Group unites voice against BP station

Taelor Pelusey and Jarrett VisherAugusta Margaret River Times
Daniel Kozyrski and fellow Cowaramup residents are rallying against plans for a 24-hour service station, which they say will threaten the town’s image and ambience.
Camera IconDaniel Kozyrski and fellow Cowaramup residents are rallying against plans for a 24-hour service station, which they say will threaten the town’s image and ambience. Credit: Augusta-Margaret River Times, Taelor Pelusey

Cowaramup business owners and residents aim to present a united front against plans to build a 24-hour BP service station and Wild Bean cafe just south of the town centre.

A group of residents are banding together against the development, slated for the corner of Roy Earl Drive and Bussell Highway and advertised by the Shire of Augusta-Margaret River for public comment last month.

Cowaramup resident Anne Parker is spearheading attempts to unite the town’s voice, having convened a meeting on Thursday night and written petitions.

In the lead-up to the meeting, held as the Times went to print, Mrs Parker said the community gathering aimed to consolidate concerns and brainstorm solutions, which would be rolled into an “action plan” and presented to the Shire.

“People can of course put in individual objections, but because Cow Town is such a strong community … in these situations that affect everyone, it’s important to come together,” she said.

“We want to collectively decide on a plan of action.”

Mrs Parker said petitions were circulating and, once completed, would accompany the action plan as part of the community’s submission to the Shire.

At a gathering on Tuesday, several residents and business owners voiced concerns to the Times about the development.

They said the development did not fit with Cowaramup’s “rural village feel”, lighting and noise from 24-hour operations could be problematic and its location could have environmental and health impacts.

Black Sheep Deli owner Daniel Kozyrski said there was a range of businesses needed in the town before a “green neon light saying BP and Wild Bean Cafe” was needed.

“I’m not anti-progress, but we need to provide growth that’s healthy,” he said.

Mrs Parker’s husband Kevin said the environment also deserved consideration, pointing to a nearby stream running parallel to the development.

A consultant’s report on the proposal for the 3500sqm block at the northern entrance to Roy Earl Drive details 12 car-refuelling bays and three bays for trucks, plus a 290sqm convenience store earmarked for a Wild Bean Cafe franchise.

Last month, Shire president Ian Earl, whose family previously owned the Cowaramup Country development, told the Times a service station was always proposed for the estate.

At least two residents have voiced support for the development on social media, welcoming job opportunities and 24-hour services. However, neither of them responded to the Times’ request for comment.

Submissions on the proposal will be received by the Shire until January 16.

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