“Councils must encourage a mix of commercial and residential to keep suburbs vibrant”

What does the real estate industry think of the Spit Junction Masterplan project?

This extract from an article in the Property Observer gives one perspective.

A recent report by the Australian government, State of Australian Cities 2011, identifies the problems being faced by federal and state governments and also councils, where they now need to completely rethink their long-term masterplans. Australia’s population has grown by 3 million in the past decade, yet productivity growth has slowed and then declined since 1998…

Mosman Council recently announced the Spit Junction masterplan – Spit Junction is Mosman’s primary business centre located around the intersection of busy Spit and Military roads. The Spit Junction masterplan is an opportunity to revitalise Spit Junction and make it more amenable to the community. The project involves the:

  • Preparation of a masterplan for Spit Junction; and
  • Feasibility study for the Mosman Civic Centre sites.

I would personally like to see all the properties along Spit Road rezoned to accommodate medium commercial with ground floor retail and restaurant outlets to cater for the nine-to-five workers and at night the local residents would enjoy this new lifestyle experience. Another point is that such developments would allow businesses to relocate back to the suburb, which is exactly where they should be headed. Traffic congestion keeps getting worse and fuel costs keep rising with workers spending less time at home due to traffic congestion.

Over the next 20 years or so we can expect to see councils working to embrace our lifestyle changes where they will seek to balance their communities with a successful blending of all these components. If they don’t their retail strips will look like nothing more than pop-up temporary retail outlets.

Robert Simeon, Richardson & Wrench Mosman and Neutral Bay, 12 March 2012