When Jon Stanhope commented on his disappointment – or was it frustration – with the lack of the ACT Government’s achievement in delivering on social housing, it struck a note with anyone who likewise considers that the LDA/directorate is focused on land sales at the expense of urban development and issues such as social housing.
It has now become a habit for thousands of Canberrans to jump into their cars on Saturday morning and to drive to North Canberra and to make their way to a very special local retail event.
Review The Goods Line Sydney
The decision by the ACT Heritage Council to heritage list 17 of the Northbourne housing precinct does confuse the developments being proposed for the gateway to Canberra.
The ACT has a Planning Minister and he has put out a document titled — Statement of Planning Intent.
We start with words from the City of Sydney – that contains all those words that make sensible people run for cover:
When the ACT Government announced in October that they were putting out to tender the development of an arts precinct within the Kingston Foreshore, it did send a quiet ripple through those involved in the arts.
George Monbiot on moral blankness
Even though I have been involved in political advocacy for far too many years, I am still constantly amazed by the total lack of empathy shown by many decision makers – being both bureaucrats and politicians. These people do not take the time to look at the evidence of what happens as a result of their decisions.
Canberra residents have noticed that whenever the Chief Minister and his LDA/Directorate bureaucrats want to send in the bulldozers into an established suburb, that they use the same propaganda.
Just when most locals probably thought that there have been more than enough discussions and surveys about the Canberra’s new light rail (or trams), the ACT Government has launched another consultation on the topic.
Having any urban park is to be celebrated and all efforts should be made to ensure their continued existence. Parks are constantly under threat from various property industry lobbyists who have the ear of government.
The ACT Government and its business advisors have adopted a destructive language to justify their negative approach to parklands and open spaces in Canberra.
There’s was a recent announcement that the government is calling for developers to put forward proposals to develop part of the Kingston Foreshore site as an arts precinct.
One wonders what their perception and concept of what is art precinct. Then there will be the issues that the government is looking for a commercial entity to propose an arts precinct.
The Bowen Place underpass has been a long time in coming — and is very welcomed. It is a job well done.
More than thirty years ago there was a very vocal community campaign to halt the take over of Glebe Park.
The whole of the Barangaroo story is messy. Sydney based architectural writers are not very happy. Yes their chosen few did not get the contract. Yes even the next team did not survive.
Last week I made the bold statement that “There is little evidence that this ACT Government understands the importance of and the linkages between integrated design, aesthetics, landscape, infrastructure, cities, the environment and climate change.”
Barangaroo Reserve, opened to the public in August 2015. It was immediately greeted with much enthusiasm and was declared a success.
Tuggeranong town centre has received some mixed commentary in recent weeks. Ever since it was reported that Tuggeranong’s population is declining, locals have mounted their soap boxes. They’ve pointed out how it is much loved, that they are proud to live there, and made the call for local action.
Some stories make you wonder. Here’s one of them.
Passengers on Moscow’s underground system can now access a toilet for the first time – but only at one station. click here.
It was not long ago that occupants of a new Civic office building reported faults appearing in the structure. Office workers noticed that floors were sagging.
There’s a good read online about the ‘ShotGun’ houses of New Orleans.
The ACT Government’s Land Development Agency (LDA) circulated a media release late last week that I think was meant to be good news and was supposed to inform us that something is about to happen along Northbourne Ave.
Canberra is a city where residents are continually at odds with the ACT’s planning and development agencies.
I support the introduction of light rail networks across Canberra. We should not be having this debate in 2015. The first tracks should have been laid down in the late 1950s or at least by the mid 1960s.
It was not that long ago that winter in Canberra meant that the air was filled with smoke.
There’s no doubt that the ACT Government has put an emphasis on communications and marketing when it comes to particular urban developments. This is very evident in the number of media statements in circulation.
There are serious systemic problems within the ACT’s planning and development agencies.
How many time have heard people (motorists) complain about any change to the traffic infrastructure to encourage more people to get on your bike.
Highly Recommended Reading.
This issue on Property is very timely as the debate around housing, affordability and ownership continue to dominate how we are making decisions about our cities and towns.
