Underwood Avenue Bushland is a unique piece of bushland on the Swan Coastal Plain. Zoned Bush Forever site 119, the 32 hectare site contains Banksia woodland and tuart, both of have been deemed or are under priority assessment for recognition as a threatened ecological community. The site also contains some of the best jarrah woodland in the Perth Metropolitan Area. It acts as a feeding ground for endangered Carnaby’s cockatoos and vulnerable red-tailed black cockatoos and forms part of an important ecological linkage between Kings Park and Bold Park.
But Underwood Avenue Bushland is now under threat from development – and stands to lose more than 50% of its total area under a plan from land owners the University of Western Australia. UWA intends to use the land to develop 12.5 hectares of residential development, 4.5ha of non-residential development and 3.1ha of public open space. This would mean that the conservation area of the site would decline to only 13.9ha.
The community and the Friends of Underwood Avenue Busland has fought long and hard stretching back to 2002 to save this patch of bushland from development. I very strongly share their view that there is no compelling need for UWA to go ahead with the proposal. The best use of Underwood Avenue Bushland is for conservation. It is Bush Forever, not just for now.