Jim McKee

The Queensland Times - - NEWS -

1. When Diana and I opened Cac­tus

Espresso Bar in the her­itage listed

Bo­s­tock Cham­bers in

2003 we took care to pre­serve as much of the orig­i­nal build­ing as we could. In the Top of Town, as else­where, it is the preser­va­tion of the his­tory of the build­ings that gives them their ap­peal.

We need to en­cour­age the re-pur­pos­ing of his­toric build­ings to suit our needs with­out com­pro­mis­ing their his­tory.

2. The top down ap­proach, where Coun­cil im­poses a big new de­sign on ev­ery­one whether they like it or not, doesn't work.We need a bot­tom up ap­proach where the com­mu­nity brings their ex­per­tise to bear.

The 'Re­new New­cas­tle' model suc­cess­ful in Par­ra­matta, Gee­long, Townsville, and Ade­laide - would make a good start­ing point for our CBD. Small lo­cal busi­nesses are en­cour­aged to oc­cupy va­cant shops on a rolling monthly ba­sis. This en­cour­ages in­no­va­tion and gives start-up busi­nesses an op­por­tu­nity to try out their ideas.

3.

A. Em­ploy­ment: We need to sup­port lo­cal busi­nesses, which em­ploy more peo­ple per dol­lar of turnover than na­tional and in­ter­na­tional ones. The money they earn is ploughed back into the lo­cal econ­omy.

We need to shift the fo­cus of eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment a bit more to­wards in­dus­try and in­dus­trial de­vel­op­ment and to as­sist projects that help lo­cal busi­nesses re­alise their am­bi­tions.

B. Ur­ban plan­ning: The con­tin­u­ing de­struc­tion of farm­land and bush­land for an ever widen­ing cir­cle of hous­ing es­tates has to slow down. We need to be en­cour­ag­ing de­vel­op­ers to utilise land that al­ready has ex­ist­ing ser­vices, and we need to have planned de­vel­op­ment with guide­lines the com­mu­nity have agreed to.

C. Ac­count­abil­ity and trans­parency: I was the only can­di­date cam­paign­ing for ac­count­abil­ity and trans­parency at the last full Coun­cil elec­tion. I am pleased our new Mayor has taken this is­sue se­ri­ously. We need coun­cil­lors with the in­tegrity to call out in­ap­pro­pri­ate be­hav­iour when they see it.

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