It was during a recent North Canberra Community Council meeting that I realised I was hearing something very rare. The presenter was talking about fairly matter-of-fact issues to do with changes to local traffic lights and footpaths and it sounded as though she identified with the issues being dealt with.
Recently the Dickson Residents Group were sent copies of reports that were published following a series of consultations about the redevelopment of a range of sites in South Canberra.
After seven months of silence since the last workshop to discuss the future options for the Dickson Parklands (Section 72 Dickson), the Dickson Residents Group requested a meeting to clarify a range of issues.
I enjoy the drive between Sydney from Canberra. I do it reasonably often. The mood of the country changes according to the weather, the drought, the latest rains and the time of the day.
Dickson Residents Group Media Release
REZONING DICKSON’S COMMUNITY PRECINCT A BACKWARD STEP FOR NORTH CANBERRA
The North Canberra Community Council (NCCC) has expressed both surprise and disappointment at yesterday’s shock announcement by the ACT Government proposing residential development in Dickson between the Dickson Pool and Dickson Playing Fields. It is known formally as Dickson Section 72 and informally as Dickson Parklands. click here for the full media release from the community council.
Good to see the work by locals, Harris Hobbs Landscapes, being recognised.
click on the image.
Over the years I have wondered about the placement of public art and memorials in and around the parliamentary zone. Here are three stories.
A few years ago the ACT Government had a bright idea to confront the problem of the power of the supermarket giants. It introduced a policy to encourage more competition to the usual two or three. It didn’t deliver.
The demise of Malls
With Canberra struggling with its malls and the government agencies still following old models in what they encourage in the way of shopping centre developments – I am keeping track of stories about the demise of the great shopping malls – here’s a recent one – click here.
Central Canberra needs a dedicated open space for large special events at any time of the year.
In researching the establishment of these Chinese Gardens I came across some of the consultation documents when the public was asked to comment on the gardens being built within Lennox Gardens.
There is one thing that planning officers excel at: creating jobs for themselves. They do this by constantly reinventing planning and development processes that are so complicated that it takes a planning officer to be able to make sense of them.
The state of Canberra’s shopping centres is a hot topic of conversation at present.
Last July the ACT Government announced plans to develop a shipping container village by the lake on the west side of Commonwealth Avenue.
Several decades ago, the centre of Canberra provided a very different shopping experience. Civic was a series of pedestrian plazas with a small complex named The Monaro Mall. In 1989 this mall was enlarged to become the first Canberra Centre.
or the disappearing gardens
Canberra was built with gardens being integrated into each household and throughout the neighbourhoods.
The ACT Planning and Land Authority today announced that the controversial Dickson Coles-DOMA development has been officially refused.
While Australian governments spend a lot of time on transport matters, it usually means cars, maybe public transport and occasionally bicycles. In Canberra the pedestrian is not often on the agenda. Walking is far more fun. I visited Vienna recently and was impressed about many things to do with its urban structure. And now I read that they have a new emphasis on walking and urban planning is allowing for this!
A few travel photographs from not quite the usual tourist destination. This time we were in Maidstone in Kent. The image above is from within the local museum.
It was during a radio program on the future of Civic, the centre of Canberra, that an architectural academic came forward with his Big Idea on how this city centre could be refurbished. To my surprise the academic suggested that Civic’s pedestrian areas should be opened up for cars. I have to say that ‘architectural experts’ often speak on urban matters as if they are living on another planet.
Reality check on Australia
While the many in the world address climate change, the present federal government in Australia continues to prop up Big Coal and anyone else who supports them. So what’s to be done about this? Continue reading Climate Change
An update on development in Canberra
Looking to the next elections for resident friendly solutions
The Dickson residents continue to be disappointed with the ACT Government for allowing so many inappropriate development proposals to be taken seriously. The latest let-down is that local politicians look as if they are allowing a supermarket and residential proposal to progress even though the evidence indicates how wrong it is for this inner suburb.
Fears for the redevelopment of Northbourne
It was well before self-government that a bureaucracy of experts delivered our inner Canberra urban landscapes. While there are many aspects of Canberra’s landscapes to be celebrated, there are questionable decisions by former planners and bureaucrats that we now have to deal with and correct.
