Peter Mitchell says Redland City Council must continue working closely with businesses in Cleveland and strive for “constant improvements and evolution” in its service delivery to ensure the future success of the suburb’s CBD.
The second term councillor has lodged a notice of motion, which appears in the November general meeting agenda, calling for council to recommit to delivering on the 2010 Cleveland Centre Master Plan and prioritise its implementation through a “coordinated” and “placed-based” approach.
Cr Mitchell, who has repeatedly rejected suggestions that the CBD is “dead”, said the master plan still held relevance in the current climate as it was extensively consulted at the time and continued to reflect the “aspirations of the community”.
He has also called for officers to report annually on the plan’s progress and publish the document in the public domain, saying this would help keep the community informed and assist with future planning.
“The crux of this is to maximise the internal and external efficiencies of all the efforts and elements that are going into Cleveland revitalisation, so it’s a big piece,” Cr Mitchell told Redland City News.
“There’s progressing the Cleveland Master Plan but also [looking at] more contemporary things like investment attraction, which is increasingly important, and of course the operational matters which people highly value – things like the gardens, amenity, cleanliness and lighting.
“Those operational factors of course need to be maintained but also that investment piece into the future and progressing the master plan, which is still an important document.”
Cr Mitchell said council recommitting to delivering on the master plan’s vision for the precinct would assist with several revitalisation initiatives such as boosting the area’s night-time economy, attracting events, and delivering complex infrastructure like smart lighting and innovative digital services.
“They’re the most descriptive and informing of the breadth and depth of the matters that inform revitalisation,” he said.
“The master plan is more of a planning document, so that’s more of the built form, but it’s extremely relevant to also connect the centres and make them walkable.
“The revitalisation piece, that’s the more human piece, so events and activation, and business engagement.”
Cr Mitchell said more people living in the “core” of the precinct would result in a more active night-time economy.
“Instead of everyone leaving to go home, they will be coming home to live and enjoy themselves,” he said.
“The more people that are actually residents, close to the centre, then they will be coming from work and looking to socialise after 3pm when others are going home.
“The other element is the businesses and council, who need to look at ways to celebrate Cleveland after those hours, and that’s the importance of the recent work that’s been done in the Cleveland Revitalisation Plan.”
Cr Mitchell said the Doig Street aged care development, a medical centre planned for the corner of Middle and Waterloo streets and the Cleveland Central development had emerged as vital pieces in the revitalisation puzzle.
“There are things in the medium term that will have more people living and working in the centre, so no miracles, but there are a number of factors that will come together,” Cr Mitchell said.
He said council must continue working with the business community to coordinate a program of business-led activation.
“I think whether you’re a big developer or whether you’re a small trader on Bloomfield Street, the confidence that you will get from hunting as a pack is going to be really important,” Cr Mitchell said.
“So maintaining a really coordinated and engaged business community along with council is probably going to be the big thing.”