A MOSQUE will not be built in Cockburn, after councillors unanimously refused to grant planning approval for a proposed bush lot on the corner or Lorimer and Russell roads in Munster.
More than 60 residents packed the council chambers for Thursday night’s council meeting, with chairs spilling out into the foyer and residents clamouring for an opportunity to speak during public question time.
The proposal by the Southern Metropolitan Muslim Association to build a Masjid, or multipurpose Islamic cultural centre on the 1.23 ha rural block, was quashed by City officers in the meeting agenda on the grounds of environmental impact, no potable water supply, traffic issues, noise, detraction from visual amenity and a land use inconsistent with a rural area.
The proposal also failed to gain the support of the Department of Health due to its non-compliance with the State’s sewerage policy.
Officers also took 424 public submissions into account and although 298 were in support of the proposal, 233 of those were from residents outside the Cockburn area, which the officers deemed as “important”.
Of the 168 submissions from Cockburn residents, 114 objected to the proposal with 23 objections and two supportive submissions from residents within 300 metres of the proposed site.
The officers’ report stated that despite the appearance of a genuine need for a mosque in the south-west metropolitan area, the overwhelming concerns of nearby residents, coupled with a proposal inconsistent with the earmarked block’s amenity, meant the City council’s support for it could not be granted.