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Franklin P&C to fight housing proposal

By Charlotte Harper - 2 December 2015 20

Franklin Proposal

Franklin residents are rallying to fight for community land behind their Early Childhood School as the government flags the possibility of using it for public housing instead of reserving it for the school’s possible future expansion.

Franklin Early Childhood School P&C President Amy Thomas contacted RiotACT today to ask us to publish the below letter encouraging Gungahlin residents to attend a meeting at Gungahlin Library on December 9 about the public housing proposal.

She told RiotACT members of the school community are very upset about the lack of consultation about the public housing plan, and expressed dismay upon learning of it at a P&C meeting last night.

“For a lot of people attending the meeting, it was the first they had heard about the proposal,” she said.

“We haven’t been involved in the consultation process. Several residents who lived very close to the proposed sites did not receive the Public Housing notice, yet other residents did. We have been lobbying to extend the early childhood school and want this land set aside to build more school.”

Gungahlin residents can learn more on the ‘Franklin Early Childhood School. Where to next for Franklin?’ community Facebook page and sign a petition at Change.org here.

Ms Thomas’s full letter to residents follows:

Please attend the

FRANKLIN Public Housing Proposal Public Viewing
Wednesday 9 December 2015
HAVE YOUR SAY
5.30-6.30pm @ Gungahlin Library
(Corner of Hibberson and Gozzard streets, Gungahlin)

Dear Parents and Carers,

Franklin Early Childhood School (FECS) opened in 2013 as an early childhood schooling option for Gungahlin children. Early Childhood Schools in Canberra are not intended to have priority enrolment areas, however due to enrolment pressure on surrounding schools, FECS is now operating almost exclusively for Franklin residents only. This means that residents of other Gungahlin suburbs no longer have an early childhood schooling option and residents of Franklin have a primary school that continues only to year two.

This does not meet either the needs of the Gungahlin region or the needs of Franklin FECS P&C would like to acknowledge a letter from the Public Housing Renewal Taskforce sent out to Franklin residents only. The public has been invited to attend a display of the proposed plans with Taskforce staff. It is important for as many people to attend so that residents of the Gungahlin region and members of the community understand the implications of using the specified land surrounding FECS for anything other than educational purposes. It will have a direct effect on the residents of Franklin, the surrounding suburbs and their schooling choices. It has an effect on both private and public education systems.

In summary, the Public Renewal Taskforce have plans to build 29 public housing apartments either directly behind FECS or in between the school and the new Franklin Recreation Park, when this land has been zoned for community use.

We have been lobbying to keep the same early childhood model, but to use the surrounding land to cater for years 3-6.

The P&C believe this land should be used for educational and community purposes to cater well to the Gungahlin region.

We strongly encourage the residents of Gungahlin suburbs to attend this meeting in support of our community and the education of our children. We also strongly encourage you to email housingrenewal@act.gov.au to have your say.

Kind Regards,

Amy Thomas

FECS P&C President
franklin.parents.and.citizens@gmail.com

 

What’s Your opinion?


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20 Responses to
Franklin P&C to fight housing proposal
rommeldog56 10:44 pm 08 Dec 15

TuggLife said :

29 apartments doesn’t seem like an excessively large development to me. As with any public housing, it seems like it’s a good idea for the housing to be geographically close to services, because a lack of access to transport and services is likely to exacerbate disadvantage.

At least this objection lacks the open bigotry we saw from Nicholls residents in May regarding the proposal for public housing close to Gold Creek School.

I am not convinced of the Franklin P&C’s grievance relating to the lack of consultation, when they are being provided with exactly that – an open opportunity to provide input into the proposal.

A word to the wise to Amy and the P&C, though – it is very difficult to publicly raise these objections without appearing predjudiced towards those experiencing disadvantage (and, less politely, a NIMBY concerned about their own house value.) The Franklin P&C flyer acknowledge that some of the residents may have children attend their school – I hope they are welcoming to the new pupils, and that the pupils don’t find out how hard their own school’s P&C lobbied to keep them away.

After all, there, but for the grace of God, go I.

That’s pretty good – in the one post, NIMBY and BIGOTRY used to describe anyone who dares to raise a voice in opposition – anyone who dares to seek to protect the value of their greatest asset, their house – anyone who dares to want to defend urban open spaces instead of giving them up to developers, etc.

