Anglican school not far off

Inset: Artist’s impression of St James Anglican School in Alkimos, designed by DW Architects.
Inset: Artist’s impression of St James Anglican School in Alkimos, designed by DW Architects.

The site extends from the northwest corner of Marmion Avenue and Graceful Boulevard in the Alkimos Beach estate.

Chief executive Reverend Peter Laurence said the first stage of the school would open in 2015 for students from Kindergarten to Year 6, and grow with its students over the following six years, reaching Year 12 in 2021.

Mr Laurence said the primary school site would be located along Graceful Boulevard, and the co-located St James Chapel, currently in Yanchep, would be on the corner overlooking the Marmion Avenue roundabout.

‘The initial development for the first four years of the school will be along Graceful Boulevard,’ he said. ‘Once we get to the end of the four years, we will start building our secondary school.’

Mr Laurence said the school could have 150 to 200 students when it opens, and they planned for it to grow to 1200, with contingency plans for 1500 students.

DW Architects have designed a masterplan and Mr Laurence said the secondary school would have a series of terraces with double-storey buildings surrounding a senior-sized oval.

He said the commission had been planning for the school for about three years, and this year secured the site after developers Lend Lease and LandCorp sought expressions of interest.

‘The combined dollar value of the land and the first stage is about $15 million,’ Mr Laurence said. ‘Over the next decade to 15 years, there’s probably at least another $25 to 30 million of buildings.’

Mr Laurence said the commission and Anglican Diocese of Perth had agreed a few years ago to start co-locating parish chapels with schools, with the first in the Swan Valley, and Alkimos due to be the second.

He said without the support of the diocese, the school could not have afforded to build a chapel so early on, with the facility also expected to open in 2015.

‘The chapel will be built on the corner and will look out over the estate and Marmion,’ he said.

Mr Laurence said the commission might start looking at building a school in Yanchep in 10 to 12 years, having had gaps of about 15 years between opening St Mark’s in Hillarys, Peter Moyes in Mindarie and now St James in Alkimos.

A steering committee, which includes Reverend John Taylor from St James Parish, has already formed, and Mr Laurence said the commission received about 20 applications for the principal position it recently advertised.

He said the principal would start in term two next year, and enrolments for St James would open today.