28 June 2021

Wakefield Park deal ongoing as council defers decision

| Hannah Sparks
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Wakefield Park Raceway

Wakefield Park Raceway. Photo: James Coleman.

Goulburn Mulwaree Council has deferred making a decision on a development application for alterations and additions to Wakefield Park until 13 July.

The development proposal includes demolition of the existing pit lane building and associated structures, construction of a new pit lane building consisting of 14 additional garages and space for corporate functions as well as a medical centre and race control and commentary boxes.

Proponents would also like to construct a new off-road experience area, use part of the site for short-term camping in conjunction with events and hold general-purpose markets up to 12 times a year.

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Councillors were due to approve or refuse the application at an extraordinary meeting on Tuesday 22 June which ran until 11:55 pm as 17 speakers detailed concerns about the proposal.

Instead of taking the advice in the report presented to councillors to refuse the development application, the councillors agreed to postpone any decision until they had more information.

One of the main issues from residents has been noise and understanding what impact the development will have.

The council said it hadn’t received enough information from the popular raceway to quantify the noise impact.

“I’m not in favour of shutting Wakefield Park down, I think it’s a good facility, but it needs proper management,” said one speaker, Robert France.

“The type of noise we’re dealing with is classed by the EPA (NSW Environment Protection Authority) as ‘offensive’… Every three-decibel increase doubles the effect on a receiver… This is why the noise figures and the results of the noise monitoring are so critical in being able to assess the development application.

“Without those figures, there must be no further progress.”

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Council staff will now further investigate noise impacts, racing times and the economic value of the raceway to the region to present additional information to the councillors.

The councillors will make a decision at a meeting on 13 July. The meeting will be open to the public, however there won’t be a public forum.

Wakefield Park has been contacted for comment.

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