MEDIA: Surprise changes to the Planning and Development Fund – Future opportunities for working and living

The Advertiser, 4 July
Builders green with outrage – Government siphons park space fund

UDIA SA Chief Executive Pat Gerace was interviewed on the controversial regulations that would see Planning and Development Fund used to pay for the ePlanning system. 

“Open space contributions are a substantial part of the cost of development with just over $7000 for every new allotment in infill areas. 

It is concerning that instead of some of these contributions which are supposed to go on open space measures like parks and bike paths, and to transform and rejuvenate suburbs will be spent on administration.

The new electronic planning system should be part of running the department and funded from what should be increased efficiencies and savings in the future.

In addition, we are also concerned that in the fringe areas some metropolitan councils continue to actively encourage a lower requirement for open space (typically around 8% instead of the 12.5%) so they can collect a financial contribution to fund other things and reduce their maintenance, thereby diminishing the amenity provided by developers.

The UDIA has made repeated calls for the guidelines related to open space to be overhauled and this includes the use of funding from the Planning and Development Fund.

The Government should reform the scheme so that it facilitates better urban amenity and accessibility by through a fairer and more flexible approach.”

SA Weekend, 4 July
Death of the open plan? How COVID-19 will change home and office design forever
UDIA SA Chief Executive Pat Gerace was interviewed on the future opportunities for Adelaide as we consider our ways of working and living. 

“Those opportunities could involve a major rethink on investment in major road and transport infrastructure.”

With traffic and congestion easing as more people work from home, Mr Gerace believes infrastructure spending should be re-prioritised.

“A big thing that COVID-19 has highlighted for policy makers is that they should almost certainly reconsider the way they invest in road and transport infrastructure,” he says.

“Using South Rd as an example, we spend billions and billions of dollars continuing to upgrade it, but imagine a government that can put in place incentives to encourage working at home, which saw a reduction in traffic volumes by 20 per cent overnight and those funds were redirected.”

“A lot of the housing density and walkable neighbourhood policies in things like the 30-Year Plan for Adelaide are centred around public transport and cycling, but they still assume you go to and from work, not working from home.”

You can read the full article here. [paywall]