Sunvale Primary School: Hope alive for ‘whole hog’ outcome

Sunshine residents have campaigned for a decade for the former Sunvale Primary School site to be a community park.

A final decision on the future of land at the former Sunvale Primary School is imminent.

Sunshine being formerly recognised as a centre for growth has underpinned Brimbank council’s $3 million purchase of the western half of the former Sunvale Primary School site.

However the remaining 9300 square metres eastern section is zoned Residential.

Planning Minister Matthew Guy told The Weekly a decision by the Department of Education was coming soon.

“Not sure of sale value (of the eastern section) but we are pleased to see the Council making a commitment to buy part of the site,” he said.

“The final decision is still not determined but we do not expect it to take much longer.”

To be paid over the current and next two financial years, council wants the 1.1-hectare section for public open space and recreation.

A council report found Sunvale was the ideal location for creating more green space.

“The former Sunvale site provides a rare opportunity to retain public land for community use,” it read.

“Additional residential development is proposed in the area… Sunshine has also been recognised as a Metropolitan Activity Centre in the State Government’s metropolitan strategy, Plan Melbourne. These changes bring on the need for the provision of quality public open space in the area.”

The exact configuration of the park and facilities will be determined after community consultation.

Western Metropolitan MP Bernie Finn said he was still hopeful the entire site would be turned into a park.

“That’s what I’m fighting for, we can go the whole hog, which has been my aim since day one,” he said.

He said the only stumbling block was the treasury department and that the government could make a lot more money selling the land to private developers.

“I have no feeling either way (which way the government will decide), but I’m an optimist by nature. If we pitch in and present the case to the right people hopefully we will prevail.”

Save Sunvale campaigner John Hedditch said it was good news but still wanted to see the entire site used for a community park.