Metro North-West DAP approves Clarkson BP fuel station plans

Peter Ibrahim, Karsten Winter, Nagy Ibrahim and Raquel Mendes near proposed fuel station site near their homes. Photo: Martin Kennealey
Peter Ibrahim, Karsten Winter, Nagy Ibrahim and Raquel Mendes near proposed fuel station site near their homes. Photo: Martin Kennealey

CLARKSON residents have voiced frustration over a decision to grant approval for a 24-hour BP fuel station and convenience store opposite their homes.

The Metro North-West Development Assessment Panel approved the $3.5 million development on the corner of Neerabup Road and Maroochydore Way yesterday.

Although City of Wanneroo staff recommended restricting operating hours to between 6am and 10pm, the panel approved 24-hour operation and restricted tanker refuelling to between 6am and 10pm.

Acting presiding member Sheryl Chaffer cast the deciding vote on the operating hours amendment after it was split two for and two against as the fifth panel member was an apology.

Resident Nagy Ibrahim said the decision meant he would have to move away from the home he’s been in for five years because of the impact on his asthma.

“When I smell any petrol, I’m continuously coughing,” he said.

Mr Ibrahim said to avoid triggering his asthma, his son usually refuelled his car and his doctor advised he should not be exposed to petrol fumes.

“With the sea breeze coming from the west, it’s a reality that we – being on the east of the proposed development – would be directly exposed to the car fumes and petrol vapours,” he said.

His nephew Youssef Takla said the location of the access crossover could create traffic issues on both Maroochydore Way and Neerabup Road.

“It will take seven cars lining up to get fuel to actually back up the traffic,” he said.

“It creates a dangerous scenario.”

Resident Karsten Winter said the volume of traffic on Maroochydore Way would double because that would be the only access to the fuel station.

During a presentation at the meeting, he raised concerns about the turning circle space for fuel tankers leaving the site but a representative for BP said a computer simulation indicated it would be sufficient.

Resident Raquel Mendes said it did not feel like residents’ voices were heard and she had already received a letter dated September 14 from a building company advising that it would start sewer connection works for the site on October 1.

Ms Mendes said the decision to allow a 24-hour operation seemed arbitrary and there were better locations for a fuel station than opposite homes.

“They can build a petrol station in any place, including where the old Bunnings is,” she said.

Planning Solutions submitted the application for the 8235sq m site, which BP is in the process of subdividing.

Associate Scott Vincent said the convenience store was a permitted use on the business-zoned block.

Mr Vincent said the WA Planning Commission approved subdivision of the block into three lots, and there was a restrictive covenant on it that prevented vehicle access from Neerabup Road.

Discussion during the meeting also focused on the impact of headlights spilling into homes opposite the fuel station access and the height of a sign, which was approved at 6m rather than the 8m requested by BP.

During public consultation, the City received 10 submissions with most objecting and one supporting the development as it would be convenient to access.

Dr Winter said residents were also concerned about how it would affect the value of their properties.