Clarkson office wanted for mosque

The United Australian Islamic Association wants an office in Clarkson as a mosque.d404741
The United Australian Islamic Association wants an office in Clarkson as a mosque.d404741

Wanneroo City councillors will consider a retrospective application from the group at tonight’s council meeting regarding a unit on Sarasota Pass.

According to the July 23 agenda, the association had previously operated with planning approval in a unit on Ainsbury Parade, Clarkson, but had to relocate because it was unable to renew its lease.

At the July 16 briefing session, the City’s acting planning and sustainability director Mark Dickson said the applicant wanted to change the permitted use from office to place of worship, which was a discretionary use, and would use it as a mosque.

During consultation of 14 surrounding landowners in January, five people made submissions, and Mr Dickson said all their objections related mostly to car parking and noise.

‘There are 18 on-street bays within 50 metres, which administration considered sufficient,’ he said.

Mr Dickson said the applicant had originally sought permission to operate from 4.30am to 9pm, but following a meeting with the City and other landowners in May, had amended their application to operate between 6am and 8pm. However, the staff report recommended the hours of operation be restricted to between 8am and 8pm, aligning with operating hours of businesses in the area.

‘With residential development encouraged within this zone, administration believes that adjoining existing and future residents may be affected due to the early morning commencement of activities,’ the report said.

It also said the association had confirmed there would be no amplified call to prayer or any amplified songs or music conducted on the premises.

Administration has recommended the council approve the change of use, with conditions on operating hours and that only 20 people be on the premises at one time.

Responding to a question from councillor Frank Cvitan on how the City would monitor the number of people, Mr Dickson said they would respond to complaints.

‘It would be a case of relying on people living nearby to inform us if there is a breach and then we would investigate,’ he said.