INSUFFICIENT vehicle access in emergencies could hold back plans for a $25 million aged care facility in Alkimos.
The Metro North-West Development Assessment Panel is due to consider Aegis Aged Care Group’s plans for a Magellan Road facility this Friday.
The agenda, prepared by City of Wanneroo staff, recommends the development application be refused because the Department of Fire and Emergency Services (DFES) said the bushfire management plan is not acceptable.
According to the report due to be considered by the panel on September 1, both DFES and the City of Wanneroo have said the development would need two road accesses.
The proposal is classes as a vulnerable land use, and would feature a two-storey facility with 134 beds, communal areas, basement parking with 85 bays and have up to 50 staff.
“The proposed development application is for a vulnerable land use in a bushfire prone area with only one point of access and egress from the development area,” the report said.
“In light of the bushfire management plan not being endorsed by DFES, the City is not in a position to recommend support of the application.”
The DFES comment said assessment of the plan did “not provide for fire and emergency personnel to access the development easily and safely at all times during an emergency”.
“Shelter in place is an option of last resort; it is not acceptable as a substitute for two access routes,” it said.
The 9891sq m site is located in the eastern section of Peet’s Shorehaven estate, opposite Northshore Christian Grammar School, with vacant lots on surrounding streets.
The current road network allows access to Marmion Avenue via Bainbridge Avenue to Maroon Avenue and then Bluewater Drive.
According to the City, an acceptable solution would be providing two access routes that connect to the public road network and different destinations.
“Scotthorn Drive is identified to be extended south, through the undeveloped area covered by the central Alkimos agreed structure plan, however, there is no timeframe for development in this area,” the report said.
The report includes an alternative recommendation if the five-member panel opts to approve the plans, with several conditions, including that a bushfire management plan be prepared and endorsed by DFES and the City.
In terms of traffic impact, it said the expected 278 vehicle trips per day would not have a material impact on surrounding roads.
According to the report, the City waived advertising public consultation following discussions with the applicant because the developer Peet owned most of the surrounding land and had agreed to tell prospective buyers about the plans.
The City did advise the school of the proposal, but had not received any comment before preparing the report.
In March, the Federal Government gave Aegis approval to provide 120 aged care beds in Alkimos.