Community concern over plans to develop a huge 120 place child care centre near Reads Road has resulted in over 70 objections opposing the development and its gathering momentum.
And Gosford City Council staff appear to have already endorsed the proposed development in a private meeting on 23 May 2013 prior to the Development Application being lodged!
Documents report Council as stating the development “…represented an appropriate use of the property due to location and other site characteristics” and that it “…would assist in meeting a demand for child care centre places in the area”.
This is despite the very high levels of service provided by at least 14 quality child care centres within a short distance of the site and virtually all these centres have vacancies.
Statements such as these combined with Council’s continued efforts to thwart objections and protest seriously undermine the community’s view that Council is capable of making an impartial and rational assessment of this proposal.
In summary, this development should be refused due to:
- The location and design creates significant safety and traffic hazards that pose an unacceptable health and safety risk to children, parents, pedestrians and motorists.
- The lack of adequate, convenient and safe parking for residents, staff and visitors. The proposed underground parking is inadequate: the absence of onsite parking for staff and parents will create unacceptable impacts on residents, motorists and pedestrians and random street parking will dominate the semi rural streetscape.
- Incompatibility with neighbouring land uses: the proposal does not integrate into the existing residential environment and is unnecessarily obtrusive in terms of size, bulk, height and the amount of landscaped area provided.
- Child care centres are not permitted at this site because it is contrary to Council’s Development Control Plan 117. Section 7.4.3 states that a childcare centre should not be located in a cul-de-sac, opposite an intersection or on any other road (such as a classified “State Highway” with over 22,000 cars each day) where additional vehicles may create traffic conflict or adverse impact on the amenity of the area. The location does not comply with any of these requirements.
- Bushfire risks.
- The amenity of adjoining neighbours is significantly compromised.
- The detrimental affects on neighbouring residents from industrial level noise emissions from
- The absence of commercial demand for this type of facility.
- The precedence it creates in over-development of land zoned for environmental and scenic protection.
- The location of such a large facility in a “neighbourhood” is contrary to the objectives of the Central Coast Regional Strategy. Compounding this incompatibility is the excessive distance from large demand sources for child care services such as a “Regional city” (Gosford); “Major centre” (Tuggerah-Wyong); “Employment lands” (Somersby Industrial Park, West Gosford, Lisarow, Berkeley Vale and Wyong North); “Town centres” (Bateau Bay, The Entrance, Erina, Lake Haven, Toukley, Warnervale and Woy Woy); or “Villages“ (Avoca Beach, Budgewoi, Chittaway Bay, East Gosford, Ettalong, Killarney Vale, Kincumber, Lake Munmorah, Lisarow, Long Jetty, Niagara Park, Ourimbah, Terrigal, Umina Beach, Wadalba, West Gosford and Wyoming).
- The economic impacts on businesses and the community from this proposed development.
- Non-compliance of the proposed development with Development Control Plan (DCP) No. 159.
- Land and Environment Court Principles concerning amendments to set backs.
- Land and Environment Court Decisions concerning the responsibility of Council’s to refuse developments that are incompatible with area character statements.
- The proposed development would not be permitted under the draft Local Environment Plan endorsed by Council. Council is obligated by the Land and Environment Court to to give full consideration to the drat LEP in its assessment as per Stockland Development Pty Ltd v Manly Council  NSWLEC 472.
Now Council are making it very difficult to lodge submissions.
Send your objections to the General Manager, Gosford City Council (but do not use original signatures or information you do not want the public (or criminals) to know such as mobile phone numbers etc as Council act very irresponsibly in publishing them) by:
- Email to: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
- Post to P.O. Box 21 Gosford NSW 2250 or 49 Mann Street Gosford NSW 2250
- Fax to 4323 2477
Alternatively you can try to open this link to their DA submissions page and scroll down all the Development applications until your find “Reads Group” and select ‘Comment”. Its is not easy and does not meet the required web standards for accessibility. But since when has Council cared about making their website usable and accessible?
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