Proposed Boundary Expansion for Fraser Primary School

The Education Directorate is proposing to expand the Fraser Primary School site boundary to provide more outdoor space for student learning and play.

We are seeking feedback from the local community as part of this process which requires variation to the Territory Plan.

The proposed expansion is to the north-east of the existing school to include additional land close to Tillyard Drive.

What is proposed?

An area of land to the northeast of the school is proposed to be re-zoned from open space to community facility land to increase the existing school site by about 1.4 hectares providing additional outdoor space for student learning and play. The proposed new school area is shown on the map below.

This is a growing community, and a growing school. While there hasn’t been a Government decision for a permanent expansion of the school at this stage, we know the school will need more space in the medium term. Doing a Territory Plan Variation is the first step in this process, and will give us the flexibility we need to meet the needs of the school community over the coming years. The Government will continue to monitor current and forecast enrolment demand at this school and for the Belconnen region in the future.

Fraser Primary School Proposed Expansion

Why is this proposed?

Fraser Primary School is a thriving ACT public school supporting the community of northwest Belconnen. The school has seen enrolment grow in recent years and now has almost 600 students enrolled from Preschool to Year 6. The school’s Priority Enrolment Area (PEA) includes Fraser and parts of Charnwood, Dunlop and Flynn.

School facilities have been expanded over a number of years with the installation of transportable classrooms to accommodate student growth. These classrooms have been installed on outdoor space within the school grounds and reduced the outdoor play area.

The oval to the south of the school has been used for extra play space but involves students accessing it by crossing a public footpath and additional teacher supervision will be in place when this area is used to ensure student safety.

What is the current use of the land proposed for rezoning?

This land surrounding the school is currently managed by the ACT Government through Transport Canberra and City Services (TCCS) and under the Territory Plan is zoned as NUZ3: Hills, ridges and buffer areas. This open space runs alongside the school site and primarily contains cleared pasture and patches of native grasses.

A biodiversity assessment has identified that this part of the block contains ‘exotic dominated grassland’. A section of this block further north of the Fraser suburban area (about 500 metres away) is a declared nature reserve for the natural values contained in that area.

A small additional area of land along the northwest edge of the block is included in this proposed variation that will allow the block boundary of the school to be changed so that it aligns with the existing fence.

The area to the northwest of the school, between the school and Shakespeare Crescent contains scattered native tree plantings and is not proposed to be impacted. This area contains important habitat for native birds including sightings of Superb Parrot, which is a declared vulnerable species in the ACT.

What would be the result of the proposed changes to the Territory Plan? 

The Territory Plan is a statutory document that guides planning and development in the ACT. It is administered by the Environment, Planning and Sustainable Development Directorate and available at

A variation to the Territory Plan is being proposed that would formally:

  • Rezone a portion of Block 6, Section 64, Fraser from NUZ3: Hills, Ridges and Buffer Zone to CFZ: Community Facility Zone
  • Amend the Fraser Precinct Code – Fraser Precinct Map by extending the PD1 map area to include the subject land. No changes to the prohibited uses listed at Table 1 are proposed.

If approved, custodianship of the land affected by the variation would also be transferred from TCCS to the Education Directorate and incorporated into the Fraser Primary School site.

Fraser Primary School Proposed Expansion TPV

How has the Education Directorate approached this? 

The provision of land for community facilities including schools within the ACT is a strategic priority for the ACT Government. The Education Directorate identifies this in the Future of Education Strategy (2018) and Strategic Plan 2018-2021 available at These documents outline the Government’s education strategy for 2018 to 2028 and the Directorate’s strategic framework in key areas.

The Strategy establishes a policy direction that informs a range of future initiatives and projects. The Strategy has a principle of access: “Supports for learning and wellbeing are available and provided to all students.” The Plan includes a number of strategic goals, including ensuring schools are where students enjoy and thrive in learning.

The area identified under this proposal for an expansion of the land available for students at Fraser Primary School will support the Government’s and Directorate’s strategic objectives, including meeting population and public school enrolment growth through providing ACT public education facilities and access to open space and play areas.

