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State moves on Shenton Village

THE State Government has provided conditional agreement to purchase failed retirement village project, Shenton Village, out of receivership.

Housing and Works Minister Nick Griffiths said the decision to acquire the 66-unit retirement complex, built on the site of the old Shenton Park Hotel on Nicholson Road, was driven by the strong demand for seniors’ housing in inner-city Perth.

The move by the Government to purchase the property goes some way to reimbursing the complicated web of investors involved in the project.

Launched in August 2002, Shenton Park Retirement Village Pty Ltd had attempted to sell the village units on a lifelong lease contract for between $285,000 and $435,000. After two years of marketing, none of the units had sold.

Last year, BankWest called in receivers PricewaterhouseCoopers to recover more than $20 million invested in the project. In addition, it’s understood individual investors, who part-financed the development, are owed around $7 million.

Despite the project attracting more than 20 expressions of interest when Pricewaterhouse-Coopers advertised the property last year, WA Business News understands the ownership structure and financial arrangements pertaining to the property had made it difficult for a private sale to occur.

Mr Griffiths said the purchase of the property enabled the Government to provide more affordable accommodation for seniors close to support facilities such as hospitals, and had the support of the City of Subiaco.

“Seniors’ housing accords with the original intent of the unit complex and the terms of the council’s development approval,” he said.

Department of Housing and Works director general Greg Joyce said the department would seek to use the former hotel for special needs accomodation.

He said there were significant applicants in this area already on the department’s waiting list.

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