Popular South West RV spot set to be closed for campers in the future as council shifts from RV parking

Craig DuncanHarvey-Waroona Reporter
Christina Street Reserve was the temporary RV trial site in Australind.
Camera IconChristina Street Reserve was the temporary RV trial site in Australind. Credit: Sean Van Der Wielen/RegionalHUB

One of the South West’s most popular overnight RV stops will be closing as the Shire of Harvey shifts from RV friendly plans.

The council voted to discontinue one of its most popular 48-hour short-stay rest areas by July this year, with the Christina Street Reserve in Australind to be no longer be open to RVs.

The council began the Harvey Region RV Friendly Trial in April 2023 and found success with sites in Australind, Harvey, Brunswick Junction and Yarloop.

The most popular has been the Australind site, drawing in 379 bookings from April 2023 to February 2024.

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Despite the success, the council decided it would no longer continue to permit RVs to visit the popular rest spot as of July 1, 2024.

The motion came as an amendment from deputy shire president John Bromham who said it was not practical to have an overnight camping spot in such a highly residential area.

“Australind is a self-sufficient community that doesn’t need the small amounts of income that these bays may bring to its businesses whilst the residents pay the cost to manage and police the sites,” he said.

Also in support of the move was Cr Craig Carbone, who said Australind was a prime waterfront area.

“If we are going to talk about bringing people into the shire with tourism, talk about theme parks, wineries, walk trails or a zoo,” he said.

“Putting caravans on an area of prime waterfront like Christina Street is madness.

“We have shires right next door to us in Dardanup and Bunbury with RV parking, they can use their facilities.”

Cr Joe Capogreco said he was a big advocate of the trial and was not in favour of removing Australind from the trial area.

“The whole idea was to bring tourists to our shire, and Australind is included in that shire,” he said.

“I think we need to have a location in Australind as part of our shire.

“We should want people to visit Australind as much as they visit Yarloop, Brunswick and Harvey.”

Cr Wendy Dickinson said she fully supported all the locations.

“I do not understand why we would drop having an Australind site when it has shown to be successful,” she said.

The amendment vote passed 8-3, with only Cr Dickinson, Cr Capogreco and Cr Robyn Coleman voting against.

The council ultimately voted to continue the operation of other RV rest sites in Harvey, Brunswick Junction and Yarloop, and hopes the closure of Australind will encourage more visitors to use South Western Highway and stop in these rural towns.

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