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$130,000 to be spent on Forrest Place unrest

ANTI-social behaviour in Forrest Place will be acted on with Council committing $130,000 to improving the area.

The improvements to the square will include $80,000 for enhanced public lighting to improve security and provide better recognition of people.

The short term improvements were identified in the report Anti-Social Behaviour in Forrest Place, Short Term Measures to Improve Security and Ambience, released in April.

Local tenants, namely the State Government, Commonwealth Bank, Forrest Chase and Australia Post, will be approached to share in the costs of the project.

Besides an anticipated $30,000 from these stakeholders, an additional $25,000 will be sought from the Safer WA Community Security Program.

Other measures include the relocation of two infra-red security cameras to provide better cover of the area and the more arm rests on public seats to prevent people lying down on them.

Councillor Jennifer MacGill said she welcomed the move because it gave a clear message to the community that the only people not welcomed in Perth are those involved in anti-social behaviour.

Councillor Tess Stroud was sceptical of the measures and its effectiveness.

“I’m not holding my breath,” she said.

Lord Mayor Peter Nattrass said, while he believed the measures would help, the most effective way to reduce anti-social behaviour was through a police presence in the form of a police post in Forrest Place.

“If you have just a small post it will ensure the police will continue to have a presence there – even if it is just to put the kettle on,” Dr Nattrass said.

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