New housing strategies needed

Cr Rachel Pemberton used last week’s Finance, Policy, Operations and Legislation Committee meeting to put forward a proposal asking the City to form an innovative housing working group, which would focus on providing guidelines for more affordable and sustainable housing in Fremantle. She said it was hoped innovation and diversity could be facilitated, not forced.

“WA has some of the largest and most expensive housing in the world,” she said.

“This working group will look at methods that could facilitate smaller, more efficient and affordable homes that suit the needs and lifestyle of many people in Fremantle.

“The key goal is to make sure that key workers like nurses, teachers and people who work in retail and hospitality can live here, near their workplace.

“It is also important that we maintain our diversity and character, which means ensuring single parents, artists, people with a disability, young people and older people can afford to live here.”

She said small-scale developments like the Green Swing in Victoria Park, Ecoburbia or Germany’s form of co-operative housing Baugruppen could be something that worked in Fremantle.

“Baugruppen, or building groups, are formed by people assisted to come together to finance, design, construct and purchase the buildings they will live in,” she said.

“They become the developers of their own medium density housing.

“The City needs to ensure that new development is high quality, sustainable and retains much of the precious tree and vegetation cover in order to achieve the Green Plan target of 20 per cent tree cover by 2020.”

The item will go before full council tomorrow night.