Writing’s on the wall - stop playing games with State’s housing crisis

Published 22 May 2024

Bruce Highway Traffic

Mayor of City of Moreton Bay Peter Flannery today called on the State Government to start getting serious about the housing crisis.

“AV Jennings’ announcement last night to terminate their option for development at Waraba, due to expected costs not aligning with their forecasts, is a timely reminder for Government,” Mayor Flannery said.

“There is no doubt that infrastructure and development costs have increased - we’re seeing that across the board.

“However, we will not meet State Government mandated housing targets if a pipeline of catalytic infrastructure is not prioritised now.

“City of Moreton Bay has done the planning and we know what we need to manage impending growth. We have 12 growth fronts, but all of these are in underdeveloped areas.

“The fact of the matter is land can’t be turned into housing without infrastructure. Developers need certainty. They can’t just sit on paddocks and wait for their day in the sun!

“It’s all well and good for the State to mandate growth targets for Councils but they need to support that growth.

“That is why we have been calling on the State and Federal Governments to expedite funding for key infrastructure NOW.

“We really need the Bruce Highway Western Alternative (BHWA) and Buchanan Road projects to come online to facilitate housing.

“The State has been talking about the BHWA for years but it’s just another case of infrastructure lagging behind privately-funded development.

“The Federal Budget claimed to have a solution to ease infrastructure bottlenecks and better connect essential services to homes such as roads, water and power, and called for an increase in housing supply.  But not a dollar has been even offered to City of Moreton Bay for this purpose.

“With Councils only receiving 3% of tax revenue - it is up to the State and Federal Governments to make a real contribution to infrastructure that will unlock City of Moreton Bay’s huge growth area, so that housing targets can be met.

“As South East Queensland’s fastest growing city, we expect better and will hold the State to account when their budget comes down in June.

“The current lack of response in funding the enormous growth challenge that City of Moreton Bay faces is quite frankly inadequate.”

The landowner that AV Jennings had a development option with remains committed to achieving outcomes at Waraba. Waraba is a key growth area for South East Queensland and Council is hopeful that the land earmarked for the AV Jennings Rocksberg project will be quickly snapped up.

When completed, Waraba will be the size of Mackay providing 30,000 homes for about 70,000 people.

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