The Gehry Building at UTS, Sydney
Review: Dr Chau Chak Wing Building | University of Technology
Many universities in Australia have campuses with lush landscape settings. Then there are the universities that are very contained inner city urban environments. In Sydney, the University of Technology (UTS) is one of the latter.
photo-essay: Chicago L
The ACT Government is to implement the city’s first light rail system. Particular lobby groups have been hounding the government about this decision.
The Good and loads of the Bad and Ugly
The Property Council has issued another one of their occasional gems about planning and development here in Canberra. This one is titled: Transforming Canberra’s CBD. Sometimes you are not sure whether to laugh or cry when you read these documents.
Braddon’s historic car yards in danger
There are reports circulating that the future of an important aspect of Braddon’s heritage is in danger of being lost.
Foolish Urban Dreams and Aspirations
It was earlier today while sitting back on my verandah reading a book on the concept of architecture and enjoyment that this Dickson resident had the pleasant autumnal experience of drifting away into a city of complete amazements. The city’s government had just appointed a Chief Minister of extraordinary vision for urban development.
A strange twist to a story
Development to alter the Yarralumla ambience
The following is a slightly longer version of a post I uploaded to RiotACT. This post concentrated on the new development sites which will replace much of the greenery around the southern edge of this part of Yarralumla. I have left comments about the redevelopment of the former brickwork’s sit for another time.
Braddon Development on the Cusp
The destruction of Canberra through planning
Canberra as a planned city is a myth.
Notice of Work sign
This sign caused a local chuckle.
Residents are having to deal with a stupid development proposal that is backed by the ACT Government for a new supermarket in Dickson.
Review: Monty Don’s Italian Gardens
available on DVD
I did not get to see this program on TV so it was great to catch up with the DVD release. If you at all interested in gardens and their history, then this one is a definite for you
Of course the gardens are those made by the rich and famous/infamous – with at least one exception being an urban market garden that has so far not been consumed by urban developments around Naples.
Canberra Planning is so wrong!
Development dilemmas: part three
The future of the Dickson Precinct and beyond
This is the third of several posts on planning and development issues for Dickson in Canberra. Residential groups around the country share similar frustrations, dilemmas and challenges in dealing with planning and development bureaucracies.
Development dilemmas: part two
The future of the Dickson Parklands
This is the second of several posts on planning and development issues effecting the local residents of Dickson in Canberra. The issues are not unique to Dickson. Residential groups around the country share similar frustrations, dilemmas and challenges in dealing with planning and development bureaucracies.
Development dilemmas: part one
Residents and the future of the Dickson Shops
This is the first of several posts on planning and development issues effecting local residents. The stories and issues are not unique to Dickson in Canberra. Many residential groups around the country share similar frustrations, dilemmas and challenges in dealing with planning and development bureaucracies.
Dickson Supermarket DA consultations extended
Just before Christmas the ACT Planning Authority (ACTPLA) had uploaded for comment the Development Application for the Dickson supermarket development. The original response deadline was the 27th January.
The madness of Canberra’s planning and development
Since the 1960s there has been several rows of public housing located on the main road into Canberra. In the last year, the Dickson Flats have been listed for demolition to allow for brand new multi-unit developments. So far so good. Maybe! (pic by Paul Costigan)
Planning and Development of the Dickson Shops
A bad case study in community engagement
It was just days before Christmas (2014) when local residents may have noticed that a development application with big ramifications for their precinct was now available online for comment – with a month in which to submit any comments.
Barangaroo Point to open in March 2015
A Review of architectural reviewers
The widespread corruption within planning agencies
Over many years I have been observed the annual round of numerous industry events. This includes award dinners as well as seminars and conferences. Besides all the usual suspects that attend such functions, there are invitations to a cohort of government departmental officers and/or key personnel from planning and development agencies. These invitations are usually in the form of complimentary tickets.
Comment on good planning and sensitive development
Comment: Locals often do not get it right
In my home suburb of Dickson in Canberra, the push is on to allow some commercial residential development on what has always been designated as a community space. The site is now known as the Dickson Parklands.
I have written about this in previous blogs – click here.