$50,000 step to unlock Crown land

Adelaide Plains Council (APC) is making a $50,000 commitment to masterplan the main street of Two Wells and in the process, accelerate the unlocking of acres of Crown land in a bid to encourage business growth and support population expansion.

In a report presented to APC’s September 23 meeting, CEO James Miller outlined the next steps forward for council to free-up crown land in the Two Wells township, specifically the southern side of the town’s main street.

“A significant amount of undeveloped Crown land exists within the Two Wells main street precinct that lends itself to retail development,” Mr Miller stated.

“This land has had considerable delays in being developed and a lack of genuine interest from developers due to legislative constraints associated with the development of Crown land.”

Council resolved at a special meeting in August to prioritise the advancement of processes surrounding the unlocking of the Crown land at Two Wells, with hopes it will facilitate retail investment opportunities to support the growing community.

Council’s CEO has established a strategy to facilitate this process, and $50,000 has been set aside in this year’s budget to advance master planning of the Two Wells main street, with a portion of these funds allocated for the engagement of an experienced consultant.

APC held an informal meeting in February to investigate the potential of the town’s main street further, with planning consultants, Jensen Plus, on hand to address members.

The address talked through a number of elements associated with community engagement previously undertaken by council, including the current zoning applicable, which guides development, and some of the land use constraints associated with land assemblage and land tenure.

Jensen Plus also reviewed council’s Two Wells Urban Design Guidelines, and stated in its final report:

“Our review approach (was), rather than re-write the Two Wells Urban Design Guide Lines which contain sound advice generally but create ‘off-street’ development areas, instead build on the guidelines to identify urban design actions that can be implemented simply over time, respond to growth in the area, anticipate future demand, revitalise Two Wells, engage local business and attract future investment.”

APC intends to engage the services of Hudson Howells, a leading South Australian strategic management consulting firm, who will speak at its upcoming strategic planning forum, and has already received advice from Minister for Environment and Water, David Speirs, regarding the process to unlock Crown land.

Ongoing discussion with the Department for Environment and Water (DEW) has seen council establish Crown land may be released or unlocked through any of four options: 1. Sale of Crown land direct to council; 2. Sale of Crown land direct to a private developer; 3. Sale of Crown land on the open market; or 4. Dedicated Crown land.

Consideration must be given to the rights and interests of existing tenants and all heritage matters, however, Mr Miller is confident with the direction council is taking.

“Through early, positive liaison with DEW, coupled with the engagement of experienced and highly respected consulting firm, Hudson Howells, council ought to be bullish in what can be realised for our fast growing community,” he stated.

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