Terry Walsh: Adelaide has to get high(er)

Terry Walsh has written an opinion piece Terry Walsh: Adelaide has to get high(er) which has been published in AdelaideNow.

And we know that more and more South Australians would love to buy a smaller home in an inner suburb close to services and facilities - if only they could find one.

Do we really. Only last week, in the news was the fact that 45 Park Terrace, Gilberton didn't sell enough apartments to proceed. There is also plenty of vacant space in the CBD which could be developed without touching quiet residential areas. At the turn of the 20th Century the CBD population was double what it is now.

And these changes are very modest indeed. One-third of the area affected is gaining one or two floors of extra height only.

As readers would be aware, in reality many areas are being rezoned from Residential 1 to 4 storey flats, while at the same time having minimum block sizes slashed. This is a dramatic change to quiet residential streets, particularly those located along the linear park where there is no access to public transport or shops and other facilities within walking distance.

Councils need to consider what they contribute to the broader state plan and how their development plans complement rather than detract from them.

Councils are elected by residents and need to understand the concerns of residents and the reasons why residents live in the area. Developers might also find their projects more successful and better received if they understand the desires of the community, rather than chasing quick profits. Rather than bland cookie cutter suburbs, we should be encouraging zoning which takes into account the unique characteristics of each suburb and look to foster those elements.

SPRA was formed from concerns about developers knocking down pre-1920s homes in St Peters and building cheap cream-brick walk-up flats. There are still examples littered through the suburb to remind us of how a tragedy was narrowly avoided. Evonne Moore has also written a detailed response.