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SEQ Population Growth needs 12 Springfield-style mega cities to cope: Planner



Southeast Queensland needs a dozen mega-developments like Springfield if it is to cope with the extra 2.2 million people over the next three decades, a respected urban geographer has told Fairfax Media.

Springfield is expected to be home to 80,000 people by 2030. Photo: Glenn Hunt

Springfield is expected to be home to 80,000 people by 2030. Photo: Glenn Hunt

Professor Bob Stimson, Emeritus Professor in Geographical Sciences and Planning at the University of Queensland, told Fairfax Media there would be 5.5 million living between Noosa and Tweed Heads within three decades.

Professor Stimson – an analytical human geographer and regional scientist for 49 years – said Southeast Queensland could no longer rely on increasing densification with the existing area.

Population growth will require up to a dozen mega-planned communities to cope with an extra 2.2 million people. Photo: Glenn Hunt  Read more:

Population growth will require up to a dozen mega-planned communities to cope with an extra 2.2 million people.Photo: Glenn Hunt

Professor Stimson said between “10 and 12” large master-planned communities like Springfield or North Lakes – on Brisbane’s northern-edge – would be needed for the extra 2.2 million people.

“There is no way that all of the growth that is going to occur can be accommodated through urban infill,” Professor Stimson said.

“You are still going to need greenfield growth, fringe growth,” he said.

“So the big issue for Southeast Queensland over the coming decades is that you are probably going to need 10 or 12 of those types of developments to be occurring.”

Greater Springfield is a privately-owned 2680 hectare master-planned community south of Ipswich that has around 20,000 residents in two suburbs; Springfield and Springfield Lakes.

It started around 1995 and is planned to have 80,000 residents by 2030.

Professor Stimson said “green belts” between the Gold Coast, Brisbane and the Sunshine Coast were under pressure, but he believed would be protected because of the state government’s Southeast Queensland Regional Plan.

He said there was land near Beaudesert and Ipswich and between Brisbane and the Gold Coast for residential development.

“There is plenty of land that is not prime agricultural land, that is not ecologically important land, national park or high conservation-value land that could be taken up for that sort of growth.”

On Friday Australand launched a $400 million master-planned community for 25,000 people over 25 years called The Rise at Park Ridge in the Logan City Council area.

Australand’s Queensland general manger of  residential growth Cameron Leggatt said the development targeted low-cost home and land packages ($280,000) and provide 13,000 local jobs over 25 years as part of 2450-hectare project.

“With housing affordability throughout Brisbane and South East Queensland out of reach for many Australians, The Rise is keeping the dream of home ownership alive,” Mr Leggatt said.

Professor Stimson warned that jobs growth needed to accompany residential growth if it pushed further west than Ipswich.

He said jobs growth remained concentrated in the Sunshine Coast to Brisbane to Gold Coast line.

“Over the years I have been quite a critic of the Southeast Queensland planning process, which has tried to force growth into that western corridor because all the economic data demonstrates all the jobs growth is along the linear corridor that stretch to the north and south of Brisbane.”

Unemployment figures show Ipswich’s unemployment rate marginally higher in May 2015 than Brisbane’s western suburbs.

Unemployment – May 2015

Brisbane’s southside – 5 per cent

Brisbane’s inner-city – 5.5 per cent

Brisbane northside – 5.6 per cent

Gold Coast – 6.1 per cent

Brisbane West – 6.3 per cent

Moreton Bay – 6.3 per cent

Sunshine Coast – 6.8 per cent

Ipswich – 7 per cent.

However Ipswich Mayor Paul Pisasale said Professor Stimson appeared to be unaware of new job developments in Ipswich.

Ipswich’s labour market statistics show unemployment beginning to fall from 9 per cent to 7.4 per cent, with 2600 jobs created since March.

“We have a massive amount of industrial, commercial and retail development including the largest concentration of transport and logistics companies in Australia with DB Schenker, Northline and TNT at Redbank,” he said.

Cr Pisasale said jobs were being created at the new HOLCIM project underway at Swanbank, the new GE Electrical building at Springfield Central and with the Orion Shopping Centre doubling in size.

“RAAF Base Amberley is also continuing to expand with a workforce of more than 5000,” he said.

“Ipswich and the western corridor has a major role to play in satisfying growth in Southeast Queensland.

“We can’t continue to simply concentrate growth within Brisbane and the coastal fringe if we think we will maintain the same quality of life.”

In May 2010 former premier Anna Bligh announced plans for three mega-cities in Southeast Queensland to provide homes for 250,000 people.

Those three cities – at Ripley (near Ipswich), Yarrabilba (south of Logan) and Bromelton – about six kilometres south of Beaudesert – are all underway

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Low interest rates cuts negative gearing ATO investor claims in 2012-13



Low interest rates cuts negative gearing ATO investor claims in 2012-13

Low interest rates cuts negative gearing ATO investor claims in 2012-13


Record low interest rates have shown up in new statistics from the Australian Taxation Office, in a sizable drop in negative gearing tax claims by property investors.

