Girrawheen school a step closer to expansion

Emmanuel Christian Community School plans to expand facilities across Salcott Road. d492210
Emmanuel Christian Community School plans to expand facilities across Salcott Road. d492210

A GIRRAWHEEN school is a step closer to expanding following approval of a planning scheme change.

Emmanuel Christian Community School principal Gary Harris said Wanneroo Council’s support to rezone two Salcott Road residential properties to private clubs and recreation would help its bid to improve facilities.

Mr Harris said the campus had students in Years 7 to 11, who were generally from low socio-economic areas and diverse cultural backgrounds.

As part of its effort to improve educational opportunities for those students, the school plans to redevelop the existing classrooms and build a double-storey teaching block, basing students in the nearby properties during construction.

“We look forward to using the land across the road in a positive way for our students,” Mr Harris said.

Wanneroo Council supported the planning scheme amendment, lodged by Burgess Design Group on the school’s behalf, at its July 30 meeting, and it will also be considered by the WA Planning Commission.

The existing classrooms on Salcott Road will be replaced with a two-storey classroom block.

The school’s Salcott Road campus had 170 students in years 7 to 11 and it intended to expand to Year 12, with student numbers ultimately going up to 338.

During public consultation, the City received four submissions with two objecting to the rezoning amid concerns about increased demand for parking and more traffic.

“The existing car parking facilities are sufficient to accommodate 338 high school students,” a council report said.

“The City has previously received complaints regarding verge parking adjacent to the Salcott Road campus.

“Upon investigation by the City’s rangers, it was determined that the verge parking was not unlawful.”

The report said an increase in student numbers was likely to result in an extra 36 vehicle movements in peak morning and afternoon periods, which would not exceed traffic capacity for Hainsworth Avenue or Salcott Road.

“The applicant has demonstrated that the proposal will not create a safety and amenity issue in regards to the car parking and traffic concerns raised by submitters,” it said.