Community feedback triggers development application review for Ipswich ECEC site
Strong community feedback has triggered a review of a development application for a new early childhood education and care (ECEC) service in Karalee, a rural residential suburb of Ipswich in Queensland.
An Independent Decision Review Panel (IDRP) will review the application, made by Griffith Group One Pty Ltd in March this year, which outlines a proposal to build a new ECEC service across the road from the Karalee State School, catering for 116 children and 20 staff.
In response to matters raised by Council, the applicant has since amended the proposal to reduce the capacity of the centre to 100 children and 17 staff, reduce the building size to one storey and increase on-site car parking.
Ipswich Mayor Teresa Harding said plans for the proposed centre have been referred to the independent panel after 280 properly made submissions were received from residents outlining concerns about the proposal.
The IDRP was established by the Council in 2019 to address sensitive development applications and review recommendations made by its planning officers in a bid to improve community participation and transparency in the decision-making process.
As part of the review process, a public hearing will be held with residents able to voice their concerns directly to the panel before it makes its recommendations ahead of a final decision by Council in November.
“This application is only the second to be referred to a public hearing under the IDRP process, which will be held in person and via livestream on 14 October,” the Mayor explained, encouraging anyone who has made a submission during the public notification period to address the panel directly with their views on the proposal.
The IDRP will be responsible for reviewing all relevant development application material including Council officers’ initial recommendations, prior to a decision being made by Council. Council has selected two experts who are independent, including a town planner and a traffic engineer, to chair the IDRP.
The public hearing will be recorded and live-streamed and will be available on Council’s Youtube channel to allow interested parties to view the proceedings.
More information regarding the IDRP can be found on the Ipswich Planning website, here.