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Byron Shire
June 2, 2023

Private school for Pottsville

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Chris Dobney

Pottsville residents may still be waiting for the state to approve a high school in the town but parents now have a choice of primary school for their children after the Northern Joint Regional Planning Panel approved the construction of a Catholic primary school late Tuesday.

The approved development application allows for the construction of St Ambrose Primary School, catering initially for about 200 students, subject to conditions to do with construction, noise and traffic.

Panel chairman Gary West told Echonetdaily some of the conditions related to the construction of a new road to provide access to the school.

‘Specifically with Charles Street – currently being a “paper road” – to be opened as a public road carrying traffic to and from the school, the conditions relate to its development together with proper footpaths and cycleways.

‘Also there are conditions to do with noise related to the multi-purpose hall. Of course you can’t quieten children in a schoolground.’

Tuesday’s panel meeting heard resident objections relating to noise, especially from the proposed bell tower.

Consent was granted for a staged development of the site.

Stage 1 includes five buildings (consisting of seven classrooms, a multipurpose hall, a library, a canteen, amenities and staff facilities) connected by covered walkways; an entry forecourt and bell tower, car parking and set-down areas, a covered outdoor learning area, outdoor rooms and garden areas and field and courtyard playing areas.

Stage 2 will see the construction of an additional building, including three classrooms and amenities, and an outdoor room and covered walkways.

Stage 3 includes some extensions to the earlier buildings and the construction of another building to hold four classrooms, additional covered outdoor areas and walkways.

Mr West said, ‘The proposed primary school will have a positive social and economic impact through the use of existing urban-zoned land to accommodate an essential community service’.

The development application was referred to the regional panels because the capital investment value of the proposed development exceeds $5 million and is an educational establishment.

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