Welcome to the 8th edition of my e-newsletter (July 2015). This has been a busy month with some passionate debate about the future of the Frome Street Bikeway and the Royal Croquet Club.
Adelaide City Council in the News
Small businesses, schools and office buildsings will be eligible for solar subsidies for the first time following Council’s decision to triple the solar incentive scheme to $150,000. I was delighted to support this initiative. The State government also matched the investment with a further $150,000 providing an exciting opportunity for us to make even greater progress on reducing carbon emissions in the CBD. See this article in InDaily for more information.
Frome Street’s future
Council Committee recommended that ACC investigate redesigning the existing Frome Street Bikeway to provide for two driving lanes during peak hours. I voted against this motion and would rather see Council focus on rolling out new cycling infrastructure – particularly given an Expert Evaluation concluded the project was reducing traffic flow and congestion in the city. The matter generated some media debate. Some of my comments were reported in The Advertiser, InDaily and on Channel 10 and 7 News.
This matter was revised the following week at Council. More information on the outcome of that meeting is detailed below.
RCC in Victoria Square?
Council Committee also recommended that new restrictions be placed on the operating hours of the RCC and there was a move to mandate the club moving on from Victoria Square from 2016. I shared my concerns with Rip It Up and The Advertiser.
The debate continued at Council and moves to reduce operating hours were abandoned in favour of improvements to community access and amenity of the square. See below for more details.
Development in the Parklands?
Council has spoken out against Development Plan Amendments in the Parklands. I believe it’s important that we retain a high level of influence over developments to prevent ‘mission creep’ and further encroachment on the land by government. The advice of the Adelaide Parklands Authority is available for access online (see page 61, item 12).
Council Meeting, 16 June
Motions on Notice
Attendance at Melbourne Masterclass on City Greening
I was delighted to accept a nomination to attend a masterclass on greening in Melbourne on Council’s behalf. This was a valuable visit and I plan to draw on the lessons learned in further promoting greening in the CBD.
Motions without Notice
Moving the Royal Adelaide Hospital
Councillor Abiad moved the following motion on the RAH site.
- Notes that the transfer of the Royal Adelaide Hospital from the East End to the West End of the City has potential to have significant and negative economic and social impacts on the East End.
- Notes that the redevelopment of the East End site (“the site”) offers a significant opportunity to develop a world class precinct that will provide an economic stimulus and social vibrancy to the East End and the City as a whole.
- Requests that the Lord Mayor write to the Deputy Premier,
3.1 requesting that a copy of the guidelines and design principles issued as part of the Government’s Expression of Interest process for the redevelopment of the site be provided to Council
3.2 seeking a briefing from the State Government regarding the redevelopment of the site
3.3 requesting that a Council and an Administration representative be included in the planning and governance processes for redeveloping the site.
- Requests that Administration bring back a report advising the nature and level of economic activity required on the redeveloped site to compensate for the transfer of current activities to the West End.”
I seconded the following amendment from Councillor Martin to insert a reference to returning some of the land to Parklands:
‘3.4 – restating the Council’s position on vacated buildings being returned to Park Lands and noting that there is a community expectation that at least some land be returned to Park Land.’
Unfortunately this amendment was lost but I will continue to advocate for Council to make the most of opportunities to connect the Parklands to the CBD. The debate was reported in The Advertiser.
Promoting gender diversity on boards
Councillor Corbell, moved the following motion (on behalf of Councillor Clearihan who was representing Council interstate).
“That Administration brings back a report that outlines our current approach to appointing members to Boards and explores opportunities to ensure appropriate gender representation on Council Boards and Committees is achieved.”
I seconded the motion and believe that Adelaide City Council should be a leader in promoting gender diversity. Unfortunately the motion was lost, however some Councillors flagged a desire to look at the issue of improved diversity on boards at a future meeting.
Council Meeting, 30 June
Deputations and Public Forums
Ms Kelly Henderson made a deputation to Council in which she expressed concern at commercial use of Light Square.
Ms Sally Neville addressed Council on her concerns about the impact of the Fringe on bricks and mortar businesses. Mr Ian Horne made a deputation following Ms Neville on the same matter.
Council then received deputations from Ms Sanja Sierp and Mr Colin Martin regarding the recent Shandong Trade Mission.
Dr John Tomic then made a deputation to Council on his concerns about the safety of the Frome Street Bikeway.
