From the CEO

While the term ‘uncertainty’ continues to reign supreme, there were several announcements this week that UDIA welcomed as more positive moves toward WA’s reopening and a glimmer of hope has been provided for those organisations severely impacted by lack of skills and ongoing restrictions.

The Premier has finally reduced isolation requirements down to seven days and better clarification of close contacts provides much more certainty for business.  With third dose vaccination rates currently sitting at close to 48%, a more official state border opening is imminent.

The Federal Government decision to open to international travellers from 21 February is also likely to see more people able to make it into WA over the coming weeks and months. There is no doubt we need this.  For economic growth and to keep our industries operational.

It is good to feel like we are turning a corner this week and here at UDIA headquarters we are looking forward to welcoming many of our members next week to our first industry luncheon for the year.  If you haven’t already registered, there are details below.  Now more than ever, arming ourselves with the most up to date insights and information with regard to the political and economic climate is crucial.

It’s going to be a challenging year ahead but I am confident the resilience of our industry coupled with WA’s solid economic performance means that we can continue to weather the storm, as long as we work together.

UDIA WA welcomes appointment of new planning Director General

This week we welcomed the announcement by Minister Rita Saffioti that Anthony Kannis PSM has been appointed Director General of the Department of Planning; Lands; and Heritage (DPLH).

Anthony will shift from his current position as Managing Director of METRONET on 28 February 2022 having recently been awarded a Public Service Medal for outstanding public service to transport and infrastructure reform.

His previous role was Executive Director WA Police, which he held since May 2013. Prior to that, he spent nearly seven years as Executive Director at the Department of Treasury.

UDIA WA has had the opportunity to work with Mr Kannis in his current role as Managing Director of METRONET and we look forward to continuing a positive and collaborative working relationship moving forward.

“UDIA WA has highlighted the need for DPLH to take a more strategic leadership approach in decision making and forward planning in relation to Perth’s urban growth and development,” UDIA WA CEO Tanya Steinbeck said.

“Mr Kannis has an outstanding record of senior public service and we look forward to working with him and his team to realise the benefits of a significant planning reform agenda.”

UDIA WA also welcomes the move of the Market Led Proposals Team from 1 March 2022 into DPLH from their current home in the Department of Finance.

Expert panellists to join Jonathan Pain

Three expert panellists are set to join Jonathan Pain for what will be an extremely insightful and very timely Q&A session at our Industry Luncheon next Friday February 18th.

Kaylene Gulich, CEO at the Western Australian Treasury Corporation, Steven Rowley, Director at Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute (AHURI) and Grant Dusting, Director of Strategy at McCrindle will join Mr Pain following his opening comments and will be taking questions from the audience as we debate what the future has in store for WA in terms of economic indicators and the housing market more specifically.

This is one event you will not want to miss, but with registrations closing this Friday, make sure to register today! Click here for more information and to book.

A big thanks goes to our Industry Partner Harvey Norman Commercial Division, Technology Partner nbn™ Australia, Event Sponsors Mirvac and CLE Town Planning + Design and our Networking Partner JDSi Consulting Engineers for supporting this event!

Strategic Committees meet to complete first round of committee cycle

UDIA’s Liveability and Economy Strategic Committees met this week, with UDIA’s Environment Committee set to meet tomorrow morning to close out the first round of committee and advisory group meetings for 2022.

Key issues discussed by the Liveability Committee included maintaining housing supply to help alleviate current rental shortages while being able to maintain housing affordability in the longer-term.

Similarly, the Economic Committee also discussed short-term and longer-term challenges including ensuring the effective operation of development contribution schemes, workforce attraction measures and improving regulatory practices.

UDIA looks forward to working with members to develop solutions to these challenges.  We will be launching our finalised Policy Priorities for 2022 to members at our State Conference in Bunker Bay.  The key strategies and actions have been well informed by committee and advisory group discussion and feedback to date.

Very high caseload environment critical worker definition and protocols implemented

This week, UDIA welcomed the new definitions around a close contact and the associated testing and isolation protocols coming into the effect.

Under the new definitions a close contact is considered anyone who has been in contact with a COVID positive case for 15 minutes in a face to face setting where either party removes their mask or 2 hours in a small room where either party removes their mask or if advised as such by WA Health.

Upon identifying as a close contact there are different testing requirements based around whether you are symptomatic or asymptomatic (details of which can be found here) with all close contacts only needing to isolate for 7 days with a negative test result on Day 7.

For more information, head to the HealthyWA website, here.

Latest land sales figures set to be released

Tomorrow UDIA WA will be releasing the latest edition of our Urban Development Index which will recap the state of the market for the final quarter in 2021.

Building on the momentum from the Building Stimulus measures in 2020, 2021 has proven to be another strong year for land sales in WA, with the latest results set to highlight another solid quarter.

Keep an eye out for the full results being released exclusively to members tomorrow.

State Design Review Panel

Applications are now open to join the Western Australian State Design Review Panel.

The State Design Review Panel are looking for individuals with knowledge and expertise in Aboriginal engagement and demonstrate awareness of complex cultural issues. Aboriginal people are strongly encouraged to apply.

