Childcare development along major truck route approved by Maribyrnong Council
A childcare development, co-owned and operated by a school principal and located along a major truck route, has been approved by Maribyrnong Council, in a bid to address “a gaping hole in childcare services” in Maribyrnong city, The Herald Sun has reported.
The development, to be located in Kingsville, an inner western suburb of Melbourne, Victoria, will be located at 248-252 Somerville Rd, educating and caring for 90 children each day. The Sun reports that the centre will be co-owned and operated by school principal Alison Cowdrey, who spoke at the council’s development meeting on Tuesday night.
Because of the location of the centre, said to cost upwards of $2 million to construct, a self monitoring air quality indicator will need to be installed. This may be a temporary inclusion, The Sun noted, as the Victorian State Government will introduce a 24- hour truck ban along Somerville Rd from Geelong Rd to Whitehall St when the West Gate Tunnel opens in 2022 to ensure trucks use the freeway.
Other conditions imposed on the build include a minimum of eight bicycle spaces, no more than 90 children on the premises at one time, and trees of at least 2m must be planted.
Ms Cowdrey is said to have told the meeting she had lived experience of managing the challenge of securing childcare so that she could return to work following parental leave, and of having to use childcare options in Melbourne city, due to a lack of local options.
She cited extensive waiting periods for childcare in the area, extending up to 12 months in some cases. According to Ms Cowdry, the local area is undersupplied, with one childcare centre for every 11 children in the area.
Councillors thanked Ms Cowdrey for ensuring her proposal met with objections previously raised, and for playing a role in addressing the “desperate shortage” of childcare in the area.
To read the full coverage of this story, as created by The Herald Sun, please see here.