Land should be leased, not sold

A forensic officer examines the Hubert Street property where a man was allegedly murdered. Picture: Matthew Poon www.communitypix.com.au d400340
A forensic officer examines the Hubert Street property where a man was allegedly murdered. Picture: Matthew Poon www.communitypix.com.au d400340

THERE has been much debate about Elizabeth Quay, with the Liberal and Labor parties squabbling about how tall the buildings at the development should be.

The real issue, which I am surprised no one is debating, is that Elizabeth Quay is being built on an A-class reserve for recreation.

This prime riverfront land is being sold at below market value to private developers.

The sale of public assets stimulates the economy in the short term. The land is free and the Elizabeth Quay development will create 3300 jobs during the construction phase.

I am excited about development and growth happening in the city, but believe we should not sell public land and any development should be leased to the tenant, such as happens with the cafes, restaurants and shops at Kings Park and Hillarys.

We are currently planning for the next hundred years and beyond.

The Gardens by the Bay in Singapore is an example of a government planning for a sustainable future, and Xiamen in China, the host of this year’s finals of the 2013 International Awards for Liveable Communities, has vast green areas up to the water’s edge. Both have robust economies.

And much as I would hate the stadium to move from Subiaco, Elizabeth Quay would be a much better venue for it than next to the casino.

Fans wouldn’t have to change trains as all rail lines converge in Perth.

It would save the cost of developing the railway station at Burswood and stimulate the economy in the inner city on match days as it does in Subiaco.

Then, well into the future, when that use becomes no longer relevant, the land would still be publicly owned and the next generation will benefit from their inheritance as we did when the land was first classed as a public reserve.

Josie Speight,

Ellenbrook