What is the long term plans for the additional land? 

No new buildings or facilities are proposed as part of this rezoning process and this proposal is for a permanent expansion of the land area only.

The Directorate monitors and plans for population and public school enrolment growth for all regions of the ACT, including developing areas such as Belconnen, and will continue to monitor the public education needs of the Fraser Primary school community in the future.

How can I have my say?

The Education Directorate (together with WSP Australia) held preliminary community consultation in September and October 2022 to seek feedback from the community. All feedback received during this engagement has been considered by the project team and collated in a package including a Planning Report supporting the proposed Territory Plan Variation, to be lodged with the Environment, Planning and Sustainable Development Directorate (EPSDD) in December 2022.

It is expected EPSDD will consider the proposal and undertake formal consultation on a Draft Variation to the Territory Plan- in 2023, in line with statutory obligations which include making information about the proposal available as well as an opportunity for consultation with the community.

Summary of issues raised during September – October 2022 community consultation and responses

Is a Traffic management plan part of the proposal and will there be impacts on local traffic management?

No additional traffic is expected to be generated by this proposal because the proposal does not impact school enrolments. This proposal is only to expand the land area of the school grounds for students to access additional outdoor space.

Will there be any work to address parking and traffic congestion impacts during pickup and drop off times at the school?

The Education Directorate will continue to work closely with Transport Canberra and City Services (TCCS) to plan for and manage traffic impacts in the local area, particularly around peak periods during pick up and drop off times, independently from this proposed Territory Plan Variation.

Are other land uses such as temporary or permanent infrastructure planned for this area?

No new buildings or facilities, either temporary or permanent are proposed as part of this rezoning process. This proposal is for a permanent expansion of the land area only.

If the TPV is approved, will there be a fence around the school?

No decisions have been made regarding the TPV proposal outcome. If a TPV goes ahead, the school Principal (together with the Education Directorate) will work with the school community to consider whether a fence is required in this area. This decision would be based on safety and operational impacts and would also consider impacts for the local community through consultation with nearby residents.

Will the community still be able to access this area if the TPV is approved?

If the TPV goes ahead, the land would become Community Facility Zone and be part of the school, so access to this area during school hours would not be available to the general public. Schools also work closely with their local communities to provide access to facilities, outside of school hours, where possible. For schools with security fencing this means making arrangements with the community for appropriate outside school hours access, in accordance with the Education Directorate Community Use of School Facilities Policy available at

Why has this particular area been identified instead of other green spaces nearby?

The community oval to the south of the school is an important and established community asset that serves the entire suburb of Fraser for sport and recreation use. At times it has been used by the school although it involves students accessing it by crossing a public footpath and requires additional supervision requirements when this area is used by the school, to ensure student safety.

A public footpath between the school and the oval is an important community link connecting to the underpass of Tillyard Drive. It is undesirable to have this path through the school site, or to remove the path connection to accommodate an increased school site.

The area to the northeast of the school is well located for students to play outdoors in close proximity to their school. On balance, access to this particular site has been identified by the Directorate to be in the best interests of the Fraser Primary School community (as well as the interests of the broader Fraser community, by also continuing to preserve established open space/playing fields at the community oval nearby.

Noting the boundary of the proposed site expansion is nearby to local residences, is a 35-meter buffer between the boundary and the residential premises sufficient?

Under this proposal, the 35m buffer retains the existing stand of trees and is considered reasonable to provide a sufficient noise and distance barrier and also meets the requirement for a minimum setback of 6 metres under the Territory Plan.

What are the next steps?

Feedback received during the preliminary community consultation has been collated, together with a Planning Report supporting the proposed Territory Plan Variation, and lodged with the Environment, Planning and Sustainable Development Directorate (EPSDD) by the Education Directorate in December 2022.

EPSDD will  consider the proposal and undertake a formal community consultation on a draft Variation to the Territory Plan in 2023, including making these reports available and consulting other ACT Government Directorates agencies for comment.