Wednesday 12 December 2007

Council development corruption

Well.. I get a lot of emails at CairnsBlog.

Like we are some spokesperson for those that aren't heard! Some just want to share their tale about dealing with the Cairns City Council .. others pour it all out!

If you have a favourite story to tell, and want to share it with the world, please drop me a line.

Today, this email today struck a chord...

  • From: Tracey Lords
    Sent: Wednesday, 12 December 2007
    Subject: Council Development Corruption

    I went this morning to purchase gift vouchers for my staff from Cairns Central. It was 10 AM, and yet it was almost impossible to find a car park. I was more surprised to see how empty the centre was, and I while purchasing the vouchers at the service desk I commented on this.

    Cairns Central staff said "
    Oh, those cars are all from Council workers - Council has almost no parking and they all park here".

    I was also regaled with a story from a couple years back, when Cairns Central management at the time tried leaving the parking garage closed until 9:30 AM to discourage them. They received angry calls from senior Council staff threatening them, so they relented.

    This brings up a more blatant developer issue - the huge lack of parking being constructed at almost every commercial project in town. Quite often they pay a charge to Council for the missing parking spaces, and yet Council never builds any additional parking, instead pumping the cash into the general slush fund.

    Look around town and see all the projects with little parking - Cazaly's is doubling in size, virtually no parking.

    Smithfield added 50% in size and just recently approved five movie theaters, no increase in parking.

    These projects are all over town, and their legacy is poorly working commercial facilities but massive profits for developers who only build part of a project, and don't invest in the proper support facilities.

    T. Lords
    North Cairns


Anonymous said...

More proof that no-one gives a stuff about the customer anymore.
And that is because the "customer" the average Aussie is a passive, compliant consumer who has a bit of a whinge and does nothing.
Another case in point recently:-
The "survey" wherein a majority of Aussies reckon the airlines should charge "obese" people more for seating.
Anyone who has ever flown would know that the seats are too damned narrow and small as the airlines cram people in like packed sardines!!
Aussies should be demanding bigger and wider seats with more leg room, not passively agreeing that bigger people should "pay more".

Anonymous said...

To add to T. Lord's comments...

It is not only commercial or retail developments that are given dispensations on parking. All these new unit blocks going up on every Cairns street are supposed to have 2 car spaces and yet only one is provided for.

Along Clifton Road, about 400 units are currently going in with only half the required parking spaces. Assuming every unit owner will have two cars, this means that the overflow (400 cars) will have no where else to park but on the road.
Clifton Road is one of only two access points for this suburb, it is a narrow two way street and is a bus route. It will be hell for residents, pedestrians, and motorists alike!
And who do we thank for this mess........Council/Bonneau

Anonymous said...

To add to northernbeaches warrior.....will this mean emergency vehicles will have hell trying to navigate the streets?
Something should be done NOW if that is the case.

Anonymous said...

Oh boo freakin hoo. Welcome to the real world. Car parking isn't just something you can throw money at and BAM... it's fixed.

Cities grow - and if the original by-laws are maintained when a property has had more development then you're going to find that parking is more of a problem. Think it's easy to find a park in Sydney?

There are other avenues that can help alleviate density issues ie: public transport / car pooling, just as one example.

Bigger plane seats? Haha! I'd like to see that! Shouldn't there come a time in every persons life where they look at themselves, overweight, riddled with cellulite and straining to do everyday chores, that they should really do something about their size?

Oh - don't get me started on fat people. Well, the ones that could have stopped it anyway.

That is all.

Anonymous said...

re Anon's comments about comparing Cairns's parking situation with that of Sydney is a silly one.

To start with you are comparing a Australia's largest city with a population of over 5 million people with Cairns - according to 2006 Census Cairns has a popn approx 127,000. There is something wrong when in a city of this size, we city workers have to park and walk more than 3 blocks to our work/car. Not that I always mind the walk but when it is 37 degrees, pouring with rain or unsafe to do so, then I would rather NOT! With all the units going up in town, and 50% of all resident parking flowing out into the streets, it is only going to get worse.

Sydney also has a variety of very good secondary transport modes, bus and rail and ferry so there are other options for the commuters. Cairns does not and obviously alot more infrastructure, more appropriate, and improved service needs to happen for this to become a reality here.
Cairns is choking now with cars!!!!!!!!!!!!

As for emergency vehicles, in some constructions like the Clifton Cottages at Clifton Beach, they would not be even able to enter the narrow one car-width entrance and negotiate a dog-leg turn in the centre to more than 20 units. Surely, this must be illegal, as it could cost someone their life if the ambulance or fire engine could not reach their Unit in time!
Another irresponsible mess caused by bad planning and dispensations given to developers! It saves the developers heaps not having to provide for the extra parking, but it is our residents and community that pay a high price for this situation.

Anonymous said...

Re public transport: There is an underused railway line going South to Gordonvale and out to Redlynch.
Why residents haven't screamed out for a rail commuter service, I don't know.

Anonymous said...