Claim for rental properties fell from around $13.8 billion to $12 billion between the 2011-12 and 2012-13 financial years.

The latest statistics for 2012-13 show that 1.26 million people deducted losses made on investments (including mortgage interest) from their overall income, from the 12.7 million lodged individual tax returns.

The overall cost of negatively-geared rental properties has fallen by $2.4 billion, or 31 per cent, in 2012-13, due to record low interest rates and higher rents.

The Tax Office’s latest statistics shows 1.9 million landlords.

The value of rent returned was up 8.6 per cent to $36 billion but the value of interest claimed was down 6.7 per cent to $22 billion.

While the number of landlords with negatively-geared properties increased by almost 60,000, their tax deductions fell 13 per cent.

​The highest number of property investors claiming tax deductions had a taxable income – after tax deductions – of between $37,000 to $80,000 a year.


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Investment Advice

Nearly two milllion negative gearing investors across Australia: ATO



Nearly two milllion negative gearing investors across Australia: ATO

Nearly two milllion negative gearing investors across Australia: ATO

Negative gearing property investors now total 1,967,260 across Australia, according to the ATO latest data.

That’s up from the 1,895,775 in the previous tax year, 2011-12.

There were 1,811,175 investors claiming rental income in the 2010-11 year.

The ATO has a investor rental video series on working out your tax correctly.

The statistics for the 2012–13 income year were sourced from 2013 individual income tax returns processed by 31 October 2014. The statistics are not necessarily complete.

This data is not representative of the total number of properties.


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Racing for rentals: competitive market leaves many homeless



Rental properties.

Rental properties.

UNSHINE Coast landlords are continuing to enjoy a golden run, with new figures showing a vacancy rate for rental properties of just 1.9%.

But while it’s good news for investors and the local economy, the lack of vacancies is making it difficult for people looking for a place to live.

The figures released by the REIQ showed the Sunshine Coast’s market had loosened by 0.8% but was still the third tightest in the state, behind the Gold Coast and Moreton Bay (both 1.3%).

At the other end of the scale, Mackay had a 9.4% vacancy rate as the mining boom evaporated.

The figures were released as the annual Anglicare rental affordability snapshot confirmed a widespread failure of the private rental market to service the needs of regional Australians on low incomes.

While REIQ CEO Antonia Mercorella welcomed the figures as good news for local economies, the Anglicare report showed only 7.3% of all 14,000 regional rental properties on the market last week were affordable for those on the minimum wage.

The results for single parents were even worse, revealing those on parenting payments in regional areas had to compete for just 3.7% of all advertised properties.

Those on Newstart could afford just 0.6% of the properties available.

“This (the new figures) is a strong indicator that other sectors of the economy may be rebounding, and we are buoyed by this news,” Ms Mercorella said.

Lynn Kalwy, of Kennedy Property at Pacific Paradise, said older tenants on fixed incomes were feeling the rental squeeze as landlords raised rates to reflect increased demand and sharp rises in insurance premiums following recent natural disasters.

While retirees and older people were the best tenants, Ms Kalwy said those on pensions could afford to pay only so much.

“The public housing is not there like it used to be and it is becoming a struggle,” she said. “There is not much there for them after rent.

“As prices go higher they will be at a disadvantage.

“We had an older tenant recently who couldn’t get government housing here and was told the only available places were in Gympie.”

Ms Kalwy said vacancies on the Maroochy River north shore went quickly as they became available.

Duplexes range from the low to mid-$300s and as high as $390 for a quality property.

Homes, depending on their state, ranged upward from the high $300s.

The only home currently on her books was in Mudjimba, with the landlord seeking $595 per week.

North Shore Realty’s Jay Pashley said the firm’s rental book had been tight for the past 18 months.

He said it had been common to receive 1000 inquiries a month up until March, when they had inexplicably dropped away to just 300.

Inquiries had rebounded this month to the earlier numbers.

“It feels as though we are short of property,” Mr Pashley said.

But apparently not short of people willing to pay up to $1000 a week for prime homes and units in beachfront locations.

“Three hundred dollars a week will get a one-bedroom studio above a garage at Town of Seaside – $700 or $800 a week for a house is not out of the question and $1000 a week is not uncommon,” Mr Pashley said.

“People with money who are prepared to sit on the sidelines to see if they like living here and can find employment will pay $50,000 in rent in advance to secure the right place.”


Gold Coast 1.3%

Moreton Bay 1.3%

Sunshine Coast 1.9%

Logan City 2.1%

Greater Brisbane 2.2%

Fraser Coast 2.3%

Cairns 2.4%

Redland City 2.4%

Ipswich 2.4%

Brisbane City 2.5%

Toowoomba 3.2%

Gladstone 3.8%

Bundaberg 4.1%

Rockhampton 4.4%

Townsville 5.9%

Mackay 9.4%

By Damian Bathersby

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