UDIA WA is calling for a realistic debate on Perth’s future growth following a recent article on WAtoday about a number of protestors calling for an inquiry into Planning Minister Rita Saffioti’s use of discretionary powers to approve projects.

The WAtoday article can be read here and UDIA has prepared the below response to this article and other requests from the media regarding this issue:

“UDIA WA is supportive of thoughtful density and quality infill development in appropriate areas across Perth to ensure that our city can continue to thrive and sustainably accommodate people in the places they want to live,” UDIA WA CEO Tanya Steinbeck said.

“As an industry, we want people to have greater housing choice throughout the metropolitan area, in close proximity to the services and amenities they need including employment, transport and importantly – close to family and friends.

“We support infill development that achieves quality design outcomes while adding to the vibrancy and amenity of a local area.

“That is why the State Government’s Design WA guidelines for apartment and medium density developments in particular, are so critical to ensuring an exceptional standard of development across a range of criteria.

“It is also important that we see timely implementation of recommendations from the Planning Reform Action Plan, particularly in relation to transparency of decision making so that any ambiguity around decisions is removed. The WA Planning Commission has already started acting on this with early actions around notifications and Key Matters Cover Sheets announced last week.

“Both the Design WA guidelines and the Planning Reform Action Plan address legitimate and understandable concerns that residents have about new development in their local area.

“We recognise that the State Government need to balance the needs of local communities with broader needs and expectations from the Perth community around leveraging existing and delivering new infrastructure.

“There are many middle ring areas that offer sensible and appropriate options for infill development at greater density, particularly around train stations and other activity centres that provide a range of services to residents.

“Let’s have a realistic discussion about Perth’s future growth and why infill development is important in addressing sustainability, affordability and liveability issues in our beautiful city.”