Preschool to expand on reserve
Pukerua Bay Preschool can proceed with its building extension after the city council approved a partial reclassification of Raroa Reserve.
Porirua City Council voted unanimously last Thursday to change 1500 square metres of Raroa Reserve from scenic reserve to local purpose reserve.
The preschool, run by Wellington Free Kindergarten, plans to extend the building at 8 Wairaka Rd on to reserve land so it can cater for 30 children, up from its present capacity of 13.
The plan met with opposition from the local community, with six submissions to the council against the plan, and one expressing neutrality.
Community concerns were addressed in a report prepared for councillors by council resource planner Katie Brown.
The preschool was unable to continue operating in Pukerua Bay without increasing its roll, Ms Brown said.
‘‘If its plans to extend are not approved, then the preschool will have to shut down.’’
The grassed area directly behind the current preschool building is already used by the community for recreation, so reclassifying the reserve legitimises its use, the report says.
Access to the reserve will not be affected by the extension.
Any increase in traffic and the environmental effects of the extension will be considered during the preschool’s resource consent process.