I enthusiastically support the ideas put forward in this article, …

Comment on The West MacDonnell Ranges start at the council dump by Steve Brown.

I enthusiastically support the ideas put forward in this article, developing a tourist precinct south of the Gap incorporating the magnificent Heavitree Range / Mt Gillen.
I would also like to see the sewage recycled and the garbage shifted. The real estate they occupy is way too spectacular and valuable for such a mundane use.
There is no doubt this fabulous concept would enhance our tourist product attracting more visitors and encouraging them to stay longer.
However, this will in not lessen the need for a CBD upgrade and enhancement through projects like the combined Uniting Church council car park project. It will in fact accentuate the need for such a project, making our CBD a better safer cleaner place for visitors and locals alike.
I was somewhat bemused by the negative comments from some on the last Alice Springs News Online article about the council carpark / Uniting Church project, all comments made –astoundingly – without any of the commenters having sighted a concept plan!
Having had the benefit of doing so I can assure you the project is a very exciting one which would breathe new life into our embattled CBD.
The project isn’t just about car parking! It’s about bringing forward the inevitable and in fact already overdue, necessity to expand parking in the CBD.
It is doing this now to facilitate the much larger project, integrating our parking into the wider Uniting Church project in an innovative way.
This is a one-off opportunity to create something really special for the centre of our CBD. Whether or not we hold some idealism about not having carparks and motor vehicles in our CBD, no sane developer would build a project like this without them.
Why? Because 98% of our residents drive and wish to continue driving their motor vehicles!
Councils are driven by the needs, demands, of their ratepayers, not the other way ’round!
While it might be tempting for some to operate in idealistic superior bubble, demanding – like it or not – that residents ride bikes, I’m pretty sure that bubble will reach a pretty severe end at the first available election!
Like it or not, car parking is a commercial necessity for any CBD and it is up to council to forward a plan for its provision.
I hope it won’t be too much longer and some of these concepts for the town centre and its car parking can be put out for public comment.
The concept I have seen is about opening up the area around the Flynn Church through to Hartley Street creating a fantastic new community space around the Cchurch and the Old Hartley Street School which will cater for gatherings of several thousand – hence the name “The Meeting Place”. It’s a fantastic concept and I wholeheartedly endorse it as it will enhance our CBD and the amenity of our town greatly.
So yeh, great concept Ed … let’s do them both!

Steve Brown Also Commented

The West MacDonnell Ranges start at the council dump
@ Hal: Yeh, Hal I’m with you on that. I love the New Court House and having had the benefit of a site tour I can tell you that the top floor and its view, is to die for… make a fantastic restaurant.
Michael Sitzler and family are to be congratulated on a wonderful project and more particularly on his demonstrated belief in our community by making such a huge financial investment in its future, continuing I might add, a long family tradition.
As for the walk way, well its another wonderful infrastructure asset not so much to my taste visually but as with everything it’s a matter of personal preference.
Thanks NT Government – it’s a great asset to our community.
@ Micheal: Why you waiting for the election? Are you proposing to contribute something positive like running for council?
I hope you do, we are always looking for those willing to put up their hands and contribute to the decision making processes of their community. Will be looking out for your name on the hustings.
@ James: Not quite sure what your comment means but I’m not “telling” Micheal to leave, just suggesting that if it makes him so miserable perhaps he should.
Oh, and I was referring to a number of past comments not just the one to this particular article.


The West MacDonnell Ranges start at the council dump
Yeh Micheal, and who do you suppose decides when we need something? You? Your comments clearly demonstrate a bleak negative mindset as far as a town is concerned so it will probably come as quite a shock to you that many of us actually love the place believe in it and its future, we work very hard to make it a better place.
But mate, you can’t please everyone and if your’e so down in the mouth about us that all you can contribute is a stream of negative comments, do yourself and our town a favour move somewhere else.
If you haven’t already done so that is.
@ Hal: Pretty unhelpful comment to get into the new year … almost a wasted opportunity wouldn’t you say?
Melanka and the Ilparpa Valley are simply opportunities in the waiting, Hal.
No-one has quite been able to get these projects across the line just yet but its simply a matter of when, so please try not to be so bloody negative about it all. Negative people create negative towns!


Recent Comments by Steve Brown

National Indigenous Art Gallery future in doubt: Gunner
A few weeks back the Chief Minister also announced an Art and Cultural Centre for the City of Darwin.
A week or two later we suffered the announcement of extra flights direct from the Rock into Darwin while flights into the Alice were reduced. Coincidence?
Micheal is under enormous pressure in Darwin to do something for their ailing economy, if things follow the usual Territory precedents set long ago, Darwin will win out, and the Alice will once again loose out, as the entire concept is moved to the north.
That outcome helped along once again by a tiny minority of Alice Springs naysayers who once again in a totally and easily manipulated response have played exactly to the Chief Minister tune, providing the perfect excuse for the project to be moved north: “They don’t want it in Alice.”
What the hell, just another nail in the coffin for the local economy!
Just a few hundred extra jobs, extra visitors pouring millions into the local economy for the foreseeable future!
Ahh, who needs it anyway?
Those who spent so much time undermining it are certain to come up with some great ideas and funding to replace it, aren’t they?


