Wagga Wagga City Council is hosting a second Facebook Live Q&A session on proposed planning amendments for the Morgan, Murray and Forsyth streets precinct.
The development concept for the precinct has been a topic of debate for the city’s residents, and the City Strategy Team are keen to address concerns at the session next Tuesday 30 June at 5pm.
Senior Strategic Planner Crystal Atkinson helped host the first Facebook Live Q&A session on the precinct in early May and said the online method of community engagement was beneficial for both attendees and Council staff alike.
“For the Morgan Street precinct, we still have our usual forms of engagement – email, mail, phone calls and website, but we wanted to give people the opportunity to have that live discussion in a group forum, even during the pandemic,” Ms Atkinson said.
“Planning amendments can be complicated and confusing, and in my experience, they’re easier to understand when you can hear someone explain them,” Ms Atkinson said.
“It’s also helpful to be able to ask questions and have them answered on the spot.
“Another benefit of online forums is that you can see the questions other people are asking, and hear our responses – they may cover things that you hadn’t thought about, or would like to know, so by having that forum-type discussion, community members can get exposed to other parts of the planning system and have more awareness of the big picture.”
The Facebook Live Q&A session also gives Council the opportunity to hear from the community’s less outspoken residents.
“I’ve been contacted directly after other public forums by people who had a question but didn’t particularly want to stand up in front of a crowd.
“It’s important we hear from all members of our community, so our Facebook Live sessions definitely give people the opportunity to ask their question without having to pick up a microphone.”
What to expect at the Facebook Live Q&A session 30 June, 5pm
“We’ll start off by doing a bit of a recap of the amendments we’ve currently got on exhibition, talk about where we are now, the key topics, then open it up for more questions,” Ms Atkinson said.
“It’s okay if you missed the first session, this one will be perfect for you to join in.
“The aim of all our community engagement is to answer questions and motivate people to make a submission – whether it’s positive or negative.
“We’ve received close to 100 submissions on the Morgan Street precinct, so we’re really happy with that.
“Once the consultation period ends, we’ll collate all the submissions, which will be anonymous at that point, and put them into a report which goes to Council.
“We’d love as many people as possible to join the Facebook Live Q&A session, hear what’s happening and make a submission – because your opinion matters.”
Morgan, Murray and Forsyth streets precinct