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Building the Canning Vale Primary School

Rethink on powerlines at East Canning Vale Primary School 
(Story Courtesy of Canning Times)

20-26 November 2001
Story by Zoran Nedeljkovic

Public outrage over plans to put high-voltage overhead transmission lines close to the soon-to-be-opened East Canning Vale Primary School has forced Western Power to reconsider its position.

Last week, nearby residents to the school in Campbell Road and parents were shocked to discover that preparatory work had begun to re-route the powerlines away from a planned new housing estate near Dumbarton Road.

The new route would have included Campbell and Comrie roads around the school.

The New School, expected to open early next year, is just inside the City of Gosnells, but will have students from the City of Canning.

East Canning Vale Primary School P&C vice-president said there had been "absolutely no consultation" with the school community.

"The Department of Education has simply supported the re-routing with no consultation."

"We have always expressed concerns about the lines, even at their original route, but our concerns were disregarded," said the vice-president.

Nearby residents have also expressed concern about a devaluation in property values because of the possible health effects and aesthetic nature of the powerlines.

A Western Power spokesman said the proposed re-routing had originally been supported because it was in a road reserve and complied with technical, operational and safety requirements.

"But Western Power reviewed its position when it became obvious there was not majority support for the project," he said.  "Western Power was asked by the landowners (a property developer and the Education Department) to relocate the transmission line along Campbell and Cromrie roads around the school."

"It is their responsibility to obtain the approval of affected residents and stakeholders for these types of projects."

Unitl a suitable alternative route is found and it has community and stakeholder support, Western Power will not move the line."

However, Department of Education facilities director Stephen Harvey said the realignment  of the lines within the road reserves of the school was proposed by Western Power and the land developer.

"It is unfortunate that some people are creating panic in the community based on information not supported by available scientific research or evidence,"  Mr Harvey said.

"Regardless of this, the department has stopped work at the site to further consult with the community, Western Power and the land developer to address the concerns of the community."

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