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If you purchase a home in the central city, you may get a rates reduction.
Reviewing the rates remission policy is one of a suite of incentives the city council is investigating as part of its target to boost the population of the central city from 6000 to 20,000 by 2028 as part of Project 8011.
However, the Englefield Residents Association, which covers Fitzgerald Ave, Avonside Drive, Linwood Ave, England St and Armagh St, says it seems like an unfair proposal.
Said chairwoman Irinka Britnell: “It’s a big incentive because they’re desperate to get people into these apartments that don’t seem to be selling. They’re not cheap,” she said.
Ms Britnell said the Linwood Village area needs rates rebates with a lot of businesses closing their doors.
However, Central Ward city councillor Deon Swiggs said the potential rebate and other incentives are about “looking at the bigger picture”. They could also lift the value of the area and offset the costs.
“Work needs to be done in the central city to get people back. But different work needs to be done in areas like Linwood and Addington. We’re not forgetting about those suburbs.”
Linwood-Central-Heathcote Community Board deputy chairman and city council candidate Jake McLellan said he wants to see a “vibrant” city centre.
“We need to do what’s most effective . . . what we cannot do is hand out millions and millions for developers,” he said.
Any form of incentive was supported by Williams Corporation director Matthew Horncastle.
“We have to keep momentum going in terms of building in the central city,” he said.
“Anything we can do to keep this snowball going is a positive.”
A further report will also go to city councillors on a wider package of incentives and mechanisms to encourage more residential development in the central city by the end of next month.
City council head of urban regeneration, design and heritage Carolyn Ingles said concerns would be addressed when considering a new remission, which is the purpose of the review.
“The incentives work has been undertaken to investigate the potential of each incentive to encourage development.”
Ms Ingles said how different incentives would encourage development will be part of the next phase of work.
It also approved a $100,000 trial service for developers and landowners to discuss concepts with city council staff.
Project 8011 was endorsed by city councillors last year.
It found high land and building costs, affordability in the suburbs, consenting hassles and lack of apartment culture were some of the reasons for the lack of population growth within the central city.
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