An application to install a floating helipad on Perth’s Swan River between Barrack Street and Victoria Avenue is a step closer after a development application was approved by the Western Australia Department of Parks and Wildlife on September 15.
“We now have to go through a Request for Proposal after both of our proposals were approved,” said Skyline Aviation Group’s Brett Campany.
“Perth will eventually have a floating helipad facility but not in time for this summer. It has been a long process over the last three years but there is now a light at the end of the tunnel.”
In 2013, the City of Perth released an Expression of Interest (EOI) for a new CBD helipad facility for tourism. However, it retracted the EOI after determining the cost of such a project could not be justified.
“My business partner, James Guest, and myself started researching the development and operation of the helipad in Perth,” said Campany.
“Throughout 2013 and 2014 we met with various departments of the City of Perth, Swan River Trust and the Department of Parks and Wildlife to discuss the project and were directed towards a low profile, simplistic helipad design that was sympathetic towards the visual impact of the Swan Riverbank.”
With its designs finalised, Skyline Aviation Group’s development application was submitted to be signed off by a number of state and federal government agencies including the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA). On November 3 2015, the City of Perth recommended its project for approval and also named the group as its preferred operator of the helipad.
“We have contracted a marine engineer who is currently finalising our helipad design using the CubiSystem as a floatation device and the construction of the frame, netting and deck for the helicopters to land,” said Campany.
“There is still a lot of work to do before we to commence our operations, however we are in the final stages of approval. We are hoping that we will be able to join many other tourism entities in Perth to be able to provide another attraction for all of our local, national and international guests.”
As part of its development approval, the City of Perth and the Department of Parks and Wildlife required a second helipad to be included in the design for the use by other commercial and private operators and to be capable of landing an AW139 sized helicopter for EMS or law enforcement operations.