Manning Park Trails Working Group

The City of Cockburn's response to the Fremantle Herald on 11 November 2021 about the Manning Park Trails Working Group

Question: The FMPR say that the consultant chosen is not independent because he is a “motor-cross and mountain bike trail consultant”. I note that his website mentions a far broader range of consultancies, including leisure and open space, but would the City care to comment on why he was chosen?
Dave Lanfear of Dave Lanfear Consulting Pty Ltd is not a motor-cross and mountain bike trail consultant. He has over 30 years of experience across a range of industry sectors. Mr Lanfear’s background is primarily as a land use planner who specialises in stakeholder engagement. His reputation is for developing and implementing impartial processes.

Question: The FMPR say the working group’s terms of reference have been skewed towards mountain biking at the expense of the ridge’s ecology, essentially by restricting them to the question “what type of mountain bike trails should be built and where”. Does this indicate a pre-determined outcome?
This is incorrect. The terms of reference refer to a ‘potential trail network’. There has been no pre-determination to commit to building trails, or prioritise mountain bike access, by either staff or Council.

Question: The FMPR complain that botanists recommended by the FMPR and the Community Wildlife Corridor were rejected by the city as working group members. Wouldn’t their expertise be extremely useful on a committee investigating the use of bushland? How has the city ensured that the ecology of the ridge is taken into consideration by the working group - what environmental expertise has been included within members?
The group includes a representative from the Cockburn Community Wildlife Corridor and the Friends of Manning Ridge. Two members on the group are also members of the Beeliar Group – Professors for Environmental Responsibility, and one member also sits on the Beeliar Regional Advisory Committee.

A representative from the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions will also attend working group meetings. They will not have any involvement in discussions but will be on hand to answer any technical questions that arise.

There were 53 expressions of interest to be on the working group and not everyone could be chosen. There was a weighting towards people who lived in the City of Cockburn and the botanists did not. Having said that, the botanists are welcome to supply information to the group via The Friends of Manning Ridge.

Council staff with tertiary qualifications in Environmental Management and Botany will also attend the workshops.

It should be noted that the trails in Manning Park already exist. The City is reviewing the proposal to close some trails down to rehabilitate them while potentially making a more sustainable network for trail users.

Manning Park is popular with bike riders, walkers, and runners and there are existing conflicts between groups. The aim is to reduce conflict by providing a sustainable network of trails with adequate signage. This will all be subject to a Council decision.

For further information, including the Working Group Terms of Reference, please visit the City’s Manning Park Trails Network Proposal | Comment on Cockburn page.
Please also visit the Manning Park Trails - The Facts - City of Cockburn on our website. 

For more information contact

Media and Communications Officer
City of Cockburn

Email [email protected]

Phone 08 9411 3551

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Cockburn Nyungar moort Beeliar boodja-k kaadadjiny. Koora, yeyi, benang baalap nidja boodja-k kaaradjiny.
Ngalak kaadatj dayin boodja, kep wer malayin. Ngalak kaadatj koora koora wer yeyi ngalang birdiya.

City of Cockburn acknowledges the Nyungar people of Beeliar boodja. Long ago, now and in the future they care for Country.
We acknowledge a continuing connection to land, waters and culture and pay our respects to the Elders, past and present.