A primary school and a special school will be built side by side in Armstrong Creek as the State Government prepares for boom times in the burgeoning suburb.
Premier Denis Napthine visited the site at the Warralily Estate yesterday to announce the guaranteed $32 million investment with South Barwon MP Andrew Katos.
Moments earlier the Premier was at nearby Grovedale College, where he announced a $6.4 million election promise to help the school upgrade its facilities and prepare for the population influx from Armstrong Creek.
The Education Department has purchased 13ha of land at Warralily for the two schools, leaving it with enough room to also build a secondary school in the future.
The primary school will hold up to 500 students and the special school as many as 150 five-18 year olds.
They will be built with money from this year’s state budget as part of public/private partnership, with construction expected to start next year before an opening date in 2017 or 2018.
Building is expected to start next year before an opening date in 2017 or 2018.
Dr Napthine said the new schools were about planning for the future.
“This is an area that really will boom in the next few years. It will be the home of somewhere between 55,000 and 65,000 people,” he said.
“We, as a Government, have a responsibility to build the infrastructure as the community grows so the children will have great local schools.”
Warralily general manager of development Mark Whinfield said the estate was selling faster than any other area in Victoria, and confirmation of the schools would add further to its appeal.
“We are experiencing rapid growth with a current population of 2000 and 20 new families moving in every month,” Mr Whinfield said.
“Providing schools in walking distance from homes is an important part of our vision to create a vibrant, connected and sustainable community.”
Building companies will vie to construct the two schools and the 11 other new schools across the state.
Other schools include a Torquay North primary school, a special development school in Hamlyn Heights and a primary school in Bannockburn.
Expressions to design and build all 13 schools will open this month, with the tenderer given a 25-year contract to maintain the property.
Mr Katos — who, with his family, moved into a new home at Warralily last week — said the Government was preparing for population growth.
“I can see we need to do this. We don’t want examples … where the kids are here but there’s nowhere for them to go to school and they’re being bussed all over the place,” he said.
“We want people to be educated and have services available within their own local communities.”