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‘One Step Forward, Two Steps Back’ for Brisbane?


What are the potential outcomes for our city, based on the recent Major Amendment Package E to Brisbane City Plan?

This question is at the forefront of many minds in our industry, and everyone else who cares about housing, sustainability and liveability of our city.

Does the Package offer enough to facilitate the ‘contained, sustainable and functional communities’ and ‘to provide housing diversity offering choice to different household types and individuals to suit residents through different life-cycle stages’ that is the stated purpose of the Emerging Community Zone of the Brisbane Planning scheme?

We support Council in its initiative to implement improvements and innovations including formally recognising car sharing services, however we believe there is potential for much more successful outcomes if some of the proposed amendments were not so restrictive and prescriptive. For example:

Emerging Community Zone Code

The Amendment Package proposes to restrict dwelling densities to 18 dwellings/hectare, that is single family dwelling lots, in almost all Emerging Community land in Brisbane. While one of the exceptions are selected sites within 400 metres of major and district centres and high frequency public transport, 400m is well below what we think should be considered ‘walking distance’.

The proposed conditions will stagnate Brisbane as a low density sprawling city and restrict the development of compact, walkable communities in our future urban areas.

Car Sharing Opportunity

Car sharing is another important proposal in the Major Amendment Package E, which we strongly support.  Again, the conditions outlined in the proposal – “must be owned and operated by the Body Corporate, and only equates to one standard private vehicle bay” - make it too difficult to call ‘an opportunity’.

In our recommendations we state that “reducing minimum car parking numbers where car sharing services are made available, not on a one per one basis, but recognising the nature of car sharing and enabling it to be equivalent of more than one standard car park where a minimum standard applies.”

Our full submission to the Brisbane City Council also covers the issues of the Subdivision Code, Waterway Overlay Code and Vegetation Planning Scheme Policy.

You can view the full submission here.

Why we care

As experts in the fields of Town Planning, Surveying, Urban Design, Landscape Architecture and Environmental Services, our clients rely on our knowledge of all relevant laws and regulation, and on our ability to be active participants in policy development.

We understand this and take every opportunity to make contributions to important matters affecting not only our industry participants but also the entire Brisbane community, through the housing outcomes, which directly affect our community’s lifestyle and wellbeing.

Our senior staff are regularly sought out for their contribution to State and Local policy initiatives, and we maintain an active role with industry leading bodies including Property Council, EIANZ, UDIA, PIA, AILA and HIA.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us. We are here to help.