GINGIN Shire has voted to rezone unallocated Crown land in Lancelin as a tourism precinct to develop a new caravan park.
The council moved to provide “in-principle support” to Tourism WA to rezone land adjacent to Hopkins Street and Casserley Way.
The plan has split the quiet coastal town down the middle with its 600-odd residents on one side and regular holidaymakers on the other.
Gingin Shire president Michael Aspinall said a new caravan park site was imperative if the town was to survive.
“The crayfishing industry is dying,” he said.
“This town will die with it if something isn’t done. The town now relies on tourism, so we need somewhere to house visitors,” he said.
However, Thea Bailey, who has had a holiday home in Lancelin for the past 23 years, said she was most unhappy with the Shire’s decision to develop the park opposite a residential area.
A public meeting held in Lancelin about 12 months ago drew about 200 people.
“The public meeting had a lot of opposition to the proposed caravan site, as many people living on Casserley Way don’t want the extra noise and traffic around a quiet residential area,” Ms Bailey said.
However, Lancelin Community Resource Centre co-ordinator Lorna Murray said most permanent town residents fully supported the plan.
“We need to make a living here,” she said.
“Those who do not live here permanently want us to remain stagnant, so they can have their holidays.”
Mr Aspinall said although there was bound to be some inconvenience with the proposed development, he felt the Shire would find ways to minimise its effect.
“It is an extremely valuable piece of land and that is why we are looking at a new caravan park development,” he said.
By Caroline Frank, Advocate
New Lancelin Caravan Park concept & feasibility study by Brighthouse for Tourism WA.
For caravan park design and information call Brighthouse Strategic Consultants