Yeah – well done.

TuggLife 2:46 pm 08 Dec 15

29 apartments doesn’t seem like an excessively large development to me. As with any public housing, it seems like it’s a good idea for the housing to be geographically close to services, because a lack of access to transport and services is likely to exacerbate disadvantage.

At least this objection lacks the open bigotry we saw from Nicholls residents in May regarding the proposal for public housing close to Gold Creek School.

I am not convinced of the Franklin P&C’s grievance relating to the lack of consultation, when they are being provided with exactly that – an open opportunity to provide input into the proposal.

A word to the wise to Amy and the P&C, though – it is very difficult to publicly raise these objections without appearing predjudiced towards those experiencing disadvantage (and, less politely, a NIMBY concerned about their own house value.) The Franklin P&C flyer acknowledge that some of the residents may have children attend their school – I hope they are welcoming to the new pupils, and that the pupils don’t find out how hard their own school’s P&C lobbied to keep them away.

After all, there, but for the grace of God, go I.

miz 7:32 am 08 Dec 15

Thanks JC, that’s even more worrying as it would mean they are in fact prevented from, properly salt and peppering residential public housing developments on ‘community’ zoned land? So they are getting a land grab and not complying with their own salt and pepper policies?
If so, that simply cunning and devious and, I note, proposed around Christmas which is clearly strategy in the most dodgy form. Completely unacceptable. Where is the Housing Minister on this?

JC 10:31 am 07 Dec 15

miz said :

‘Community use’ = child care centre etc, not residential, see definitions here

http://www.legislation.act.gov.au/ni/2008-27/copy/93028/pdf/2008-27.pdf

So this means the Franklin community is also losing land for community use.

Bzzt.Think you will find the Territory Plan holds the definitive definition:

The land in question is zoned CFZ: The full meaning is below.

http://www.legislation.act.gov.au/ni/2008-27/copy/96341/pdf/2008-27.pdf

See first page objective e.

“e) To encourage adaptable and affordable housing for persons in need of residential support or
care.”

Then go down further for a more complete list of what is and isn’t allowed, see supportive housing, that’s government housing, also know as social housing etc. So very much allowed.

What isn’t allowed is a (commercial) residential development among other things, but government housing is well within the definition.

miz 10:14 am 06 Dec 15

‘Community use’ = child care centre etc, not residential, see definitions here

http://www.legislation.act.gov.au/ni/2008-27/copy/93028/pdf/2008-27.pdf

So this means the Franklin community is also losing land for community use.

miz 7:59 am 05 Dec 15

The problem is twofold:
1. they claim to salt and pepper public housing. If they were, this development would be a mix of public and private. It doesn’t appear to be.
2. public housing tenants used to be a mix of seriously disadvantaged (complex problems) and working poor (without complex problems). Over the years S/T governments have been forced, through tied money, to restrict eligibility to the seriously disadvantaged, so pockets of public housing are more likely to be troublesome.
I asked Mr Barr on 666 CM talkback whether the new public housing on the Chisholm High School was going to be salt and peppered. He said ‘no.’ I was, and remain, appalled, as there is clearly an agenda to relocate trouble but no care to do it well.
I’m afraid that Ms Berry is unlikely to have much say in it – in all my past dealings with Housing I found them incredibly arrogant as they deal with disempowered people and don’t have to give two hoots what they think.

JC 7:28 pm 04 Dec 15

trudi said :

Haven’t we got enough social housing in Franklin already? I am referring to those 2 to 3 bedroom/single garage micro sized starter houses. Surely, if the ACT government wishes to bring public housing tenants to Franklin (aaargh!), all they have to do is buy a few of those. Add some units and townhouses that are already lining Flemington Road in Harrison and Franklin instead of creating a slum next to the early childhood school! At least this is how other States are purchasing public housing accommodation, by spreading their properties randomly in suburbs at the PLANNING stage! I have lived in many cities and towns across Australia and wherever you have a condensation of public housing, you have a slum and a no-go zone within a short period of time.

That’s exactly what they are doing. The land has always been zoned community use from the planning stage and community use includes social housing.

