Fuel stop proposal worries couple

Fuel stop proposal worries couple

Stuart and Margaret Fisher fear their backyard will be overshadowed by a proposed service station behind their back fence. Photograph — Matt Devlin.

A Maddington family are fuming after a proposal to build a 24-hour service station with bowsers just five metres from the boundary was lodged with the City of Gosnells.

Margaret and Stuart Fisher moved into their Cowan Street home in 1986 when the site behind them was a house fronting Albany Highway.

The house has since been demolished and commercial buildings have sprung up either side of the now empty site.

Last month the Fishers received a notice informing them of a proposal to construct a 185-square metre 7-Eleven convenience store with three  bowsers, which would operate 24-hours a day, seven days a week.

It would havee 13 car parking bays including six bays as part of the fuel service area.
The canopy to the fuel bowsers was proposed to be setback about 4.375-metres to the rear boundary with vehicle access proposed to be setback one metre from the back fence and a loading bay for delivery vehicles along the rear boundary.

Mrs Fisher was particularly concerned about the smell of fumes and other safety issues associated with being so close to a service station.

She recalled the explosion of a petrol tanker and destruction of the Woolworths petrol station nearby in Burslem Drive in May, 2009 and was filled with ‘dread’ by the proposed development just 20-metres from her bedroom window.

Mrs Fisher was also concerned about the lights coming from signage and the constant noise of cars and people.

While she and her husband did not intend to move she feared the proposal could negatively affect the worth of their home.

“This is all we’ve got and we intend to be carried out of here feet first but if we get sick and have to go into care the sale of this house would fund it and when we go it’s meant to go to our children,” she said.

“We have permission to subdivide the land but we won’t be able to sell if there’s a service station right there.”

Mrs Fisher acknowledged the land along that stretch of Albany Highway was already being used for commercial purposes but said existing developments such as those either side of the site hadn’t caused a problem because they kept normal business hours and didn’t produce excessive noise or smells.

She said parking for those businesses was also positioned closer to Albany Highway, reducing the amount of noise coming into their home.

City of Gosnells chief executive Ian Cowie said the application was still in the process of being assessed but it was anticipated it would be presented to the council for determination in either late August or early September.

He said the site was designated Mixed Business under the Central Maddington Outline Development Plan and as a convenience store it would require planning approval before going ahead.

He said the city requires commercial developments be screened from any abutting residential developments by a masonry or similarly constructed wall or fence not less than two metres high and by trees and shrubs to the satisfaction of council.