Newsletter - August 2013

General Meeting
All residents are invited to a GENERAL MEETING
Tuesday 8th October 2013 at 7.30 pm
St Peters Youth Centre
2 Cornish Street Stepney

Topic: Residential Development and Quality of Life
Guest Speaker: Steven Marshall, Member for Norwood

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The Past Year
Our Association has continued to make submissions to Council on new development proposals and issues of concern.

We have worked with other inner suburban residents associations to lobby against undesirable aspects of new residential development re-zonings, particularly multi-storey residential development in inappropriate places. Unfortunately we have not succeeded in getting an active committee up and running due to most people being too busy to become involved. This is a weakness which we are keen to overcome.

Our biggest effort went into advising residents in Hackney, Evandale and St Peters of proposed zoning changes to allow multi-storey flats under the Residential Development (Zones and Policy Areas) Development Plan Amendment. We leafleted these suburbs just after last Christmas. With the help of more volunteers we also leafleted parts of Felixstowe, Firle and Marden in the former Payneham Council area. Our greatest concern was that many residents were largely unaware of new development Council was intending to allow in their streets as Council had not notified them of these impending changes. Many thanks to the committee members and volunteers who helped with this letter-boxing work.

Due to the ensuing public outcry, Council decided to write to everyone in the affected areas to notify them that rezoning changes were being considered. Council received over 200 submissions on the proposed changes. This was a splendid public response and showed the depth of community concerns.

A local resident helped us set up a Website for SPRA at

This has improved our accessibility to the public and we have gained new members in the past year. We have been able to communicate more with our membership by email recently. This has been a great improvement on the once a year paper Newsletter put in people’s letter-boxes. However not everyone is on-line and we feel that it is important to reach out to all residents in the areas of the former St Peters Council in an annual Newsletter letter-box drop to let you know what we have been doing. Please send an email to if you would like to be added to the email list.

Residential Development (Zones and Policy Areas) DPA

Many residents living near the Linear Park in areas up for rezoning from high-quality R1 garden suburbs to a new River Torrens Linear Park Medium Density Policy Area are greatly concerned by the proposed rezoning. Loss of existing garden character and diminished quality of life, extra people, loss of open space and trees, more noise and traffic, over-looking and over-shadowing, less safety for children and families, greater pollution of the River Torrens from run-off and the lack of good public transport and shopping facilities within walking distance were among the many reasons residents gave for their concerns about multi-storey flats being built in their streets.

There was also concern among many Hackney residents that the old Sanitarium site would be sold off for 3-storey flats and the Caravan Park in Richmond Street would become an area of 6 storey flats.

Other rezoning proposals include reclassifying some areas in Hackney, Evandale and Stepney as “Residential Mixed Character Zones”. This rezoning will allow many more dense housing redevelopments to occur in these areas. This issue has not received much publicity.

Council will hold a meeting on the 23rd of September next at 7.00 pm in the Norwood Concert Hall to present to residents options for meeting the State Government’s expectation of new housing targets in our Council area while trying to address some of the concerns of local residents. All residents who care about the quality of life in our suburbs should make an effort to come along to this meeting. We believe that not all concerns will be addressed and it is important that residents speak up at this meeting.

The Parade and Kent Town DPA

Our Association made a submission to the proposed rezoning of parts of The Parade and Kent Town. We suggested that a maximum height of 3-4 storeys would be more suited to The Parade rather than the 7-storeys proposed, as a lower height would be more in keeping with the historical village character of The Parade. The Committee empowered to approved planning changes voted to keep the 7-storeys but imposed greater set-backs of new buildings from The Parade as well as slightly scaled-down building heights at the outer edges of new buildings to reduce impacts on adjacent buildings.

Our submission also expressed concern about allowing 10-storey flats to be built on the southern side of North Terrace, Kent Town, between the Maid and Magpie Corner and the Parklands, as well as allowing 10-storey development on the Banner Hardware site on the corner of Magill and Fullarton Roads Norwood. We supported the Norwood Residents Association position that new residential development in Kent Town should be limited to 5-storeys. In its written submission to Council, even the Property Council expressed reservations about building multi-storey apartments on North Terrace due to heavy traffic. There are major health hazards in housing people on major arterial roads and near busy intersections, but State planning authorities are ignoring these risks. Council’s Committee has now voted for 10-storey flats to be permitted on North Terrace Kent Town and the Banner Hardware site.

Community Alliance
A new community group has now sprung up which is dedicated to making the planning system more democratic. Over 30 community and residents’ groups have joined this Alliance. In April this organization held a meeting in the Norwood Town Hall to discuss concerns about the planning system. Over 200 people attended, along with several politicians including Planning Minister John Rau and Opposition Planning spokeswoman Vickie Chapman.

St. Peters Civic Centre - Library & Heritage Centre

We are pleased that the St. Peters Civic Centre has now re-opened, following a substantial and lengthy upgrade. The new facilities are functioning well and the spacious and attractive surroundings of the Library and the new History Centre are appreciated by the community. Improvements to the landscaping and paving at this end of St. Peters Street are being planned by Council. The entire length of the median strip in St. Peters Street has been badly neglected over the past 10 years and is crying out for improvement. Council will shortly be going out to Public Consultation for proposals to upgrade St Peters Street between Payneham Rd and Second Lane. Consultation will close about the 20th September.

Bell’s Plumber’s Shop
The sad saga of this State Heritage place continues. Despite the best efforts of the owner to have this building consigned to a pile of dust, the shop continues to stand – just. We are at a loss to fathom out why the State Government, which has power under the Heritage Act to impose a hefty fine on the owner for the wilful neglect of a State Heritage Place, is too lily-livered to act. Protecting heritage places does not appear to be high on the agenda of the government, particularly as its Minister for Sustainability and Heritage regularly over-rules recommendations of the State Heritage Committee on places which should be protected from demolition.

This shop was built in 1883 by John Colton and Thomas Miller. John Colton was a leading colonial Methodist who went on to become Premier of this State. The shop was sold to David Bell, plumber and gasfitter, who emigrated from Scotland. His family was born in an attached residence at the back of the shop. The property was owned by the Bell family for over 100 years. In 1984 it was made a State Heritage Place. This locality contains an important group of State Heritage buildings including the Maid and Magpie Hotel and the Bon Marche Building. Residents are urged to contact Minister Ian Hunter to urge action on Bell’s Plumber’s Shop, a local disgrace. The Minister can be contacted by phone 8463 5680 or mail at 9th Floor, Chesser House, 91 Grenfell Street Adelaide or on

St Peters Women’s Community Centre
This Centre at 64 Nelson Street Stepney has served the women of Adelaide for over 40 years. We are pleased to learn that the Centre has been nominated for State Heritage listing on cultural grounds. If successful, this would give this historic cottage protection from future destruction. As well it would be a fitting tribute to the work of generations of women who have dedicated themselves to improving the lot of vulnerable women. It was only a few years ago that our Council voted to knock the Women’s Centre down. Thankfully this decision was reversed after a huge community backlash. The Centre has been nominated for State Heritage listing before, but Council was strongly opposed to this on the grounds that the Centre did not have cultural heritage importance outside the local area. If any residents know of anyone associated with setting up the Centre in the early 1970s, we would be glad to receive any information. We will be making a submission in support of the nomination. Submissions can be sent to the State Heritage Committee up until 30th of October. For more details see –
SA Heritage Register Nominations