Decision delayed on South Hurstville childcare centre application before NSW Land and Environment Court

DA site: A DA has been lodged to knock down this home at 4 The Esplanade, South Hurstville and build a childcare centre. Picture: realestate.com.au
DA site: A DA has been lodged to knock down this home at 4 The Esplanade, South Hurstville and build a childcare centre. Picture: realestate.com.au

The fate of a development application to build a childcare centre in a quiet South Hurstville street is still not known.

The matter was heard in the NSW Land and Environment Court Land and Environment Court on May 24 but did not conclude and is now due to go back to the court on June 18.

A development application for demolition works and construction of a childcare centre at 4 The Esplanade, South Hurstville, was considered by Georges River Council's Local Planning Panel (LPP) on August 15, 2019.

The application sought to demolish existing structures and a tennis court and remove trees from the site to make way for a two-storey childcare centre with basement car park to provide care for 68 children and parking for 18 vehicles.

According to the LPP minutes, panel members voted unanimously to refuse the application after they found the site was not suitable for the proposed development and would have an adverse impact.

"The proposed siting and design of the outdoor play structure and acoustic fence results in unnecessary visual bulk and scale, which results in an adverse impact to the built environment," the panel said.

"Additionally, inadequate setback and screen landscaping is proposed adjacent to the acoustic fence.

"The design and sitting of the proposal results in a built form which is incompatible with the immediate surrounding residential context.

"The proposal results in adverse built environment and social impacts and is therefore not considered to be in the public interest."

The applicant Ekon Pty Ltd appealed the decision in the Land and Environment Court of NSW.

Residents, including Carol Chilcott, have been fighting the development for four years and held an onsite protest the morning the matter was in court.

Ms Chilcott said it would ruin "the quiet peace of the neighbourhood" and cause property prices to plummet.