Two Canberra churches will be demolished to make way for childcare centres if a development proposal submitted to the ACT government is successful.
The Anglican Diocese of Canberra and Goulburn is exploring new uses for two sites it owns in Chapman and Deakin.
Under one development application, All Souls Anglican Church at 56 Perry Drive, Chapman would be demolished to make way for a 120-place childcare centre.
MORE PROPERTY NEWS:
The two-storey centre would feature large landscaped outdoor play area with a terrace on the upper level. A new access driveway and carpark with 19 parking spaces would also be added.
A second development application has been lodged or the former St Luke's Church site at 44 Newdegate Street, Deakin. The church opened in 1959, however it has not been used by congregation since 2016.
The development application proposes demolition of the existing church building to construct a 120-place childcare centre and two, double-storey dwellings to be used by Anglican church ministers or workers.
The plans include the removal of 14 regulated trees, which would be replaced with 15 new trees, as well as driveway access from Newdegate Street with 23 parking spaces.
Both applications require a Crown lease variation to be used as a childcare centre.
If the plans are approved, construction is expected to commence around March 2022, with the centre opening dates anticipated for January 2023.
Deakin Residents Association president John Bell said the diocese has consulted the community over several years on plans for the Deakin site. In 2017, the diocese proposed plans to build eight supportive townhouses on the land.
"We had some reservations about aspects of that proposal and they came back to us this year with the early learning centre proposal," Mr Bell said.
He said while the centre looks well-designed, he questioned whether the proposed 23 off-street carparks were sufficient.
"The problem is that it's going to have quite a number of staff and then it's going to have parents dropping off their children, so we've told the consultants that we thought the provision of off-street parking was not really enough," Mr Bell said.
"All that said, there is quite a demand in this area [for childcare] and I think that it will fulfill a need."
Commercial real estate agency Colliers has been engaged to manage the designs and timelines of the projects.
Colliers national director Iain Davidson said the centre has been designed to minimise any potential disruption to the surrounding residential streets.
"The focus has been around creating a through road .. that means all parents will drive in and drop off inside that zone so there's not the usual busy periods inside a suburban street," he said.
Mr Davidson said the two childcare centres would provide a pathway into Canberra's Anglican schools.
"If approved, the early learning centres will not only be centres of excellence in early childhood education, they will provide the ACT with an additional 240 vital early education places, which will help meet demand as our population continues to grow," he said.
Both applications are open for community feedback until December 10.
The Anglican Diocese of Canberra and Goulburn did not respond to interview requests for this story.
Our journalists work hard to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. This is how you can continue to access our trusted content: