CANNING council approved a $5 million waste transfer station development in Welshpool last week despite strong opposition from local business leaders.
Seven councillors voted to support a City of Canning recommendation to permit Cleanaway Solid Waste Pty Ltd to operate a waste transfer station from 16-30 Sheffield Road that will see 540 tonnes of solid waste, including food waste, processed at the site each day.
Three councillors – Mayor Paul Ng, Deputy Mayor Lindsay Holland and Cr Jesse Jacobs – voted against the City’s recommendation.
The facility will employ six people on site and is subject to a raft of conditions to assist in mitigating any odour, dust and litter associated with the development.
A petition was received by council containing 263 signatures from people who work in the Welshpool area against the facility, concerned about its impact on road safety and the amenity of the area.
The waste transfer station will see waste transported to the site by 75 waste delivery vehicles, generating about 150 vehicle movements per day.
A further 20 road trains per day are proposed to take waste off site.
Senior company leaders told Canning Times that if the Cleanaway proposal went ahead there were likely to be staff losses, industrial action and business leaving the industrial precinct.
Jason Windows managing director Brendon O’Reilly, was one of five business representatives to attend last week’s ordinary council meeting to ask questions about the facility.
Mr O’Reilly, whose business is located opposite the waste facility site, said his key concern was the impact of traffic generated by the station on his business operations.
A City officer said all conditions placed on the facility would be proactively enforced by the City.
In a report to council City officers said Cleanaway had demonstrated the trucks could be accommodated and manoeuvred in a compliant manner within the property.
City engineers supported the methodology and findings of the traffic impact statement and said the increase in vehicle trips on the local road network were acceptable.
Officers also reported that Cleanaway had demonstrated that odour and dust would not go beyond the site’s boundaries.
Cr Ayse Martli, who voted in support of the City’s recommendation, said council was trying to attract businesses into Welshpool.
“If not in Welshpool then where can it go? It will generate income for council. Council will be monitoring this,” she said.
Cr Jacobs queried the use of 2011 data in the traffic impact statement however failed in his motion to defer the matter for a month to make sure council’s decision was the “best and the most robust” it could be.
“I have to try and stand up for businesses that are already there. If this facility comes in we will get the extra rates but we are going to lose other businesses,” Cr Jacobs said.
“I am sure that we could find a place for (Cleanway) that is really ideal. The traffic situation is not ideal.”
The City received 60 submissions in relation to the application, two were returned ‘no comment’, 20 no-objections and 38 objections.