Additional experience in the built environment industry, including architecture, landscape architecture, urban design, planning, heritage, environmental design, consultation and transport planning is desirable but not essential.

The State Design Review Panel provides independent advice to government agencies, decision-makers and proponents on the design quality of significant and strategic development proposals.

Applications close on Wednesday 23 February 2022.

For more information, click here.

Rising Property Market?

CoreLogic recently analysed the latest inflation figures for Australia over the December 2021 quarter as released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), comparing them to the Reserve Bank of Australia’s forecasts and what this means for the property market in Australia.

The figures released by the ABS showed the inflation rate for the year was 3.5% and was once again beating forecasts from the RBA, exceeding the November forecast by 25 basis points, and the May 2020 forecast by 225 basis points.

The analysis by CoreLogic suggests the RBA has underestimated the speed with which the Australian economy would bounce back from COVID-19.

“The implication is that if unemployment and inflation are recovering quicker than expected, a cash rate rise may also be sooner than in 2023 or 2024, which is what the RBA had been signalling,” the report by Eliza Owen and Tim Lawless stated.

“When the cash rate rises, housing values could experience some downwards pressure. Testing the correlation between the cash rate and the national CoreLogic Home Value Index between January 2002 and January 2022 shows an inverse correlation of 84.7%.

“Lagging the cash rate by up to a year increases the strength of the correlation, which suggests it takes some time for movements in the cash rate to have their maximum effect on the property market. Consecutive increases or reductions in the cash rate will also play a role in the correlation becoming stronger over time.”

The consensus around a cash rate rise happening this year is rising with a number of banks raising their fixed rate offerings above the record low figures seen over the past couple of years.

What will happen with the economic and property market remains to be seen, however UDIA is delighted we will be hearing from economic expert Jonathan Pain next week who will provide key insights at our Industry Lunch. There is still chance to book your spot, here, but be quick as registrations close tomorrow.

To read the CoreLogic report in full, click here.

Emergency Solar Management

As part of the transformation of the network to support greater connection of renewables and DER growth, the WA State Government is introducing Emergency Solar Management (also known as Distributed Photo Voltaic Management or DPVM) as a last resort measure to manage the risks of minimum demand and its impact on secure electricity supply in the South West Interconnected System (SWIS).

From 14 February 2022, all new and upgraded inverters installed with a capacity of 5kW or less will need to be capable of being remotely switched off during an extreme minimum demand event.

This new measure will not interrupt power supply, as the grid will continue to supply power to customers, and it is expected to be utilised only several times a year for a few hours.

For more information, click here.

Updated requirements for entering UDIA WA office

As Perth, Peel and beyond begin to experience an increase in Omicron cases due to community transmission, it is more critical than ever to ensure that UDIA WA takes all the necessary steps to minimise the risk of COVID-19 exposure in the workplace.

The WA State Government has mandated COVID-19 vaccinations for many Western Australian workplaces. Further to consultation and endorsement from UDIA WA Staff and Council, UDIA WA has implemented a new COVID-19 Vaccine Policy that requires all workers and visitors to be fully vaccinated prior to entering the workplace premises in Subiaco. This means that all personnel conducting work at the UDIA WA workplace must have received two doses of an approved COVID-19 vaccine.

From 31 January 2022, all visitors to the UDIA WA workplace (Level 1, 3 Wexford Street, Subiaco) will be required to allow a staff member from UDIA to sight their vaccination status or proof of exemption. Anyone who doesn’t show evidence when requested will be denied entry.

In line with Western Australian government health directions, our event venues could also start to introduce mandatory entry requirements.

Crown Perth have stated that as of 31 January 2022 all visitors (aged 18 years and over) to the Casino and Pearl Room and visitors (aged 16 years and over) to all other venues including hotels, Crown Spa and events and conferencing facilities must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Crown Perth will request official proof of vaccination or medical contraindication certificate for guests wishing to gain access to these venues. Entry will be denied if official proof of vaccination or a medical contraindication certificate cannot be presented.

Please ensure you keep an eye on our event pages for any venue entry mandates and proof of vaccination requirements.

Please note that in line with the State Government policy, the requirement to manage the COVID-19 vaccinations for your organisation’s personnel solely resides with your organisation.

Further information from the State Government can be accessed via the following link here.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us at

Access to UDIA WA website changed

Access to the UDIA WA website recently changed as part of our aim to provide exceptional member services.

UDIA WA has invested in new technology that will integrate our member database with our website and online event registration capabilities with our new UDIA WA online Community Portal providing our members with seamless, integrated services and up to date information at the click of a button.

As part of the change all login details for the website were removed and each member organisation’s Key Representative was granted access initially and the Key Representative can now provide access to a further 2 representatives for their organisation.

All the necessary information was emailed to Key Representatives last week and can be accessed here for more information.

Once active the UDIA WA Community Portal includes exclusive member only access to:

  • Urban Express weekly news
  • The Urbanist quarterly magazine
  • The Urban Development Index quarterly market update
  • The Urban Intelligence economic data report
  • UDIA WA Members Directory listing details of all UDIA WA members
  • UDIA WA Diversity Toolkit
  • Relevant governance documents including the UDIA WA Annual Reports and Constitution
  • Ability to update you and your organisations details

For more information or any queries, email