GST billions yet we’re still the basket case
The clear intention of the extra funding was to allow the NT to bring infrastructure and basic services into some kind of equilibrium with the rest of the country, along with the full expectation that in building that infrastructure we would grow and create an economy capable of contributing to, rather than relying on, the rest of the nation.
Clearly those funded intentions have had another consequence, instead of assisting the growth of our economy as intended.
The extra funds have been used to “staff the office”, squandered on water parks sports grounds while desperately needed infrastructure languishes.
Basic services to communities are actually declining! All this while enormous opportunity across the spectrum of industry that should by now have been contributing to the national economy, is ignored! Ridiculous levels of government are simply suffocating all incentive, making it just to danm hard to operate here.
The Territory has become the perfect example of the sloth and dependence created by a truly socialist system, thanks to an over supply of untied, directionless funding.
This quite clearly has also been poorly monitored by the Feds themselves.
How can we possibly be meeting KPIs while infrastructure and services actually shrinks in some places?
What about those beautiful new police stations? They cost millions! Now we don’t even bother to staff them!
Who is taking responsibility for that?
The Federal Government must tighten up funding into the Territory and put a much greater emphasis on “proven positive outcomes”!
Forcing responsibility!
How do we end up killing off entire local industries by allowing and facilitating direct flights into The Rock, for instance?
It happened because nobody in Government gives a proverbial! How do we pull funding from infrastructure like the Old South Road and the Mereenie Loop in favour of sports grounds and water parks?
It happens because nobody gives a proverbial!
How the hell did we ever get into such a place that those in the capital justify and enjoy facilities sports grounds water parks by three, which are free to attend?
While at the other end of the Territory families are still looking at dirt roads, lousy unsafe water supplies, no facilities, not even a small swimming pool let alone a water park!
How does a decent human being justify that situation?
Sure, if we ourselves were actually contributing the dollars we squander upon ourselves … but we are not!
Time for change, time for a much fairer level of service across the Territory and if we want extra fluffy stuff on top of that, time to pay for it ourselves!


The financial crisis in the Northern Territory
The problem for the Territory began with a disproportionate level of GST funding which in turn allowed the creation of a vastly over inflated public bureaucracy mostly based in Darwin and whose members “expect gold plated services” to a level “superior” to that of most other Capitals!
Funding those over inflated services is achieved by parasiting funds intended to provide basic services to the further reaches of the Territory.
The problem is the parasite has become such a burden it’s killing off the host, our bureaucracy so large and directionless it’s suffocating the life out of the last vestiges of free enterprise while providing less and less on ground service to anywhere bar the Capital.
Which now under a reduced GST regime is beginning to get a taste of its own medicine, so God help the rest of us!
Is any NT Government better than Canberra ? Once I would have unhesitatingly replied “yes” to that question… Now? If we can’t put together a stringent well managed government with an overall Territory view, a goal to build the economy, freeing up private enterprise,massively reducing Government bureaucracy, repaying debt through building a larger economy! Redirecting GST funding to fulfil the original intention! Building infrastructure that facilitates long term growth and employment! If we can’t achieve this outcome within the next electoral cycle, I believe anything including Canberra would be better for the future of long term committed Territorians!
I think you’ll find Canberra will be thinking along similar lines.


Vowles, McConnell and Collins dumped from Caucus
Ken Vowles tells us that we are in a lot of trouble and we need to do something about it … kind of a “Der” moment really.
Further to that this afternoon he tells us the Government is being run, all decisions made, by advisers, bureaucrats, something I’m pretty sure most Territorians have long suspected.
So not only are we broke! But democracy, the peoples control of its authorities has gone out the widow altogether!
No wonder we are in trouble the Territories being run by the dysfunctional rabble that makes up its bureaucracy, no guidance from above, deaf ears to complaints from below.
Is there anything worth saving in the Self Government Act?


Treasurers meet on NT fiscal crisis: No offers from Canberra
@ So called Liberal: For the past years, since the introduction of the GST, the Territory has been receiving over and above the GST levels that other Australians revived with an expectation that we would invest wisely in infrastructure, right across the Territory, lifting our Aboriginal populations along with other Territorians to a 21st century level of living, services, health care, overall amenity while creating sustainable economies, employment, opportunity, happy healthy futures for all, repaying the investments of our fellow Australians.
Instead on the ground, in communities, we have growing poverty and despair, continuing welfare dependency, failure to deliver the most basic of services.
Now we are expecting worsening health outcomes as staff are withdrawn from clinics because.
Meanwhile in our glorious capital we’ve lived the high life, installed services, sports grounds, water parks, general amenities to a level that very few other Australians share.
Along with that we have built the most gigantic suffocating, free enterprise killing, parasitic bureaucracy which wastes the good intentions of the rest of the nation while delivering almost nothing.
What should have been a great boon for Territorians setting us up for the future has in fact been our undoing because of greedy self indulgent uncaring and blatantly incompetent government and governments
It’s time we stopped and took stock, time to undertake the biggest restructuring of our bureaucracy since the beginning of Self Government!
I think we have reached a point where it’s time the Feds inflicted upon us A Royal Commission that we really do deserve!
Territorians along with Canberra need to develop a believable, achievable, long term planned, incremental, infrastructural strategy which acknowledges the needs of all Territorians equally and sets out to lift the lives of all Territorians in that manner.
Do we grow our capital?
Of course we do. But not at the expense of the regions.
We grow our capital by developing our regions.
Which in turn feed the growth of the Capital.
We do all this through encouraging and facilitating the growth of free enterprise while shrinking Government to the minimum required – not making up almost the entire population, as it does today.


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