Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner has called on the State Government to ensure 30 per cent of the apartments to be constructed at Cross River Rail’s massive Woolloongabba precinct are reserved for social and affordable housing.
Cr Schrinner said the 10-hectare site adjacent to Brisbane’s famed Gabba Stadium was a unique opportunity to deliver a master-planned inner-city development with a mix of dwelling types, limited car spaces and world-class public transport options.
The Lord Mayor said he believed the site needed to include:
– A “Social and Affordable Housing Guarantee” of 30 per cent (an estimated 600 apartments).
– Priority access to affordable housing for essential workers (i.e nurses and teachers) given the site’s proximity to a large number of hospitals and schools.
– Dedicated greenspace in the heart of the development for a public park.
– A pedestrian/cycling/e-mobility link to the Woolloongabba Bikeway.
The Lord Mayor’s call for a “Social and Affordable Housing Guarantee” at the Gabba site came after the latest REIQ Residential Vacancy Report showed the Great Brisbane vacancy rate had plummeted to just one per cent.
“As property prices have grown and rental properties become harder to find, it’s clear that the State Government needs to find ways to provide more social and affordable housing,” Cr Schrinner said.
“If they are serious about dealing with housing affordability, the Woolloongabba site provides the perfect opportunity to prove it.
“My proposal will deliver about 600 social and affordable apartments just two kilometres from the Brisbane CBD on a site that will have both a train and bus station as well as a dedicated Brisbane Metro Station just a short distance away.
“This is more than double the number of new public housing properties that the State has managed to deliver across all of Queensland since 2017.
“Currently, the Cross River Rail Delivery Authority is proposing to allow only 15 per cent of the the estimated 2000 apartments to be built on this site to be social and affordable and even that’s not guaranteed.”
Cr Schrinner said the State Government’s former Urban Land Development Authority recommended in 2010 that the Woolloongabba site incorporate lower cost housing.
“A decade ago the State Government recognised that developing this location with social and affordable housing would take the pressure off our suburbs and that remains true today,” he said.
“Given the average house in the Gabba is now more than $1 million, reserving affordable housing for essential workers, like nurses and teachers who may work nearby, should be considered.”
Cr Schrinner said a strict limit on car spaces within the precinct made sense.
“Outside the city centre, this location will have the best public transport access of anywhere in Brisbane,” he said.
“Some residents will see no need to own a car. Capping car spaces would have benefits for traffic movements through this area which is only going to get more complicated when the Gabba is redeveloped for Brisbane 2032.”