Iacomella: Metronet a catalyst

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Metronet will create jobs and provide development opportunities for affordable housing along transport corridors says Transport Minister Rita Saffioti.

THE WA property industry approves of the state government’s drive to use Metronet, including the rail extension to Yanchep, as a catalyst for economic growth.

Property Council WA executive director Lino Iacomella said it was promising the see such commitment and drive from the government to deliver positive outcomes for Western Australians while involving industry and using Metronet as a catalyst for economic growth.

His comments followed a speech by Planning Minister Rita Saffioti at an industry lunch hosted by the Property Council of Australia, where she said the government was committed to delivering Metronet to create jobs and provide development opportunities for affordable housing along transport corridors.

But Ms Saffioti said the government was in no hurry to pass legislation and would rather spend the time ensuring any new legislation delivered the desired outcomes through thorough public and industry consultation.

For example, any legislation aimed at improving quality, must not increase construction costs, as this would have a negative effect on affordability and viability of projects.

Mr Iacomella said it was imperative local planning frameworks allowed the creation of urban centres fed by new and redeveloped stations.

“Ensuring land-use opportunities are optimized, to increase residential populations is essential and will provide the perfect opportunity for local governments to meet their infill targets,’’ he said.

Mr Iacomella said Ms Saffioti said strata reform would be passed in mid-2018, and would be a key factor in the governments plans to address housing affordability.

He said strata reform would allow future mixed-use developments that would become thriving social hubs, with housing, retail and commercial uses.

“The state overnment should be commended on embracing the work originated by the previous government and driving the reforms forward.’’

Meanwhile, late last month the state government showcased a range of LandCorp’s commercial, residential and industrial projects available for investment across metropolitan and regional areas.

Ms Saffioti said development around the rail extension to Yanchep was expected to open up development opportunities at Alkimos Central.

“The Alkimos Central precinct is currently in its planning stage as a new activity centre around the future Metronet rail and bus station opening in 2021,’’ she said.

The Alkimos project is expected to be released to market in 2018.

“Future development opportunities will also become available for major transformational projects such as the Ocean Reef marina, which will create a thriving new recreation and tourism precinct in Perth’s north,’’ she said.