2018 candidate for Town of Gawler.
Heritage survey responses.
Do you agree that the identification and protection of local heritage places is best done by local councils rather than DPTI (Department of Planning, Transport and Infrastructure)?
Yes. The current process where DPTI or Minister have an effective veto has clearly been causing issues over recent years. At the same time there should be consistent criteria applied by councils.
In your opinion, has the current system of local heritage protection served your community well?
Yes quite well although the process of amending or updating the listings is much too onerous. Gawler Council has not updated its listings since 2000. There were matters put aside then which could be dealt with when a review occurred.
Should councils reject proposals to list local places of historic merit simply because an owner objects?
No - assessments should be based on merit.
Should neighbours of local heritage listed buildings have a right of appeal on development applications that propose demolition?
For Gawler Council demolition of an individual Local Heritage Place is Non-complying and will generally be category 3 with general third party appeal rights. Local heritage listed contributory places are less protected with only policy prescription stating that they should not be demolished, should be retained etc. Contributory places are the basis for Historic Conservation Zones. The basis for these zones is overall heritage character and streetscapes. It is appropriate that the rights of other residents in the area are protected by allowing appeal rights - not just for neighbours.
Should buildings listed as Contributory Items in your council area receive better protection?
Yes - non-complying and with appeal rights. And clearer development and protection policies. Everyone benefits from maintaining high value heritage character in designated areas. It is not right that some are allowed to take advantage of that value to sell inappropriate infill development essentially at the expense of the rest of the neighbourhood.
Do you agree that places proposed for listing by your council as Local Heritage or Contributory Items should be subject to review by DPTI? Or would reviews be more appropriately conducted by an independent source of expert advice?
heritage listing should be based on merit. DPTI itself could have people employed to do this but it seems the process has been politicised. Having an essentially political review process is contrary to good planning principles which require consistency and a reasonable level of certainty. There is also an economic benefit from consistency and certainty.
Would you like to see your council work more closely with the National Trust of SA in protecting heritage, for example, by signing up as one of the Trust's Civic Partners?
Possibly depending on what the partnership involves.
What are your personal suggestions for improving the way your council handles policy and planning?
Ensuring that adequate professional review occurs when engineering reports are presented stating that buildings don't comply with current standards or have engineering deficiencies. There seems to be some shopping around related to obtaining advice about the condition of buildings and structures. A panel of engineers and others experienced in managing heritage buildings should be established.
Should councils actively encourage individuals to nominate places for consideration as local heritage?
That did occur in 1997/98 when Gawler conducted heritgae DPAs.No reason why it cannot occur now. Local knowledge is vital in identifying local heritage - some of it being now fairly hidden.