Revitalising city centres
THE prohibitive time and costs associated with planning applications for new business ventures will be slashed in a bid to breathe fresh life into town centres and high streets suffocated by unnecessary red tape.
Planning Minister Rita Saffioti outlined a six-point plan this week to realise the economic potential of empty buildings in areas, such as the Victoria Park cafe strip and developing Canning City Centre.
It comes in the midst of a campaign by The West Australian and Community News highlighting the unnecessary council red tape holding back business owners across the state.
Ms Saffioti also wants greater collaboration between councils to develop uniform planning policies along arterial roads and train lines, such as the Armadale line.
Priority has been given to dismantling the bureaucratic council systems that can take up to 90 days – and cost in excess of $10,000 in consultancy fees – for routine ‘change of use’ applications for commercial properties.
Ms Saffioti wants those processing times cut to just seven days.
“This is a key issue that is raised with me all the time,” Ms Saffioti said.
She is also proposing trimming the number of planning zones across WA about 70 per cent, from 1000 to closer to 300.
The number of development assessment panels could also be cut from nine to three.