December 12 2017

December 12, 2017  -  MAV Offices, 60 Collins Street, Melbourne CBD

HowCare Interest Group met with 18 people representing councils and interested bodies, to discuss the issues around housing affordability, tiny houses, and current initiatives.

The meeting opened with introductions, and confirmation that all delegates had a copy of the Tiny House Planning Resource 2017 - A Place For Tiny Houses - prepared by six groups based in Queensland - ESC Consulting, The Tiny House Company, Plannery Co, Shelter, Griffith University, and Tiny Consulting.

There followed a discussion of the Tiny House movement, the concept of Tiny House on Wheels, and various projects described in the resource document.

The meeting then opened to hear from the delegates. While there was consensus on the need for more affordable housing, the range of issues blocking this was quite diverse.

Amanda Power - Moyne Shire ( centered around Warrnambool ) highlighted the existing council requirement that housing blocks have septic tanks, and how this was a problem in the micro hamlets in her area, as the cost made development of these already small, titled allotments prohibitive.

Lucas Gardiner - Mornington Peninsula has the same requirement, that an unsewered block must have a full treatment plant installed at any point of change of ownership, or when a redevelopment or build is planned.

Fiona Stephens and Jo Wilson - Mitchell Shire ( Wallan and Broadford ) discussed a large multiple tiny dwelling project, with central support services buildings, underway for youth rehabilitation and drug support service. This is a five year plan with a budget of around $1 million. This was compared to the Launch Housing project in Footscray using VicRoads surplus land with budget of $5 million ( described in the resource document )

Julian Peck and Louise - Mt Alexander Shire talked about their ongoing discussions with Fred Schultz ( Fred’s Tiny Houses ) and the Castlemaine Housing Project group on house options and impediments.

The general outcome of the meeting was the recognition of common problems in addressing affordable housing; the mix of older bylaws and planning regulations that hinder development projects; the opportunity for sharing experiences at both councillor and planning officer levels; and the potential of tiny house projects ( mobile, micro house, and relocatable ) to support council initiatives.

This meeting was only 2 hours, and there was requests from delegates present, and from those unable to attend, that a full day be scheduled in early 2018 for a follow up and more detailed discussion


© Talah 2018