 

extension of Katharine Street north of Clayton Street, over the railway and linking into Horace Street (and 

then Great Eastern Highway) was contemplated as a potential solution to this issue, however, has not been 

implemented to date.  This option is again being considered as part of the Bellevue East Land Use Study, 

and has the potential to facilitate improved district traffic movements between Helena Valley and key 

employment/activity areas via Katharine Street. 

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Bushmead MRS Amendment 

Located immediately south west of the study area (and within the City of Swan), the ‘Bushmead Rifle Range’ 

site was previously owned and operated by the Commonwealth Government Department of Defence until its 

sale to Dunland Property Pty Ltd  in 2010.  No longer used for defence activities, the opportunity now exists 

to develop those cleared portions of the site with reduced environmental significance for residential 


An amendment to the MRS (MRS Amendment No. 1242/41) is currently being pursued to facilitate this 

outcome, seeking to transfer portions of land from the ‘Public Purpose – Commonwealth Government’ and 

‘Parks and Recreation’ reservation to the ‘Urban’ and ‘Urban Deferred’ zone to facilitate further structure 

planning and subdivision of the land.   A concurrent amendment to the City of Swan Local Planning Scheme 

No.17 is also being sought (as previously described in Section 2.9 of this report).  An extract of the proposed 

MRS amendment map is provided at Figure 10.  

Preliminary Structure Planning for the area suggests the subdivision and development of two urban cells, 

one in the north western portion of the site, accessed from Midland Road, and another in the eastern portion 

of the site, accessed by Sadler Drive and Ridge Hill Road.  Residential densities ranging between R5-R15 

and R30-R60 are contemplated, with open space and recreation needs met through a network of local and 

neighbourhood parks.  Discussions with the proponent have revealed that the Bushmead site is likely to yield 

in the order of 600 dwellings, although 200-300 of these may only be deliverable in the medium to longer 


Of particular relevance to the Helena Valley study is the western development cell of Bushmead, and its 

future interface with the adjacent residential area of Helena Valley.  This is noted as a key 

recommendation/action in the Shire of Mundaring draft Local Planning Strategy: 

“Pursue opportunities for improved access and connectivity between Helena Valley and future Bushmead 

development areas, and improved pedestrian/cycle links along/across the Helena River.” 

The opportunity exists, via negotiations as part of the proposed MRS amendment and structure planning 

process, to further consider the provision of a new road link between Helena Valley Road and the future 

Bushmead development area (potentially along the western edge of Kadina Brook). The provision of a short 

access leg (to be removed of its current Bush Forever site status) in this location is provided for via the 

proposed MRS amendment, however, the ultimate form/function of this link is not clearly defined at this 

stage.  The formalisation of this link as a functional access road, rather than an informal track or fire 

access/egress point, should be further advocated and secured via detailed structure planning for the site 



Bellevue MRS Amendment 

Located to the north of the study area and south of Wilkins Street in the locality of Bellevue, approximately 

33.85ha of land is proposed to be transferred from the ‘Rural’ zone and ‘Parks and Recreation’ reservation to 

the ‘Urban’ and ‘Rural’ zones. The proposed ‘Urban’ zoning will allow for residential subdivision of the land 

following a local scheme amendment, detailed structure planning and subdivision approval.  The proposed 

‘Rural’ zone will provide for less intense private land use within an area affected by the ANEF 25 noise 

contour (and hence not permitted for residential use).  The proposal seeks to facilitate subdivision and 

development of approximately 350 new dwellings, within close proximity to (effectively bordering) the HVLUS 


The amendment also defines the boundary between the ‘Urban’ zone and ‘Parks and Recreation’ reservation 

for the Helena River, and is the subject of a Deed of Agreement between the landowner and WAPC with 

respect to the reserve’s rehabilitation, management and transfer of ownership. Specifically, the owner of Lot 

