2022 candidate for Adelaide City Council.
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?
Most definitely. In 2008, The State Government stripped the Adelaide City Council of its planning approval powers stating it was stymying development in the city, and reducing approval powers to be capped at $10million. Council and community members played an important role in making sure city development fitted into overall planning strategy and its vision for Adelaide as one of the most liveable cities in the world. Further, in 2013, the State Government took away the Statutory Consultation powers, saying this was delaying the process of development approvals. The referral role enabled the City through consultation with community member to provide important input and guidance to the State Development Assessment Commission around the fundamental management issues such as traffic, public transport, cyclist and pedestrian movement and waste management. Council has tried on several occasions to have its planning powers reinstated or at least increased to $40million as we believe that the council and our city community needs to be involved at the outset, to create cities for people. In April 2022, we initiated our Council's City Plan, the first masterplan in 30 years which will guide council's current n future plans including a focus on climate action, park lands management strategy, infrastructure and asset maintenance plans. It will provide a unique opportunity for community members to have their say on the planning and development of their city for the next 10-15 years.
What role should Councils play in protecting local heritage places from demolition or inappropriate development?
The City of Adelaide is dedicated to the conservation, protection and celebration of Adelaide’s renowned heritage and character for future generations to interpret and enjoy. Since 1988, the City of Adelaide has provided Australia’s most substantial local government heritage grant scheme; the Heritage Incentive Scheme. The scheme reimburses owners with part funding for documentation and conservation work of heritage and unlisted historic character places which meet specific criteria. Adelaide’s Heritage Incentive Scheme is widely regarded and has attracted much attention from interstate and overseas, something we are very proud of and humbled by. In November 2017, the Scheme won the Planning Institute of Australia SA award in the Best Planning Ideas – Large Project category. In May 2018, the Scheme was awarded a Commendation at the Planning Institute of Australia National Awards for Planning Excellence, held in Perth, Western Australia Since its inception, this multi-award-winning Scheme has provided over $22 million in grants to property owners In 2021, the City of Adelaide endorsed its new Heritage Strategy 2021-2036 and Action Plan with three pillars - to effectively preserve, to encourage best practice and ensure heritage is valued, and to celebrate and promote. The City of Adelaide’s consistent commitment to the conservation of heritage and unlisted historic character properties demonstrates the importance Council places on maintaining Adelaide's substantial heritage character. This significant injection of funding has had a dramatic impact on the character preservation of the city which ensures generations to come will enjoy our unique streetscapes and heritage architecture.
How would you seek to improve protections for heritage places in your area?
The City of Adelaide has worked very closely with the State Planning Commission's new planning and design code to ensure that the Adelaide and North Adelaide Historic Conservations Zones had adequate, if not grater protection under the 14 Heritage overlays. In 2022, Council unanimously approved to vigorously pursue further Local Heritage Listings in the city and North Adelaide. Stage one of assessment is now underway. Currently we have 2 national heritage places, 2 Commonwealth places, 649 State heritage listed places a and 1850 Local Heritage listed places in the city and North Adelaide. The greatest protection we can afford or beautiful heritage places is to wrk with owners to have them listed, assist with the preservation through our incentive scheme, and better promote their intrinsic value to our city. If re-elected as Lord Mayor I will work with my Council to better leverage our heritage assets, and further incentive protection and preservation by investigating a reduction in rates for those with maintain their listed properties.
We rarely see new places added to local heritage listings. Why do you think this is?
Often property owners believe that heritage listing will restrict what they are able to do to their property or that listing comes with onerous maintenance requirements. More education will assist owners to understand the value of listing and the incentives that they can access. In 2019, the City of Adelaide developed a new brand; Adelaide. Designed For Life. which is built upon our City’s foundational heritage. From the very beginning, South Australia’s capital city, Adelaide, was designed for living with the wellbeing of its people front of mind. The selection of the site for the new city was in recognition of the local Kaurna people’s relationship with this strategic site on the river, the geographical heart of Kaurna country, halfway between the hills and the ocean. Designed for Life speaks to the essence of the City of Adelaide’s past, present and future while embodying our city’s unique foundational history. Adelaide’s heritage is a fundamental component of the State’s unique culture and identity. The historic character of the past merges with the development and needs of the present and future, providing direct economic value when it comes to tourism.
