'Symbolic step forward': City of Mandurah first council in WA to dual-name local buildings

Photo: File Image.
Photo: File Image.

In a WA-first, the City of Mandurah will dual-name a number of local buildings to recognise and honour First Australians.

In a move described as "meaningful" and "symbolic" by councillors, elected members voted unanimously at a meeting in June to give four City buildings additional Noongar names.

Council chambers will now also be known as Boordiya Mia which refers to the house or place of leaders and decision makers, while the administration building will also be known as Yoolin Mia - the house or place of the people who support the leaders to implement their vision.

The Mandurah Seniors and Community Centre will also go by Dandjoo Kaadadjan Mia, which means the house or place of people coming together to connect and share wisdom.

The Billy Dower Youth Centre will have a dual name of Moorditj Mia - safe or fun place.

At the council meeting, Peter Rogers said he was "ecstatic" to move the motion.

Mayor Rhys Williams, who seconded the motion, said Mandurah should be "proud" of this decision.

"I am a resident of a community that, for a long time, has committed itself to stepping outside of the box and in front of the pack," he said.

A report presented to councillors said the dual-naming of prominent local buildings was a learning opportunity for the "whole community" and supported the "recovery and revival of Noongar language".

The buildings will be 'rebranded' with new signage to include both names, the cost of which is included in the current budget.

It is hoped in the future the signs will also include Indigenous art designed by a local Aboriginal artist.

In an interview with the Mandurah Mail, Mr Williams described the move as a "symbolic and practical step forward".

"Our reconciliation journey is something that Mandurah has been working on for a while," he said.

"The dual-naming of our community buildings is just another step on that reconciliation journey.

"Mandurah can really be proud of its leadership in this space of reconciliation and acknowledging the contributions of Indigenous Australians."

As part of the council's decision, a number of other buildings around the City will also be considered for dual-naming in the next financial year, including the Mandurah Aquatic and Recreation Centre, Mandurah Library, Falcon eLibrary and Lakelands Library and Community Centre, the Mandurah Community Museum, Mandurah Ocean Marina and City Works Depot.