Planning decision on Swansea Muslim centre deferred for a third time
COUNCILLORS have again put-off voting on a planning application to allow a property in Hafod to be used for Muslim prayers.
The Hafod Muslim Welfare Association has applied for a change of use of the ground floor of 1 Odo Street to a mixed use of teaching the Qu'ran and a place of worship for all Muslim prayer sessions except for the Jumuah (Friday lunch prayers).
The application was previously deferred by the council's development control committee on June 18 to allow for a site visit and again on July 16 so that councilors could return to see inside the building. Now the committee has deferred again in order to determine the reason for the proposed opening hours — between 7am and 11pm — and to determine the exact number of people who would use the building.
A petition of objection containing 63 signatures has been submitted to the council.
The application has also attracted four letters of objection on the grounds of increased traffic and parking problems.
They have also questioned whether the current users were infringing existing restriction by not having sound proofing in place, not having fire precautions in place and not having enough toilet facilities.
The size of the building was also questioned with objectors claiming it is too small.
During yesterday's meeting at the Civic Centre Councillor Keith Marsh said: "I would like to offer 8am to 10pm, I feel that that is quite late enough. We have to bear in mind that this is a residential area."
Councillor Peter Black asked: "Is there a religious reason for the opening times?"
And Councillor Chris Holley said: "I'm at a loss to understand why highways said its not a problem when we all know the problems that we have outside schools."We are adding to the congestion, it's going to be very difficult."
Planning officers had recommended approval but it was deferred to ask the applicant the reason for the opening times and also to check the building's fire regulations as well as the ratio of adults to children.