Face it, you’re age­ing

The West Australian - - PROPERTY - He­len Shield

We’re all get­ting older but, oddly, as we grap­ple with the plan­ning and af­ford­able hous­ing is­sues plagu­ing Perth, it seems there are many peo­ple in de­nial about this fact.

As we age there are a cou­ple of un­com­fort­able truths we won’t be able to es­cape:

There is a short­age of hous­ing for those less mo­bile;

The cost of care and buy­ing in sup­port ser­vices is high;

And tran­si­tion be­tween hous­ing types is pro­hib­i­tive be­cause of stamp duty costs.

Aged-care ad­vis­ers Ansell Strate­gic says Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment pre­dic­tions in­di­cate we need 84,000 new aged-care beds in the next decade at a cost of $35 bil­lion-plus. It warns that, across the coun­try, we are

fall­ing be­hind on these tar­gets but that nowhere is this more acute than in WA.

Some of the more trou­bling is­sues arise when aged-care providers seek­ing to ad­dress this des­per­ate short­age are stonewalled by nearby, in­tractably op­posed res­i­dents.

In a saner time, we might have wel­comed these much-needed de­vel­op­ments into our com­mu­nity.

There is an ar­gu­ment that if a well-de­signed aged-care de­vel­op­ment has leapt the de­sign ad­vi­sory com­mit­tee hur­dles and com­plies with the town plan­ning scheme it should be ap­proved. Pe­riod.

But as the Plan­ning Min­is­ter Rita Saf­fi­oti seeks out an aged-care de­vel­oper for a plum site in Clare­mont, other in­ner-city aged-care de­vel­op­ments have ei­ther been knocked back or de­layed.

Rose­wood made sub­stan­tial mod­i­fi­ca­tions to its $74 mil­lion, 152-bed aged-care home in Cleaver Street, West Perth. Those de­lays, which in­cluded sub­stan­tial me­di­a­tion, came at a con­sid­er­able cost.

Aged and com­mu­nity-care provider South­care will ap­peal against a de­ci­sion to re­ject its 82-dwelling de­vel­op­ment at Bick­ley Cres­cent, Man­ning.

No mat­ter what the out­come, it is trou­bling that a pro­posal to pro­vide a vi­tal ser­vice that com­plies with the plan­ning rules can be dis­carded be­cause the voices of less than a dozen res­i­dents drown out the needs of hun­dreds of vul­ner­a­ble, older peo­ple search­ing for bet­ter hous­ing so­lu­tions.

South­care’s Bick­ley Cres­cent plan has been re­jected.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.