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BCC Candidate Q7of8 - Community Use Zoning

Submitted by webmaster on Sat, 31/03/2012 - 7:50pm

How will you work to ensure that community-use facilities such as sporting grounds, retirement villages or nursing homes, schools, and public housing fit in well with the community, especially with regard to applications for rezoning of those properties for other uses?



I am continually working to meet the needs of my community. During my term as Councillor for Jamboree Ward, I have delivered the Community Hub, while being part of the Council team that managed to have 586 hectares of bushland over the last four years across Brisbane protected.
Council has undertaken an Aged Care Taskforce to ensure provisions are made for nursing homes and aged care in the right locations.

One of my key roles as your local Councillor is to monitor development applications in the district. In my view it is critical that residents are informed about development proposals and have the right to comment or object.
Locally, I write to affected residents about non-compliant DAs and work with them to assess the possible impacts on their home or neighbourhood. It is a battle through as developers are constantly pushing the boundaries and seeking approval for non-compliant developments. This is currently occurring in Skew St Sherwood and I have supported residents and objected as the local Councillor to a large 4-storey proposal. This is why I so strongly opposed the 5 storey medium density zoning, because developers see it as a green light to test boundaries in nearby areas.
The Sherwood Graceville Neighbourhood plan did deliver some improvements regarding the protection of community use sites and parkland preventing land from being lost to development, like the Chelmer Bowls Club land many years ago.
The first and most important step is to ensure that the Plan's intentions are honoured by the community, developers and Council.
Secondly, I take the view that it is my role to work with local residents and with developers (whether private or public) to achieve positive change to developments that reflect community views. I was able to do this successful at the Graceville Quarter site at the five-ways a few years ago and the building height and bulk was significantly reduced to reflect community and planning intentions.
Transparent information and open discussion with the community about development proposals that leads to constructive review is the key.

Again, these sorts of things are all about community engagement and consultation. I am committed to working with local residents to ensure they retain ownership over the look and feel of their suburbs. I want to end the arrogant assumption that ‘Council knows best’, which has been prevalent for far too long. It’s not good enough to predetermine three options and ask residents to pick which one they hate least. It’s also not good enough to pre-determine an outcome and work around or trample over resident’s concerns.
As an example, the Oxley Creek Bikeway project highlights the cheap political point scoring from both sides of politics involved and it short-changes local residents. I would reopen the project to a period of genuine community consultation about all proposed options for the project. No hidden agendas, no egos, just practical solutions.

Re-zoning laws need to be urgently addressed particularly in the case of the proposed Montrose development.
Residents are not being represented when it comes to these types of developments. It is too little too late once our shape and density of our suburbs have been overdeveloped. A common sense approach and strong representation from government representatives is vital.

Public housing does not require Council approval and the State Government has had a history of forcing public housing on communities without consultation. I would ensure that the community is kept aware of local development applications and work where possible to deliver outcomes that areappropriate.

I would not support the forcing of private individuals/groups such as nursing homes and retirement villages opening their grounds to the community.