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800 (No.1100 Katharine Street) has agreed to transfer the modified ‘Parks and Recreation’ reserve for the 

sum of $1.00, and to carry out agreed restoration works and maintain them for a period of 25 years following 


MRS Amendment 1228/41 commenced advertising for public comment on 13 August 2013, with submissions 

due by the 15th November 2013. An extract of the proposed MRS amendment map is provided at Figure 11

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Environment and heritage 

The following provides a summary of environmental and heritage considerations for the Helena Valley study 

area, with further environmental advice from RPS Environment provided Appendix 1




The topography of the project area undulates gently from an elevation of approximately 65m Australian 

Height Datum (AHD) in the east, where the laterised foothills begin to transition to the Darling Scarp, to an 

elevation of approximately 11m AHD in the west, where the relatively flat landscape of the Swan Coastal 

Plain commences (Western Australian Atlas: Shared Land Information Platform, 2012). 



Geology and soils 

The landform unit which underlies the project area is the Forrestfield soil association. This soil association is 

comprised of predominantly light grey colluvial quartz sands, clays and silts with intrusions of gravel, which 

may be at the surface or at depth. Creeklines are characterised by clays and sandy clays (Swan Catchment 

Council, 2004). 

The Darling Range Rural Land Capability Study


 identifies the following soil types/land units within the 

Helena Valley study area:  


Guildford (Gf5) and Swan (Sw3) soil types typically found in the western low lying portions of the site and 

along the Helena River alignment.  These soils are typified as being poor draining, and as such, generally 

unsuitable for residential or rural residential land use/development unless sufficiently planned and 

constructed to ensure adequate sewerage (no septics) and management/stripping of nutrients from 

overland water flows (to maintain river water quality).  


Forrestfield (F2) soils found in the central and southern portions of the study area, typically characterised 

as well drained gravelly yellow or brown duplex soils with sandy topsoil. Being better draining, these soils 

are more capable of supporting residential and rural/residential land uses. 


Pockets of Dwellingup (D3), Yalanbee (Y1) and Mambup (Mm1) land units are present in the eastern 

portions of the study area, and are typically well draining given their gravelly soils and therefore 

considered capable of supporting a range of residential/rural-residential land uses.  



Acid Sulfate Soils 

WAPC Planning Bulletin No. 64 has mapped the risk of Acid Sulfate Soils (ASS) occurring for the Helena 

Valley area.  Mapping provided at Figure 12 illustrates extent of the project area identified as having a “High 

to Moderate” risk and “Moderate to Low” risk of ASS occurring within 3 metres of the natural soil surface. 

Preliminary ASS investigations are required for any proposed development in areas mapped within these 

risk categories, to confirm the presence or absence of ASS prior to any site earth works being undertaken.  








 PD King and MR Wells (2012), Darling Range Rural Land Capability Study, Department of Agriculture, Perth. 

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Groundwater depth is generally between 15m and 7m in the north western portion of the study area, which is 

the only area with available data via the Department of Water’s (DoW) Perth Groundwater Atlas

Groundwater flow appears to be in a north-westerly direction across the site towards confluence of the 

Helena River with the Swan River. Groundwater quality in the area is generally described by the DoW as 

‘unsuitable’ for use for domestic irrigation in preference to scheme water, although there is no information 

available for that area east of Maguire Road/Ridge Hill Road/Scott Street.


Helena River 

The Helena River flows from east to west through the Helena Valley study area, and provides the function of 

a natural drainage channel, transporting overland flows from the surrounding catchment during high intensity 

rainfall events. The lower reaches of the Helena River can be subject to substantial flooding and the sandy 

fluvial deposits of its river bed can be subject to erosion, particularly in areas where the fringing vegetation 

has been degraded or removed. 

