Robyn is taking a less opportunistic and more constructive, even …

Comment on 10 ideas for revitalising the Alice Springs CBD by Careful with that $, Eugene.

Robyn is taking a less opportunistic and more constructive, even bi-partisan, line than usual with her suggestions here. Engagement with landlords, and assessment of existing expenditure and maintenance practices are good starting points, if they have not already been done by the NT government and AS Town Council.
The suggestion by Mr/Ms “Free Cash Giveaway” to “encourage [landlords] to not sit on an empty asset by charging higher rates for empty shopfronts” – i.e. by council charging them extra rates if a shop is left vacant for too long – sounds like a very good suggestion.
I also share “Free Cash Giveaway’s” belief that public money should not be contributing to the improvement of private business premises.
I like Robyn’s proposal to allow one-way traffic flow in the whole Mall.
On the other hand, I strongly disagree with her suggestion that the NT government should enrich the white shoe brigade further by buying the old Melanka site. Not only would that use up $10m of the funds that will be needed to construct the art gallery; but it would also have the unedifying effect of having the gallery pearl facing off against the ugliness of the 24 hour servo wasteland, ultra-banal shop fronts, the Thrifty Car rentals yard and the KFC outlet: exactly what is not needed for the ambience of Central Australia’s foremost cultural attraction.
There are other good sites that are already owned by the government that could be used for the national Indigenous art gallery, in or very close to the CBD.
I also like the suggestions coming from many citizens for more shaded (probably multi-story) car parking close to the Mall and the CBD shopping centres, and more diversified indoor play spaces for children in the vicinity of the Mall and the shopping centres. We have to remember that it is too darn hot to do without these facilities for six months of the year.
I don’t believe that we should go overboard and provide every self-styled artist or craftsperson with a free pop-up space without regard to the nature and quality of the work on display. We could wind up with too much very self-indulgent clutter of little interest to most tourists and locals if we don’t watch out. You can revitalize the arts without going to extremes.
In relation to Maya’s thoughts: Malls are not sacred. We can change its name to the Arts and Business Precinct, or whatever. Don’t get hung up on the word Mall. Cars will not interfere with pedestrian activity where there is in actual fact normally very little pedestrian activity anyway. In the six months of the year when it is too hot for most tourists, and most locals are at work or school in our air-conditioned caves, who is going to walk around anyway, Maya?
As for window shopping, we are at home reading the Alice Springs News Online and the New York Times on our Ipads, cooking our gourmet meals with Masterchef on the telly, ordering up new clothes and food processors from China, or watching Game of Thrones until midnight.
Why should shopkeepers risk more broken windows courtesy of alienated drunks or bored children by taking down their shutters after dark if we local residents are not going to go out in the heat of the night to gaze at bohemian creations or great art that we already see on our trip to get coffee from the Red Sands during the day?
Sorry, but more lights are not going to do it. We are all mostly too time poor for that.
And allow coffee shops to remain open till late? Nothing, except the non-appearance of we patrons, is making them shut at 4pm.

Recent Comments by Careful with that $, Eugene

Billen’s family: Make telling hotel where you trek mandatory
Ruth Gibbins (Posted January 23, 2019 at 7:55 pm): Monika Billen was not at Trephina Gorge, the park reserve about 85 km east of Alice, where the German couple, the Thors, died from thirst or exposure 12 months ago.
Monika visited a different park reserve, Emily Gap, which is only about 10 km east of Alice. She seemingly walked there by herself on a very hot day, above 40 degrees centigrade.
Monika was apparently found under a tree in a rugged area, well away from the road, about three km back towards Alice from that small gorge.
So she died in the bush about seven km east of Alice, but in the bush, off the road.
There is no established walking track through the bush from Emily Gap to Alice.
Sadly, Monika had been missing for a week before anybody realised that she had not returned from her walk to and from Emily gap, along a non-designated route, in the extreme heat.


Police drop MLA’s trespassing charge
InterestedDarwinObserver (Posted January 24, 2019 at 8:52 am): Your statement is highly confusing. Are you really saying that Bruce is like a perpetual victim, identity politician and social justice warrior, and that Sandra Nelson MLA stood him up? I know that Bruce has been a bit of an anti-fracking warrior, but I would have thought that your description of him is a bit excessive.


Firm ‘no’ from PM, Scullion to bailing out ‘bankrupt’ Territory
Evelyne Roullet (Posted January 16, 2019 at 6:30 pm): Re your question “Why does a Federal Government help a Labor Government?”
I could just as well ask: “Why shouldn’t a Federal Government help a Labor Government, or any other type of government, for that matter?”
Federal governments of both persuasions help state and territory governments in all manner of ways all the time, and why shouldn’t they?


End of search for Monika Billen
New Tech (Posted January 17, 2019 at 8:38 am): The police announced early in the search that they were making very extensive use of drone technology.


Drug dog sniffs out grog runners
Evelyne (Posted below on January 14, 2019 at 10:15 am) says rhetorically: “Is there a law dictating how much alcohol can be carried in a vehicle? No!”
I have no idea whether Evelyne is correct, but it is evident that she is not aware of the powers conferred on NT police (and now on the NT Police Auxiliary Liquor Inspectors, aka PALIs) by a new Commonwealth law enacted by John Howard’s Federal Liberal-National Party Coalition government in September 2007. (The Federal law was immediately confirmed by the then NT Government in complementary amendments to its NT Liquor Act).
From that time NT police have been empowered to seize, and keep or destroy, any alcohol when they judge that the person in possession of it may be intending to illegally on-sell it and/or has no intention of consuming it in a place where it is legal to consume alcohol.
This power has formed the basis for almost all the POSI, TBL and PALI activities outside liquor outlets since they were first introduced by police under the Henderson Labor government in May 2012, up to the present day.
So Evelyne, the amount of alcohol in a vehicle is irrelevant. The powers of police to make a judgement about the situation are the key factor.
As for Ms Roullet’s opinion that “People should learn to control their environment”, it is hard to disagree. What an excellent “motherhood statement”.
It is even harder to fathom how Evelyne thinks this might begin to happen, in any constructive, sustainable and just manner, without the great help of the PALIs using the special powers conferred on them back in 2007, especially in relation to those people who are generally the main victims of alcohol-fuelled mayhem and waste: Infants, other children, many women, the weak, the infirm and the elderly. Do you think they should all be trained in the martial arts and issued with tazers and mustard gas, Evelyne?
Under exactly what circumstances do you think people would be able or likely to “learn to control their environment” if they were again engulfed in a tsunami of alcohol, Evelyne?
Would you be there to throw life jackets to the victims of the excessive drinkers?
Or would you prefer to let the survival of the fittest apply, and more generations of children fail to get a fair start in life?


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