School slams asphalt plan

Callum HunterSouth Western Times
BCGS Head of School Michael Giles.
Camera IconBCGS Head of School Michael Giles. Credit: South Western Times, Callum Hunter

Bunbury Cathedral Grammar School executives have weighed in on the proposed asphalt plant in Gelorup after the Capel Shire Council released the development application for public comment.

Head of School Michael Giles issued a letter to parents last week outlining the school’s stance and encouraged the school community to make their own submissions.

Mr Giles said in the letter the school would object to the proposal on the grounds of its proximity (1km) to the campus and the potential impacts it would have on students’ learning and development.

“The 90 boarders and boarding staff families who live just to the west of the planned site may be exposed to emissions and discharges from asphalt manufacturing, including noise, dust, odours and contaminated storm water,” he said.

“Under the Environmental Protection Act 1986 a school qualifies as sensitive land use.

“Clearly, this recognises that there is nothing more important than the healthy development of young minds and bodies.”

Mr Giles also cited the risk the plant would pose to the various endangered species living within the bushland on the grounds of the school.

“Nearby residents and all parents who contacted the school have supported our intention to bring this issue to our community’s attention and oppose the application,” he said.

According to Capel shire chief executive Ian McCabe, about 70 submissions have been made to the council since the application was made public on August 26, but he declined to comment on the nature of those submissions.

A decision on the development application is expected to be made at either the November or December ordinary council meeting.

“September 19 is the formal date for acceptance of submissions but officers will accept late submissions that are not unduly late,” Mr McCabe said.

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