Michael Sheely - 11 February 2014
Michael Sheely made the following comments in Non Agenda Public forum at the Ordinary Council Meeting on 11/02/2014.
Thank you for allowing me to address the Council on an issue that is not on your agenda for this meeting as the applicant, St Peter's Anglican College Broulee, has requested that the matter be deferred for three months. I am speaking on behalf of a large number of residents who live in the northern part of Broulee.
The issue is an application lodged in December 2013 to gain 24 hour public access via a service entrance from Caitlin Crescent (DA M325/05).
Restricted access from Caitlin Crescent for teachers to park in the northern precincts of the College was incorporated within DA 325/05. This DA was for building of classrooms for the secondary College. Condition 12 stipulated that the gates were to be locked from 5pm each working day.
Since that time the College has failed on numerous occasions to adhere to these restrictions. It has allowed visitors, students and parents dropping off their children to use this entrance. In addition it has facilitated access for night-time and weekend activities. Various letters of complaint have been forwarded to Council as a consequence.
Concerns by Residents.
It is important that Council be aware that residents have significant concerns about the various developments of the College. There is an increasingly held view that Council has not ensured that the College gas adhered to the original development approvals for the College.
In particular I bring Council's attention to the Assessment of Traffic and Parking Implications report dated 06 June 2001 prepared by Project Planning Associates Pty Ltd for the original DA for the College. In essence, the report states that the proposed college will not have any unacceptable parking or servicing implications for residents of Broulee. The key assumptions underpinning this conclusion:
- The 161 car parking spaces contained within the proposal for the college is considered more than adequate to meeting the needs of the college with its predicted enrolment in the long term of 500-800 students;
- A perimeter service road will provide vehicular access throughout the site for service, maintenance and delivery vehicles;
- This service road would also provide access to carparks for overflow parking;
- An assessment was made on the effect that traffic demand generated by the development would have on the road network in the vicinity of the site;
- There was no proposal within the report for vehicular access to the college from any point other than off Train Street;
Page 10 of the report clearly states: "… the proposed College has good access to the 'higher order' classified RTA network of State and Regional Rods, and does not require the use of local residential streets to access the site". Page 15 further states "Vehicular access is also to be provided to other areas of the school on an informal basis or as part of the overflow parking arrangements,"
Detrimental impact on residents:
Development approvals since 2005 have had a detrimental impact on the amenity and traffic safety of many residents of northern Broulee.
Many people attending after-hours functions at the College (including weekends) have demonstrated a preference to access the College via Caitlin Crescent and not via the main entrance from Train Street.
Approval process for M325/05 (removal of condition 12)
Some residents were notified by the ESC Development Support Officer on 07 January 2024 the application by the College to allow 24 hour access via Caitlin Crescent. Submissions were required to be submitted by 29 January 2014.
It is our view that the timing of this notification placed residents at a significant disadvantage as it was in the holiday period and many residents were either away or attending to family matters.
In addition, for several months I had been attempting to obtain documents relating to DA 325/05 from ESC staff. Despite informal and then formal request under Information (Public Access) Act prior to 05 December 2014, these documents had not been made available by that date. These documents were subsequently made available after action by the Information and Privacy Commissioner.
Residents were subsequently led to believe that the application would be considered by Council at this meeting.
Liaison with College
I liaised directly with the new Principal of the College, Stephen Babbage, in January. As a consequence he contacted Council staff to have a decision on M325/05 deferred for three months.
I have been advised by the ESC Development Assessment Officer that 51 letters of objection have been submitted to Council regarding the application by the College.
To reiterate, significant and legitimate concerns have been raised by residents. Most believe that the college and Council have not appropriately considered the negative impact that developments within the College have had on residents. In particularly, Council has allowed a significant deviation from the traffic plan developed for the College in 2001.
Many residents are also concerned about the lack of detailed information being provided by Council staff and general communications surrounding the issue.
We are becoming increasingly more coordinated in our endeavours to ensure that any development applications by the College are appropriate and in accordance with the original plants for the College. We are concerned that the amenity and safety of our residential area will be further put at risk without concerted action by us.
A response from Council is not required.