Rush to put Perth Modern school in Northbridge ‘not viable’
Bethany Hiatt, The West Australia, May 6th, 2017
Rushing to build a high-rise public school in the city would be an irresponsible use of taxpayers’ money on a project that may not be financially viable, a chartered professional engineer has warned the State Government.
Helen Pedersen, an engineer with more than 20 years experience and a past president of Engineers Australia WA Division, said her analysis of the Government’s preliminary plan for the multi-storey school rang alarm bells.
“The project could cost double what an equivalent school would cost, has less than a third of the open space of an equivalent school and holds very, very high commercial risk.”
Ms Pedersen, who has a daughter at Perth Modern School, said the cost to build a new school in a built-up area was around $2000 per square metre, but Education Central was likely to cost more than $4000/sqm.
“The State could build two schools for what it will spend on Education Central,” she said.