There should be one car space for each bedroom in unit / apartment development. The developers paying the CCC a virtual bribe to not have a space should be made available to preserve the amenity we should all enjoy an uncrowded road system as we possibly can

Anonymous said...

I am sure Council are concerned about access for Emergency Vehicles, that is why they insist that Argentea and Ocean's Edge Developments have 4 metre cycle paths cut through bush and over waterways (sorry drainage easements. The parking problem is going to be huge once all the Clifton Beach Detention Units are completed. No point in people thinking they can make use of the Clifton Village Car park either, that has less carparks than the plan says as well.

Anonymous said...

I am sure Council are concerned about access for Emergency Vehicles, that is why they insist that Argentea and Ocean's Edge Developments have 4 metre cycle paths cut through bush and over waterways (sorry drainage easements. The parking problem is going to be huge once all the Clifton Beach Detention Units are completed. No point in people thinking they can make use of the Clifton Village Car park either, that has less carparks than the plan says as well.

Anonymous said...

Reading through all these comments, it is patently obvious there is a HUGE PROBLEM. So, who are the coming Council candidates for Clifton Beach and the inner Cairns Central Business district?
Come on, do your stuff, get out there and hammer the current Council.

Anonymous said...

I have been asking to get a commuter train on that unused southern track for a couple of years... and the Tablelands track too.
Not just a once a day tourist trip but a proper commuter service for locals.
This service would not only help workers and shoppers either, as so many elderly Tableland and Innisfail region people need to come to Cairns for medical reasons ect and have to rely on friends and family to drive them to appointments that have little parking spots near by and wait hours before returning home sometimes in the dark.
What frustrates me most is this is something they could fix tomorrow if they wanted to because the line is already there.
This would benefit the Environment,traffic flows and parking as well as be a good start in getting some real infrastructure into Cairns for the the locals. Why nobody is interested in this simple solution is beyond me!!

Anonymous said...

Kazba is right...there needs to be some surveys taken to assess the patronage of a train commuter service. Also to look at laying down some track to some of the Northern Beaches.

Anonymous said...

I just hope Kathy Plath doesn't get in for the city in March.

Anonymous said...

Kathy? Oh come on! Mrs Plath has been in retirement mode ever since she started with the Unity Team! There is only a very select few councillors that actually do any work out there. Maybe we should start a war on councillors...? After all, they're OUR say in local government.

Tony Hillier said...

Right, so it's time to elect a fresh council, primarily a new mayor! Cairns is crying out for a changing of the guard at this critical stage in its evolution. Disgruntled citizens must get off their fat arses and help get some new faces elected early next year. We must not beware the ides of March!

Anonymous said...

Reading the Blue Water Glossy leaflet in Saturday's Cairns Post leaves no doubt that Councillor Bonneau has well and truly nailed his colours to the Development mast. It will be interesting to see how this councillor votes at this weeks council meeting on the MATERIAL CHANGE OF USE (IMPACT ASSESSMENT) - MULTI-UNIT HOUSING (153 UNITS IN A TALL BUILDING) – MOORE ROAD, KEWARRA BEACH"
Is this the first of the Northern Beaches "Gold Coast" high rises that we were told would never happen. Of course we the public/ratepayers only ever get one day'snotice of the details of the proposal. This is what we are told is "open and transparent" governance

Anonymous said...

Re Moore Road Developement
Don't you mean that Bonneau will
a) propose the motion to approve
b) everyone will do the "nodding" thing and the development gets the rubber stamp treatment. There is generally no discussion, next approval....

I cannot remember the last time Bonneua did not support an application......why should this one be any different?

The Essence of Good Taste said...

If you are unhappy change it - read stand for Councillor yourself. If you are not prepared to change it, then stop whinging. Simple.

And as far as I know, it is not just Council's staff who park in Central (although some might)it is office workers throughout the CBD. And why wouldn't you - free, undercover, secure parking. As someone who regularly shops at Central at 9am because it is quiet and I can get out quickly, the parking is definitely not being used by shoppers at this time.

Easy solution. Put a boom gate on the entrance, as long as you spend at Central and show the docket on leaving, the parking is free...

Anonymous said...

Cairns Parking !
Have any of you people looked at the amendments to the CairnsPlan in relation to parking? Dictator KB has yet again rolled over and allowed his oversized belly to be scratched in gratitude by developers. The parking place requirement for holiday or Resort Accommodation as is preferable for these people has been further reduced and will eventually cause ‘major’ headaches for residents. Reasoning; as these resorts age thus loosing their appeal they are sold off to individuals as has happened with the old Ramada at Palm Cove. Was there an increase in parking requirement? Was there a reduction in room allocation to arrest any inconsistencies with parking? Hell NO! its $after $after $ and with not a Town Planner gives a hoot!
Read the amendments to the CairnsPlan and see what you find, you’ll be amazed as to what they’re getting away with!!!
Merry Xmas folks.

Anonymous said...

Looks like there is a legitimate issue to be tackled in the Council elections. This simply cannot go on. The whole issue of parking and public transport needs addressing seriously.