2022 candidate for City of Onkaparinga.
Heritage survey responses.
Do you think that Councils and community members need to have a greater voice in planning and development decisions affecting their local area?
Absolutely. Successive State Governments have collaborated to progressively strip Local Government and community of voice and responsibility in local planning and development. The justification has laid in inconsistencies in planning decisions and at times lengthy approval processes. Whilst some of this is justified, it is a strength of local planning that it has local variance; it takes into account local community views expressed through direct community input and the broader representation of Elected Members on the Council Assessment Panel, which these days is in name only. From a Thalassa Ward perspective, residents are crystal clear they do not wish to have residential allotment sizes reduced with multiple dwellings replacing family homes with room families to grow and the amenity of their neighborhoods retained. There may be appropriate tinkering around the edges through a robust local process but this has not and will not be possible under the State control.
What role should Councils play in protecting local heritage places from demolition or inappropriate development?
Again, providing development responsibility is shifted back to Local Government Councils may play a significant role in protection and development assessment of heritage places. I believe this to be a collaborative opportunity with Heritage Groups (all levels) the broader community, neighboring ratepayers Council and State Government. Currently Councils have an advocacy role which is used with varying degrees of vigor depending on the Council. My view is Councils should be loud in this space. It is also worth underscoring "places" as needing heritage protection. This is wide ranging and includes places of Aboriginal cultural significance and environmental significance.
How would you seek to improve protections for heritage places in your area?
Through strong advocacy. Celebrating our heritage places, activation and community use as appropriate. Provision of grant opportunity to support maintenance and retention. Raising awareness in community through Heritage trails and events, making heritage more top of mind in community and creating connection to place. Such endeavors will make planners and developers less eager to pursue if such places as considered valuable to community.
We rarely see new places added to local heritage listings. Why do you think this is?
Two reasons which come to mind are owners fearful of reducing the marketability of their property if it had a heritage listing (where it could be celebrated and increase value). Also there is less heritage stock these days as much has fallen to the developers wrecking ball.
How has the Planning and Design Code impacted on the heritage, amenity, and environment of your area? What changes would you seek to the Code?
Restoring planning to local government. Increasing heritage place protection Increasing environmental protection.
What are the impacts of infill development in your area? What changes would you seek in the rules around infill development?
Housing insecurity and homelessness is one of the biggest challenges our Nation faces. Rather than rules I would offer a vision; At the local level, in Onkaparinga, SA's largest LGA, we have the greenfield sites to take a fresh approach and support a new earer of affordable housing, which, with careful consideration, may be of innovative construction to reduce cost whilst being environmentally sustainable, and energy efficient. Such dwellings would be on smaller sites than in established suburbs but planned to retain quality of life for new residents. Planning to include substantial tree plantings, parks and biodiversity. also access to public transport and a walkable/rideable space.
Construction of new housing typically uses 30% labour and 70% materials. Renovation of existing housing stock typically uses 70% labour and 30% materials. What policy changes would you like to see made to encourage people to renovate, rather than demolish and build anew?
Education is probably the most powerful tool here. the benefits are clear but not widely known. Also supporting grass roots practical community education; eg classes for the home renovator community centres.
How should the community be informed and involved in decisions about new developments?
Depending on the development in terms of breadth but via detailed community consultation. Communities should also have greater rights to object to developments.
Do you think there is adequate tree canopy across your local government area?
NO. Onkaparinga has 25% canopy however very low rates in new developments. Further, publications refer to urban green space which is deceiving as includes grassed areas which do nothing for addressing environmental sustainability.
How would you like to see significant and regulated trees in your area protected from removal?
With enforcement of current protections and those protections being increased to trees of lesser girth.
What involvement should Councils have in decisions about protecting or removing significant and regulated trees?
Councils do hold decision making responsibility in this space however may be overridden by the Council Assessment Panel.
What actions would you advocate to slow or mitigate the impacts of climate change in your local government area?
Declare a Climate Emergency to appropriately set the context. Broaden the current environment strategy to progressively embed "Environmental Responsibility" into all City activity. ie in much the same way as workplace health and safety is embedded into policy and procedure, satisfying sustainability criteria should also be embedded. Then planning a genuine Carbon Neutral Plan to 2030. Currently the City has a 80% reduction on 2010/11 levels. That's not carbon neutral. To do this I would focus on procurement which contributes up to 90% of Council emissions.
What issues are there with traffic and parking in your area?
Probably the biggest concern in Thalassa Ward is parking which may obstruct emergency vehicle access.
How could transport options be improved in your area?
Increasing availability of bus routes and frequency. Greater walk-ability through improvements and new pathways and increasing accessibility.
What would your top three priorities be for improving planning policy and outcomes in your local government area?
Lifting local community awareness to support advocacy on issues and drive change to bring planning back to local communities.
Increasing support for affordable and sustainable housing.