After over eight years of work we are in the final stages of getting our Neighbourhood Plan.
When Campbell Newman was first campaigning for Lord Mayor of Brisbane he promised to put in place a process to review the old Local Area Plans.
Our previous Local Area Plan, called the Walter Taylor South Local Area Plan was the result of two years of community consultation. It eventually became part of the Brisbane City Plan although it was reduced to about three pages. In practice it proved to have a number of deficiencies including:
- Inadequate protection for character housing in areas containing some of the remaining character housing areas of Brisbane
- The infill of small inappropriate houses by sliding old Queenslanders sideways and building small Tuscan style houses in the midst of old Queenslanders thus destroying streetscapes
- The demolition of old Queenslanders by developers allowing them to fall into disrepair
- Failure to observe front and side setbacks
When it came the turn of the Graceville Sherwood Neighbourhood Plan as it had become known the Brisbane City Council provided a number consultation sessions for local residents to express their views on how the Neighbourhood Plan should be developed. Walter Taylor South Action Group was actively involved in these sessions as well as sessions with town planners.
As a result a draft Neighbourhood Plan was developed and released. This draft reduced character house protection in parts of Corinda whilst it proposed development of up to five storeys for parts of Corinda and Sherwood. This draft provoked considerable community concern. As a result a further round of community consultation was undertaken. The main resident concerns were reduction in the areas of character housing protection and the introduction of five storey buildings.
Eventually the final version of the Plan was released which retained the provision for five storey buildings in parts Corinda and Sherwood.
Walter Taylor South did and the residents gained additional protection for character housing in the new plan, for which we congratulate the Brisbane City Council.
We are disappointed that the Council has seen fit to raise the three storey limit in parts of Corinda and Sherwood to five storeys particularly as there has been very low take up of three storey buildings in these areas.
This in our view will lower the amenity of these areas particularly by increasing traffic flow in an area that does not have the ability to improve its road system. This is further compounded by the traffic problems at the southern end caused by the Indooroopilly Bridge.
The future of the Alan Fletcher research station remains unclear. There is a epetition asking for "We, the undersigned, call on the Queensland Government and Brisbane City Council to ensure that the Alan Fletcher Research Station in Magazine Street Sherwood is preserver as green space and call on Council and the State Government to protect this piece of river front land for community use and parkland to provide greater connectivity to the Sherwood Arboretum. Once this epetition is posted we will provide a link to it from our website.
A Brisbane wide group has been formed and the Walter Taylor South Action group has decided to join together with many other groups across Brisbane in order to have a greater voice in planning issues. You can see details at http://www.brisbaneresidentsunited.org.au, including a copy of our press launch speech.