Macarthur FC unveils its Cawdor football training facility plans

An artist's impression of the proposed Macrthur FV Football Training Facility at Cawdor. Picture: Camden Council website
An artist's impression of the proposed Macrthur FV Football Training Facility at Cawdor. Picture: Camden Council website

Macarthur FC has been kicking goals on the field, and now the A-League football team has a new goal in mind.

The Bulls have unveiled their plans for a purpose-built football training facility on a rural block of land along Cawdor Road, Cawdor.

The club announced last year that it had secured the 42-acre site which was expected to serve as a training base for the Bulls' future W-League side and National Premier League teams, as well as house the Macarthur FC Foundation.

Planning documents submitted to Camden Council state the proposed development will include four football training fields, a main facility building, a storage building, an amenities building, carparking, access roads, intersection upgrades, a playground, barbecue area and more.

"The main field it is located on the eastern side of the site and supported by the main building," the documents state.

"The topography presents the opportunity to provide a landscape terrace seating around the field that blends into the landscape slope and is provided with shade by mature trees.

"The main field is complemented by a warm up area between the car park and the main field.

"The design intent for these spaces is to flow as seamless as possible, avoiding physical barriers and making the players and the supporters to feel as they are in a park."

The facility is expected to set the club back more than $21 million.

The documents also state that there will be an outdoor meeting area to cate for "small public events" and a water spine.

"The Water Sensitive Urban Design strategy aims to utilise rainfall runoff to passive irrigate landscape zones and filter nutrients as the water permeates through the landscape areas," the documents state.

"The strategy seeks the landscape to change when there is a rainfall event by capture the water before letting it go to the planted areas."

However, the planning documents also acknowledge that the site is "affected by Nepean River flooding and local tributary flooding".

"The proposed development is not predicted to result in any measurable change in peak Nepean River ... AEP flood levels," flood impact documents concluded.

"The proposed development will not result in any change in the flood hazard classifications for offsite areas, including across adjoining properties.

"An evacuation route to higher ground at Camden, which is located above the PMF level, will remain accessible in all events up to and including the one in 500 AEP [annual exceedance probabilty] flood."

However, community campaigner Jo O'Brien said she had concerns about the proposal given the site's rural location on the floodplain.

"I do not believe that such a large facility can be built on the Cawdor Road site, even though the current proposal is only part of what was originally planned. It is still a major sporting facility," she said.

"There would be several sizeable buildings, the training facility alone is 100 metres long and half an acre/2000sqm in area.

"There are multiple planning restrictions, which is why this piece of land has remained rural and why not much has ever been built there."

Ms O'Brien said the land was zoned rural, for primary production, and was "severely flood prone".

"The rural floodplain around Camden is what has allowed it to remain a country town, and not be swallowed by surrounding suburbia. Allowing this construction could open up more of the floodplain for development," she said.

"It seems odd that the facility is being built on the part of the site that is more flood prone, while the least flood prone area of the site has been left vacant.

"It would make more sense for Macarthur FC to build a facility in the Greater Macarthur growth areas near their homeground (Campbelltown Stadium)."