A NEW urban development authority will be established to oversee all urban renewal projects from their outset, South Australian Premier Jay Weatherill announced on Tuesday.
The authority will bring together agencies responsible for land and housing development, including the Land Management Corporation, redevelopment functions of Defence SA and strategic staff from Housing SA.
According to the government, the new authority will work with Housing and Urban Development Minister Patrick Conlon and also with communities to continue the revitalisation of South Australia's cities, suburbs and towns.
"Our expectations for urban renewal projects are very high – so it is crucial that the renewal of our urban areas is properly co-ordinated from the outset," Mr Weatherill said, adding that the best way to achieve this is to create a single body that will have responsibility for all urban renewal projects across Adelaide.
Mr Weatherill said the new body will identify land and public housing stock that will benefit from urban renewal and provide the certainty that is needed to release capital and encourage investment. He said it will also ensure that urban renewal projects meet the highest standards of planning and design.
Mr Weatherill said South Australia must make the most of the $2.6 billion investment in public transport that aims to revitalise suburban rail corridors with faster, quieter and greener electric trains from the end of 2013.
The new authority will also have responsibility for the Bowden development, the Port Adelaide Waterfront Redevelopment and South Australian Housing Trust (SAHT) projects such as Woodville West.
The Property Council of Australia said the government's move to establish the new authority represents a quantum leap.
Nathan Paine, SA division Executive Director, said the urban development authority is the final piece of the urban development puzzle and will give critical momentum to the state's infill targets and eliminate barriers to the 30-Year Plan for Greater Adelaide.
"Urban infill is one of the key strategies in the 30-Year Plan for Greater Adelaide that will help our city to grow in a way that's sustainable and sensitive to peoples' many different needs," Mr Paine said.
"After years of global and national research on effective governance regimes necessary to deliver successful urban infill development, the Property Council is convinced that the urban development authority model is the right one for South Australia.
"Coupled with the alignment of key Government agencies to form the Department for Planning, Transport and Infrastructure, we now have a governance structure that will streamline the redevelopment of run-down and underutilized parts of our city into great communities," Mr Paine said.
A taskforce chaired by Defence SA Chief Executive, Mr Andrew Fletcher, and a project team led by former HomeStart Chief Executive, Mr Gary Storkey, will work until the end of the year on government changes needed to provide the best model for the new authority.
In the interim, all affected agencies will report through the Housing and Urban Development Minister.