Mannum Road childcare centre approved despite locals’ traffic concerns
The Murray Bridge council has approved plans for an Eden Academy on the corner of Mannum Road and Florence Street.
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A developer has won approval to build a 118-place childcare centre on Mannum Road, Murray Bridge, but not everybody is happy about it.
The area around St Joseph’s School was already “dangerous” and “chaotic” at drop-off and pick-up times, residents warned ahead of an assessment panel meeting on Friday.
Wouldn’t a childcare centre across the street make things worse?
Maybe, panel member Myles Somers said – but that was the council’s problem to solve.
“With the district growing in population, and earmarked for 30,000 in 10 years … that’s going to be a lot of children going to school and going to childcare,” he said.
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“Council will have to bring its mind to traffic congestion … (and) safety.
“I think there are things that council can do in terms of looking at the movements of people and vehicles and seeing whether things can be done.”
Panel member Marc Voortman agreed, describing the traffic problem as a “network issue” that was not the developer’s responsibility.
Members of the public also objected to the fact that two towering Norfolk Island pine trees on the corner of Florence Street would be removed to make way for the development.
Resident Craig Allen said it would be “almost criminal” to chop them down.
However, council staff advised that the pines were not native to the area, and nor were they listed on any register of protected trees – Murray Bridge did not have one.
Planning consultant James Rhodes said the developers had tried to find a way to keep the trees, but wouldn’t have been able to fit the number of car parks required for the centre.
He noted that any existing trees on the footpath would remain, and that smaller native trees would be planted along the fence line.
The panel voted unanimously in favour of the childcare centre development.
When complete, it will be operated by national company Eden Academy.