Toowoomba private school plans to demolish house
A TOOWOOMBA private school has lodged plans with the council to demolish a run-down property that it recently acquired.
Top girls boarding school St Ursula’s College submitted the proposal to the Toowoomba Regional Council late last week to remove the house at 107 West St in Newtown.
The Corporation of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Toowoomba bought the property in January 2019 for $330,000.
According to the planning report by Precinct Urban Planning, demolition was considered the best option based on a report on the state of the house by Kehoe Myers Consulting Engineers.
“The existing residential unit building is in a poor state of repair following an extended period of limited maintenance and is now considered to be structurally unsound and not economically viable to restore,” the report said.
“The report demonstrates there is extensive movement in the brick foundations and degradation of the timber framing (including dry rot) and roof sheeting with cracking and degradation of the asbestos cement external wall cladding and internal walls.
“Of important note was the processes involved in removal of the degraded asbestos cement sheeting and its replacement with safer types of buildings materials that would otherwise affect any existing character elements of the building.
“In addition, there will be substantial costs in meeting current fire-rating requirements if the building was to be restored as a multiple dwelling complex.”
The report also said the school had yet to incorporate a use for the land in its current master plan.
The application comes nearly two years after the school bought the neighbouring West Toowoomba Bowls Club for $1.8 million in July 2018.
It means the school now owns several immediate consecutive lots around the original campus, laying the foundation for a possible expansion.
The property is listed in a neighbourhood character overlay, warranting an application from the school.
Article originally published in The Chronicle.