The City of Perth will be "the big winners" from the Elizabeth Quay project through "hundreds of millions" in rates and eventual ownership of the precinct once it is completed in 10 to 15 years, according to Colin Barnett.
The Premier was responding to complaints from Lord Mayor Lisa Scaffidi that the City of Perth should gain ownership of six food and beverage outlets because they were on land given to the State by the city.
Mr Barnett agreed the city had ceded the land to the State, but said it was only in a position to do so because the State had given the land to it in 1916 for recreation.
"When the precinct is complete, it will be handed back to the city," he said.
Ms Scaffidi labelled Mr Barnett's rates assessment "over-imaginative", citing a city report putting the project's estimated annual rate income at $9.93 million.