Discussions with the Department of Water has confirmed that 1 in 100 year flood risk mapping was carried 

out in 1987, identifying areas of floodway and flood fringe for the lower reaches of the Helena River. This 

flood mapping considered the Lower Helena Pipehead Dam as being in place (reducing flooding 

frequency/volume further downstream), and identified a clearly defined channel to accommodate water flows 

during flood events. Importantly, the modelling underpinning the mapping also included allowances for a 

number of bridge crossings, including the existing bridge at Scott Street along with a crossing at Samson 

Street (which remains unconstructed).  The DoW confirmed that opportunities  exist to further review and/or 

amend the defined floodway to accommodate certain development/land use types (e.g. community facilities, 

playing fields etc), however such reviews would need to demonstrate that downstream flood levels are not 

further impacted.  

To protect the integrity of the Helena River’s water quality, associated riparian vegetation communities, the 

banks of the watercourse and to mitigate potential flooding, development controls are required to ensure the 

floodway/flood fringe is protected (and ultimately restored). The Shire of Mundaring intend to introduce such 

controls through the implementation of a Special Control Area (SCA) under draft Local Planning Scheme 

No.4 (as discussed in Section 2.7).



There are three distinct management categories for geomorphic wetlands in Western Australia, described 



Conservation (C) - Wetlands supporting a high level of ecological attributes and functions; 


Resource Enhancement (RE) - Wetlands which may have been partially modified but still support 

substantial ecological attributes and functions; and 


Multiple Use (MU) - Wetlands with few important ecological attributes and functions remaining. 

Figure 12 

identifies the location of wetlands within the study area, by management category. It confirms the 

presence of Conservation, Resource Enhancement and Multiple Use category wetlands in the western 

portion of the site associated with the Helena River floodplain and Kadina Brook.  It also identifies a small 

Conservation category wetland centrally in the study area, affecting ‘Rural Landscape Living’ zoned 

properties southeast of Katharine Street. 

Helena Valley Land Use Study 

October 2013 





PR112870-1; DraftB, October 2013 

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In accordance with the Environmental Protection Authority’s (EPA) Environmental Guidance for Planning and 

Development (EPA, 2008), it is recommended that development not be proposed within C and RE wetlands 

or their buffers (50 metres for C and 30 metres for RE).  



Vegetation and Flora 

Figure 13

 illustrates that the known locations of Threatened and Priority flora species within the project area 

are within identified Conservation Priority Areas (as identified in the Shire of Mundaring draft Local Planning 

Strategy). Threatened Flora are protected under the Wildlife Conservation Act 1950, whilst Priority Flora, are 

not specifically covered under the Wildlife Conservation Act 1950, however their conservation status 

warrants some protection. 

A search of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Act 1999 (EPBC Act) Protected Matters Search Tool 

identified 15 threatened flora species and three threatened ecological communities (TECs) that may be 

present within the project area, with three TECs known to occur within the area: 


Corymbia calophylla – Kingia australis

 woodlands on heavy soils of the Swan Coastal Plain 


Corymbia calophylla – Xanthorrhoea preissii

 woodlands and shrublands of the Swan Coastal Plain 


Shrublands and woodlands of the eastern Swan Coastal Plain. 

Appropriate flora and vegetation surveys are required to be undertaken on a site specific basis to identify 

and assess the values of the existing flora and vegetation upon extents of land proposed to be developed.   




The EPBC Act Protected Matters Search Tool identified six threatened fauna species that may be present 

within the project area (and a radius of five kilometres surrounding the site): 


Carnaby’s Black-Cockatoo (Calyptorhynchus latirostris


Forrest red-tailed black cockatoo (Calyptorhynchus banksia naso


Baudin’s black cockatoo (Calyptorhynchus baudinii


Malleefowl (Leipoa ocellata


Australian painted snipe (Rostratula australis


Chuditch (Dasyurus geoffroii). 

As part of future development proposals in the area, appropriate fauna assessments / surveys will be 

required on a site specific basis to identify and assess the values of the existing habitat for species of 

conservation significant fauna. 