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?
The City of Adelaide will advocate for further reform to the planning and design code based upon our position paper on heritage reform and our submission to the parliamentary enquiry into Heritage Reform. In essence we need to ensure that the code offers adequate protection of our city's historic places and areas. The heritage team are currently undertaking a review to remedy any gaps or vulnerabilities in the new framework. To date the Heritage overlay has been tested on two submissions for demolition and development. Council has staunchly defended the heritage places, directly and through the Assessment Panel processes.
What are the impacts of infill development in your area? What changes would you seek in the rules around infill development?
The City is not as impacted by infill as are the surrounding councils, however, we join our colleagues in the LGA to call for greater rues around climate ready and water sensitive design, to protect trees and demand further plantings, to provide for greater open green spaces.
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?
Re-adaptive re-use is high on our agenda. Council endorsed the Residential Housing and Growth Plan in May 2022, and seeks to investigate different adaptive building reuse options and remove red tape. The 'adaptive reuse trial' is to remove or address barriers for repurposing of old buildings.
How should the community be informed and involved in decisions about new developments?
The consultation process should allow community to express concerns, issues or opportunities there may be with new developments. We need to be able to engage and invite community feedback for consideration for all levels of development.
Do you think there is adequate tree canopy across your local government area?
No, we are sadly lacking. Adelaide City Council has the third lowest tree canopy cover of any Australian Capital City. We have worked collaboratively on heat mapping and canopy cover through LiDar analysis. We need to urgently increase our canopy across the city, North Adelaide and Park Lands for shade and shelter, for cooling and wellbeing. Of particular need and urgency is an increase in canopy in the South West and North West of the city, with both areas having less that 20% canopy cover.
How would you like to see significant and regulated trees in your area protected from removal?
The City of Adelaide is constrained by weak tree protection laws. Urgent law reform is needed to facilitate greater protection of trees. If re-elected I will work with my Council to allocated greater resources to keep our significant tree listing up-to-date and maintained.
What involvement should Councils have in decisions about protecting or removing significant and regulated trees?
Councils should be responsible for all decisions that relate to the protection or removal of significant or regulated trees.
What actions would you advocate to slow or mitigate the impacts of climate change in your local government area?
The City of Adelaide has demonstrated Environmental leadership over many years with its Carbon Neutral Action Plan. We are the first and so far only Council in SA to have a power purchase agreement in place so all city operations are powered by renewable resources, which halved our emission (11,000 tonnes) and saved us money. There is still so much to do in both adaptation and mitigation. Temperatures will keep rising, flood and fire will increase. We need to do more. We need to reduce our waste, use smart technology for water use, increase green canopy, transition our fleets to EV and invest in greater residential EV charging infrastructure. If re-elected I will pilot an opt-in FOGO in the South Ward based on the successful trial in Holdfast Bay. We will pursue a community group power purchase for renewable energy, establish a citywide Green Strategy and a community 'green team'. We aim to be a zero waste city by 2030.
What issues are there with traffic and parking in your area?
There is always a balance to be had in a dense urban environment. Our teams review parking on a very regular basis to try to ensure residents, businesses and visitors are all looked after. We need to ensure that the new developments had adequate parking for resident AND visitors. Traffic needs to be slowed, particularly around residential areas. I would advocate strongly for ALL residential streets, other than main streets, to be reduced to 40kph.
How could transport options be improved in your area?
A proper in-depth Citywide access strategy needs to be delivered in collaboration with the State Government. We need better public transport options - including investigating trackless tram technology with extension to North Adelaide and adjoining suburbs. This will be done in concert with the City Plan development as outlined above.
What would your top three priorities be for improving planning policy and outcomes in your local government area?
Deliver the City Plan, a live spatial vision and single source of truth for future development and needs of our citizens
Push to reinstate some of Council's planning assessment powers and advocate for greater consultation and consideration of community needs
Undertake the 'adaptive reuse trial' to identify reuse options and remove red tape