Premier Mark McGowan has come out strongly in support of Property Council WA’s advocacy position on well-designed places, saying his government is committed to changing the way density and infill is done in Perth.
“We are committed to creating a Perth that works better … (with transport links that) builds density on those transport links (that is) of high quality and (is) accepted by the community. And that we create across Perth not only the volume of homes that we will need in coming decades but the variety of homes that we will need,” Mr McGowan said.
Property Council WA Executive Director Sandra Brewer said the property industry was pleased the State Government was spelling out the benefits of density and acknowledging the job creation and training opportunities delivered by the property industry.
“Our research found that West Australians want secure homes and safe streets, to feel connected to their community, have access to cultural pursuits and more affordable housing choices close to transport, green spaces and beaches,” Ms Brewer said.
Mr McGowan declared he was in favour of better and higher density; planning reform with faster approvals and less red tape; more West Australians experiencing the benefits that come from having access to public transport; more construction activity to create jobs for West Australians and more training opportunities so that more West Australians can take up those jobs.
“I am not afraid of high density or more people in the inner suburbs living closer to work,” Mr McGowan said, adding he favoured a “complete revamp of areas like the Cottesloe beachfront”.
The Premier, who paid tribute to the extensive teamwork he said had gone into Metronet and planning reform, said the State Government was committed to avoiding problems faced by Sydney and Melbourne, now forced to retrofit rail lines in existing urban areas.
“We want the density created (in our transport oriented developments) to be done right,” Mr McGowan said adding that Design WA apartment and precinct guidelines would leave a positive legacy for future generations. “Ultimately it’s about learning from mistakes of the past and creating a better quality of life, quality of density that will win the support of the public.”
He said Design WA medium-density guidelines, being drafted, would unlock the potential for medium density and that getting strata reforms right was important “if we want to build confidence in density”.