South Australia

UDIA calls for more infrastructure coordination to deliver Government's 30-year plan

ADELAIDE'S inner city housing growth needs to be supported by adequate infrastructure upgrades, according to South Australia's peak development industry body.

In a statement last week, the Urban Development Institute of Australia (UDIA) said the State Government's intention to increase the focus on future housing developments in the CBD and inner metropolitan areas require a thorough review of existing infrastructure to determine necessary upgrades.

Adelaide CBD looking south
Above: Adelaide CBD looking south / by Jon Westra.

UDIA (SA) CEO Pat Gerace said the recently-announced draft update to the 30-Year Plan for Greater Adelaide sets new goals for inner city housing density, but warns of challenges, over the long term, without adequate planning.

"As more new homes and apartments are built in our existing suburbs, core infrastructure such as water and electricity will be placed under increased stress. It's crucial that we plan for infrastructure upgrades to cater for growth," said Mr Gerace.

"For example, two-for-one housing sub-divisions are relatively easy to manage in the short term and play an important role in maintaining choice and housing affordability for homebuyers, but as infill development continues to occur, water and power infrastructure will need to be reinforced to manage the new housing load.

"Unfortunately, we are seeing evidence of some of that infrastructure failing now, so it's critical that we have the right regulatory framework in place to address these issues now with an eye to the future."

Mr Gerace said the UDIA is playing a lead role in providing an avenue for utilities to come together and work through looming infrastructure challenges. Last month, the organisation held a 30- Year Plan Infrastructure Summit to address what needs to be done across the metropolitan area to cope with more infill development.

"These are complex issues that require coordination otherwise we'll eventually get to a tipping point where water and power infrastructure can't cope, resulting in massive replacement and upgrade costs down the track, which would ultimately be borne by homebuyers," Mr Gerace said.

In August, the State Government announced the draft update to the 30-Year Plan for Greater Adelaide to respond to new challenges and opportunities. The draft update is characterised by six high-level targets including "increasing infill from 70% of new developments to 85%".

Photo: Adelaide CBD looking south / Jon Westra / Licensed under Creative Commons BY-ND 2.0.

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