The LNP Brisbane City Council and the Labor state government teamed up in August 2023 to approve the Kurilpa Temporary Local Planning Instrument (TLPI), a planning tool that allows for buildings as high as 90 storeys around the northern end of West End and South Brisbane.
You can read the TLPI here.
The TLPI overrides the City Plan for a large chunk of the Kurilpa Peninsula, pushing up building height limits to 30, 50, or even up to 'unspecified' heights - which means as high as aviation limits allow, around 90 storeys.
Sadly, despite the amazing job that local groups like Kurilpa Futures - Planning for People and West End Community Association did fighting back against this proposal, and getting hundreds of dissenting submissions to the Deputy Premier, Labor went ahead and ticked off on the TLPI anyway.
The Deputy Premier carried out two weeks of consultation with the community, and despite widespread opposition, went ahead and approved the TLPI. This is deeply undemocratic, and yet another example of how the Labor government does not care about community consutlation, or the needs of local communities.
Both the LNP City Council and the Labor state government have justified the TLPI on the basis that it will help ease the housing crisis. Council and the State Government also have seemingly no plan to invest in the public infrastructure we need for a growing population.
Willl the TLPI help ease the housing crisis?
The council and the state government have argued that new developments will bring down the cost of housing - but for West End and South Brisbane, this has not been the case. Nearly half of renting households are under housing stress in South Brisbane. In West End, almost 60 per cent of households are renting, and almost 30 per cent are in housing stress. And that’s from the 2021 census - things have only worsened since then. Many of the new developments that have been approved acorss the neighbourhood are not at all affordable, but rather, are high-end, luxury dwellings that most people can afford to buy or rent. BCC and the state government’s claims that new luxury towers will ease affordability is nothing but spin for their developer mates.
Under the TLPI, developers are being offered two options for the provision of housing (see section PO27 of the TLPI):
a) provide 20% of dwellings as 'affordable'
b) provide dwellings of different configurations and sizes, such as a combination of studios, 1 bedroom, 2 bedroom, and 3+ bedroom apartments.
When given the choice, developers are most likely going to choose the second option - a variety of different sized apartments, rather than delivering affordable dwellings. We're already seeing this, with a proposal from Stockwell on Melbourne St.
If the council and state government were serious about new developments easing the housing crisis, they'd make the provision of public housing a requirement in all new developments. They'd also cap rents.
Isn't that part of West End a flood zone?
The Kurilpa Peninsula is a flood zone - developing huge residential towers in a flood zone puts people, their goods and lives at risk.
How will this impact the community?
This community is jaded from the last decade of luxury developments that have swept through our neighbourhood. These developments have often come with the promise of new infrastructure and better housing affordability - but this has not happened. These have been blatant lies from property developers and governments.
We now have congested sidestreets and the nightmare that is Montague Road. Our schools are bursting at the seams. Our public and active transport systems are struggling to cope. And despite the claims of the Mayor and wealthy property developers, rents continue to skyrocket in the area.
What does the community really need?
- Medium-density, mixed-use developments that build communities - not break them
- More public housing
- A two-year rent freeze, followed by rent caps, to make renting affordable
- Inclusionary zoning that requires all new developments to have 25% public housing
- Expanded parkland
- Banning any new residential developments on flood plains
- More buses and ferry terminals, bike lanes and walkable streets
- Mandated requriements for meaningful community consultation for new developments
- Requring all mixed-use and multi-dwelling developments to be 'impact accessable'
- An Empty Homes levy to bring the thousands of empty homes in the neighbourhood back into the rental market