Lazy I 6:48 pm 04 Dec 15

Good luck!

This looks almost identical to the approach used by the Government in Chapman and Rivett. In both instances ‘community’ green spaces were replaced with high density public housing.

The exact same wording/approach that was used, specifically that the housing would be for those with a disability and the ageing population.. this is just a just a cover, and once the dust has settled you will get a nice cross section of residents.

For the Chapman/Rivett proposal there was such a huge reaction from residents that the venue for the public consultation was standing room only.. but it didn’t matter anyway, the ‘consultation’ was merely a formality and the bulldozers were rolling by that stage.

Who needs parkland anyway?

http://www.wccc.com.au/public-housing-rushed-through/

trudi 5:42 pm 04 Dec 15

Haven’t we got enough social housing in Franklin already? I am referring to those 2 to 3 bedroom/single garage micro sized starter houses. Surely, if the ACT government wishes to bring public housing tenants to Franklin (aaargh!), all they have to do is buy a few of those. Add some units and townhouses that are already lining Flemington Road in Harrison and Franklin instead of creating a slum next to the early childhood school! At least this is how other States are purchasing public housing accommodation, by spreading their properties randomly in suburbs at the PLANNING stage! I have lived in many cities and towns across Australia and wherever you have a condensation of public housing, you have a slum and a no-go zone within a short period of time.

JC 10:55 am 04 Dec 15

Lack of consultation, isn’t the flyer consultation? Isn’t the invite to the meeting next Wednesday consultation? Then when they decide on a site they will then submit plans for public comment. What more do you want?

Also the P&C is kind of wrong if they think the government is stealing land from the school for this development. The school wasn’t ever planned to be bigger and the land around the school is zoned for community use, which could include an expansion of the school, but by the same token it could also be used for social housing (as being proposed) as well as a whole raft of other community uses, building of a church or mosque for example.

rommeldog56 10:41 am 04 Dec 15

miz said :

I am hearing many people across Canberra saying ‘Welcome to my nightmare.’ The lack of consultation is so contemptuous.

If you had of heard Chief Minister Barr on Mark Parton’s talkback show on the radio this morning – and all questions being asked by listeners were about the Light Rail – he came across as distinctly arrogant, contemptuous and dismissive of callers concerns. I have no idea how voters in the ACT can put up with this sort of attitude. So, you will get more of that if u vote for it at the next ACT LA election, I’m afraid.

wildturkeycanoe 6:37 am 04 Dec 15

Who owns the land? The government. Who gets to say what gets built there? The government. Did they consult the community about closing schools across Canberra many years ago? Not enough to make a difference. I don’t see the problem. Having public housing near a school isn’t terrible, there are units adjacent schools everywhere in the A.C.T and hasn’t turned the kids into beer drinking, pot smoking lowlifes. So the school thought the land was theirs…ha, ha, ha. Nobody owns the land in Canberra, the pollies can choose to do what they want with it, when they want. When there’s money to be made [29 units raking in rates as opposed to a soccer field], public opinion does not hold much weight in the debate.
Perhaps this is part of the medium density, green space corridor plan that is the future of the tramway? More houses, less trees and grass. Very green.

miz 6:30 pm 03 Dec 15

I am hearing many people across Canberra saying ‘Welcome to my nightmare.’ The lack of consultation is so contemptuous.

No_Nose 11:48 am 03 Dec 15

bd84 said :

It’s a major concern that the ACT Government has binned their policy about not creating pockets of disadvantage with high concentrations of public housing in multi-unit developments and are now just building new ones.

It’s amazing how quickly the lessons learnt from Burnie Court have been forgotten.

bd84 9:15 am 03 Dec 15

It’s a major concern that the ACT Government has binned their policy about not creating pockets of disadvantage with high concentrations of public housing in multi-unit developments and are now just building new ones.

What was originally stated to be developments for the elderly or disabled, which is fine, has now turned into a free for all with the intent of moving the areas of disadvantage from the high value land near the city to sell the land for the tram and just ditch them in a clump in the suburbs.

The policy of a scattered public housing portfolio, plus no more than 10% per suburb was a very good policy, but now means nothing as the only aim is to make money on the sale of the old blocks.

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