Frome Street Bikeway
Councillor Abiad amended the recommendation he put at Committee and instead moved the following motion:
- Receives and notes the Frome Street Bikeway Independent Evaluation report – Part 1 included as Attachment E to Item 19 on the Agenda for the meeting of the Economic & Community Development Committee held on 23 June 2015.
- Receives and notes the Frome Street Bikeway Independent Evaluation report – Part 2: Off-Peak parking Only Design Option, included as Attachment F to Item 19 on the Agenda for the meeting of the Economic & Community Development Committee held on 23 June 2015.
- is committed to the retention of the separated bike ways;
- Endorse the Administration to proceed with the planning, design and costing of measures to improve and maximise the benefits of the Frome bikeway from Carrington Street to Pirie Street, comprising of:
4.1. applying the Adelaide Design Manual with considerations and allowances for a future whole of street approach;
4.2. improved safety for all users;
4.3. a better flow of vehicle traffic during peak and off-peak times;
4.4. optimisation of parking on Frome Street and surrounding areas;
4.5. green surface treatment of the bike lane through signalised intersections;
4.6. re-shaping some traffic islands;
4.7. replacing bike racks at Ifould Street with landscaping; and
4.8. improved greening and general landscaping in the area.
5.Endorse the Administration to proceed with the planning, design and costing of options for the continuation of the Frome bikeway from Pirie Street to the River Torrens comprising of:
5.1. applying the Adelaide Design Manual with considerations and allowances for a future whole of street approach, including greening; and
5.2. the adoption of learning from Stage 1 Frome Street Bikeway and the associated independent evaluation report.
- Requests an overarching traffic and economic analysis between Carrington Street to the River Torrens and the immediate surrounds be commissioned to assess safety, traffic and parking improvements. That the analysis also investigates and considers the opportunities and constraints associated with the State Government’s O-Bahn City Access Project, Royal Adelaide Hospital redevelopment and the announced High School.
- Endorse the development and implementation of an awareness campaign for all road users, as outlined in Attachment E to Item 19 on the Agenda for the meeting of the Economic & Community Development Committee held on 23 June 2015.
8.Request that the planning, design, costing and broader analysis report outlined above be presented to the relevant committee no later than 30 Sep 2015to allow consideration and endorsement for wide public consultation prior to final consideration and presentation of the consultation results to Council.
- Noting the pending Royal Adelaide Hospital site redevelopment, the O-Bahn City Access Project, as well as the recently announced High School, requests the Lord Mayor and CEO to seek funding and planning assistance from the State Government and Minister of Transport and Infrastructure, and seek that our administration work collaboratively with the Minister’s office for future improvements of the Frome Street Bikeway.”
I sought to amend the motion by replacing Point 4 above, with the following:
“4.Endorse the Administration to proceed with the planning, design and costing of measures to maximise the benefits of the Frome bikeway as recommended in the Independent Evaluation, comprising of:
4.1 green surface treatment of the bike lane through signalised intersections;
4.2 re-shaping some traffic islands; and
4.3 replacing bike racks at Ifould Street with landscaping.”
My amendment sought to make the improvements advocated in the expert report and then focus on the future. This would have ensured that there was no redesign of the existing separated bikeway and avoided commissioning yet another report into Frome Street. While my amendment was narrowly defeated (by just 1 vote), a majority of 6 Councillors told the meeting they would not support any major redesign of Frome Street. Indeed, the proposal to specifically look at returning Frome Street to four lanes of traffic in peak times as originally suggested was not in the motion put to Council.
Council will now receive another report in September looking at options for further improvements to the existing bikeway and its potential for expansion. My view remains that we should heed the advice of the expert evaluation: make the minor alterations the experts proposed and then focus on the future roll out. I remain strongly opposed to any major redesign and believe this would represent a waste of ratepayers’ money.
Motions on Notice
Councillor Martin moved the following motion:
- Noting that the budget for the 2015/16 financial year proposes an efficiency target of $3.5m representing 3.6% of General Operating Expenditure, Council directs management to implement a best endeavour target to deliver further efficiency savings of 3.6% of the variable, administrative cost of delivery of Operating Projects and Asset Renewals and the variable administrative costs of Business Operations.
- The above efficiency savings should be calculated on the basis that service levels and staff numbers remain constant
- Management be asked to report progress against the efficiency targets through the existing Quarterly Forecast Reporting process.”
