Gowrie Court and Sturt Flats Letter to Chief Minister Barr

February 26, 2015

in Past Issues

Griffith/Narrabundah Community Association Inc.

PO Box 4127, Manuka ACT  2603

www.gnca.org.au                                                                                       email:  info@gnca.org.au


Andrew Barr MLA

Chief Minister and Minister for Urban Renewal

GPO Box 1020


ACT 2601



cc Mr Peter Johns, Senior Manager, Community Services Directorate



Dear Chief Minister


The Griffith Narrabundah Community Association (GNCA) welcomed the news last year that the Government was moving to redevelop both the Stuart Flats and Gowrie Court.  These are both 1960s structures of no great architectural worth, even when new, and must now be well beyond their original design age.  An intelligent redevelopment of both these sites, which did not disadvantage any current residents that wished to remain in the area, while making better use of these sites, would clearly be an welcome outcome. 

Consequently the GNCA was very happy to be involved in the detailed community consultations in relation to these two sites held in October 2014, and pleased when informal contacts with the Department of Housing suggested that many of our concerns had been noted and that the proposed designs would reflect a reasonable compromise between the various interested parties. 

In particular we were pleased that (as we understood it) the proposed outcome for the Gowrie Court site would be mainly low rise town houses rising to four storey apartments at the rear of the block facing over the oval.  We were also happy with the outcome for the Stuart Flats where the community’s dislike of high rise apartment towers and the proposed appropriation of existing public open space had been heeded, resulting in a less aggressive proposed redevelopment much more likely to achieve public acceptance.  Our experience with the public consultation process was that it was worthwhile, and produced good outcomes for both residents and for the Department of Housing.

The status of the Stuart Flats and Gowrie Court sites is now ambiguous, following the recently announced decision to dispose of the Stuart Flats site.  It is not clear whether Gowrie Court is also to be sold, and was merely omitted from the media release, or whether the Department of Housing is to retain Gowrie Court.  If the latter is the case, it is not clear whether Gowrie Court is to be redeveloped or left in its current aging condition.  In the case of the Stuart flats, are these to be sold with the proposed design overlay resulting from last year’s community consultations applied, or will potential developers be free to propose their own outcomes?

The GNCA looks forward to participating in any consultations that the Government might propose to hold before moving forward in relation to the Stuart Flats.

Yours sincerely

24 February 2015


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