A search of the Department of Environment and Conservation’s (DEC) Contaminated Sites Database was 

conducted on 31 July 2012, which indicated that one site was recorded within the project area. The 

landholding at 164 Scott Street (Lot 47 on diagram 46741), Helena Valley has been classified by the DEC as 

“Remediated for Restricted Use”, and is restricted to commercial / industrial use due to the presence of 

hydrocarbons in the soil.  The location of this contaminated site is illustrated at Figure 14

In order to identify if any addition potential contamination constraints are likely to impact potential 

development within the project area, a regional Preliminary Site Investigation should be undertaken to detect 

if any additional potential constraints are present within the project area and where further assessment may 

be required. 

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October 2013 





PR112870-1; DraftB, October 2013 

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Land use constraints 

WAPC Statement of Planning Policy 5.1 Land Use Planning in Vicinity of Perth Airport, gives force to 

Australian Noise Exposure Forecast (ANEF) contours for Perth Airport. These measure the anticipated 

cumulative noise impacts over a year for future flight movements.  ANEF 20, 25 and 30 contours have been 

identified in draft LPS4, and designated as a Special Control Area (as noted in Section 2.7 of this report). 

This SCA applies to the western portion of the Helena Valley study area adjacent to the Roe Highway (that 

land currently zoned Rural under the MRS). 

Generally, residential land uses are not permitted within the ANEF 25 contour, whilst specific residential 

development requirements will apply to any proposed residential development within the ANEF 20 contour 

(and outside the 25 contour).  Inside of the ANEF 25 contour, certain non-residential land uses, including 

service commercial, may be permitted subject to necessary zonings and development controls.  



Aboriginal heritage 

Registered Aboriginal Heritage Sites and Other Heritage Places are protected under the Aboriginal Heritage 

Act 1972

. According to the Department of Indigenous Affairs (DIA) Aboriginal Heritage Database, there are 

some 14 “Registered Aboriginal Heritage Sites” and 16 “Other Heritage Places” falling within the study area.  

Should development be proposed in areas where Aboriginal sites have been identified, it is recommended 

that advice be sought from the DIA or a specialist Aboriginal Heritage Consultant to ensure compliance with 

the Aboriginal Heritage Act 1972. Additionally, should any Aboriginal objects be identified or unearthed 

during development activities then under the Aboriginal Heritage Act 1972, the findings must be reported to 

the DIA. 



European heritage 

A search of the State Heritage Office’s database revealed that two places listed on the State Register of 

Heritage Places within the study area (refer Figure 14): 


Belle View / Helena Farm (place number 3836)

 – This place incorporates most of Lot 800 (No.1100) 

Katharine/Wilkins Streets, which falls mostly outside of the study area, but does extend into the north 

western portion of the study area. The place comprises single-storey, brick and iron, Victorian Regency 

style residence, together with stables and former barn.   


Clayton Farm (place number 03839) 

– This place comprises a portion of Lot 27 (No.110) Clayton Road, 

Helena Valley, and relates to a two storey brick and iron residence in the Victorian Georgian style (1861), 

a single storey brick and iron cottage in vernacular style (c.1850s), and a brick lined well, in a rural setting 

relating to the Helena River. The place is the oldest remaining farmhouse on the Helena River, retains a 

high degree of integrity and authenticity, and is an excellent example of its style. It is a rare, intact 

example of a two-storey colonial homestead that was built on a portion of a land grant made in the first 

three years of colonial settlement, as part of the system of land grants involving narrow land parcels with 

river frontage.



Heritage Places are protected under the Heritage of Western Australia Act 1990. Should development be 

proposed upon any place listed on the Register of Heritage Places, it is recommended that advice be sought 








 SHO (2012), State Heritage Register, State Heritage Office, Perth.  

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from the State Heritage Office or a specialist European Heritage Consultant to ensure compliance with the 

Heritage of Western Australia Act 1990

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