I voted against the motion as I was concerned that an efficiency dividend would place unfair pressure on the organisation to deliver more with less resources.
Special Meeting, July 7
Council held a special meeting to discuss the Council’s position on the State Government’s Zone Development Plan Amendment (DPA). Council objected to the DPA and agreed to make a submission to the Development Assessment Advisory Committee requesting that the DPA be amended. You can read Council’s full statement here.
Council Meeting, Tuesday 14 July
Deputations and Public Forums
Council received deputations from Mr Greg Griffen, Mr John Meek, Mr Anthony Franzon, Mr Greg Griffen, and Mr Stuart Duckworth on the issue of the Royal Croquet Club.
Royal Croquet Club in Victoria Square
Councillor Antic put the following motion:
- Endorses the use of Victoria Square/Tarntanyangga during the 2016 Adelaide Fringe.
- Endorses the positioning statement and guiding principles (contained within Item 9 on the Agenda for the meeting of the Economic & Community Development Committee held on 23 June 2015) as a guide for the use of Victoria Square/Tarntanyangga during 2015/16.
- Grants delegated authority to the Acting CEO, to continue negotiations with Royal Croquet Club and Adelaide Fringe for the use of Victoria Square/Tarntanyangga (“the Square”) for the 2016 Adelaide Fringe, and to bring a report back to the relevant committee or council for approval, with the following conditions to be met:
3.1 substantial improvements to external visual amenity and perimeter of the
3.2 for loud music to cease in the Square on midnight every night of the week;
3.3 lockout of the venue on Friday and Saturday night to be at 1am;
3.4 close the venue on Friday & Saturday night by 2am;
3.5 allow for the general public and community to access parts of the Square, if
not all the Square, during the day;
3.6 communicate to the operators of the Royal Croquet Club Council’s intent to
transition the event to another more suitable location within the City of
Adelaide in 2017.
- Notes that the Victoria Square/Tarntanyangga Community Land Management Plan (CLMP) will be amended to reflect Council’s short term position.
- Notes that the review of the Park Lands Management strategy and Community Land Management Plans (CLMPS) will inform and support the long term management of the Park Lands and Squares for large scale events.”
I then moved an amendment that part 3.6 be deleted, therefore not insisting on the Royal Croquet Club’s departure from Victoria Square. This was agreed to but then followed by another amendment from Councillor Abiad:
“That the motion be amended by the inclusion of an additional Part 3.6 to read as follows:
‘3.6 in light of the Royal Croquet Club flagging their intention to move from Victoria Square for Adelaide City Council to assist the operators of the Royal Croquet Club to transition the event to another more suitable setting within the City of Adelaide in 2017.’
The amendment was passed. As a result Council agreed to the above conditions proposed by Councillor Antic and agreed to work with the RCC to find an alternative location should they wish to move. I am supportive of improving community access and amenity on Victoria Square, however I did not want to see Council forcing the RCC from the site or impeding their business by imposing operating hours that were too restrictive. Council will continue to encourage large scale events in the city while working with fixed businesses to ensure they maximise the benefits that can flow from the Festival season. This news report provides a good summary of the debate.
This newsletter summarises the key outcomes from Council meetings but if you would like to read the minutes in full these are available from the Adelaide City Council website. http://www.adelaidecitycouncil.com/your-council/meetings/agendas-minutes/
Community Activities and Events
Over the last few weeks I have attended the following community and Council activities and events. If you have an event in your neighbourhood that you would like me to attend, please do let me know.
- Council Meeting, 16 June
- Economic and Community Development Committee, 23 June
- Finance and Business Services, 23 June
- Urban Forest Masterclass – Melbourne, 25 June
- SA Italian Association Pizza and Pasta night, 28 June
- Council Meeting, 30 June
- East End Adelaide AGM, 1 July
- Architecture Awards, 3 July
- Fairly Educated Adelaide – Panel discussion on Adelaide as a Fair Trade City, 4 July
- Aboriginal and Torres Straight Islander Flag Raising Ceremony and NAIDOC Awards, 6 July
- Special Council Meeting, 7 July
- Adelaide Parklands Authority Meeting, 8 July
- National NAIDOC Awards, 10 July
- Council Meeting, 14 July
- Council Strategic Planning Day, 18 July