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  • Design matters.

    Design matters. It's a simple statement, yet so often overlooked in public infrastructure. Often governments see infrastructure as utilitarian: "designed to be useful or practical rather than beautiful". The recent demolition and replacement of Hobart's Parliament offices at 10 Murray St is a great example of why design matters. From a brutalist building, that was a blight on the skyline and dominated over the heritage parliament building below, to a stunning modern building that is beautiful to look at. It's not only beautiful to look at but the addition of the public space below, known as Parliament Square, has added to the amenity and practicality of the area. Good design increases happiness by making our surroundings appealing and pleasant to be in while enhancing practicality and usefulness. The most recent UTAS accommodation block on Melville Street, is a good example of bad design. While it may be functional as an accommodation setting, it is a simple concrete box, and frankly, it isn't good enough. It detracts from the city space, and is ugly to look at. Major developments in Hobart need to have high architectural value. Developments need to be great buildings that suit our great city. We own our city, and we can control what type of buildings are built here through planning and review processes. They must add to, not detract from, the cityscape. And large scale, wealthy property developers, including the University, need to be held to the highest standards - they can afford it. But good design doesn't just have to be applied to large scale developments . Good design has its place all through our city. From rubbish bins to bus stop shelters, footpaths to lighting, design is a constant in our lives and Hobart City Council must strive for the best design. A recent example of small-scale good design is the replacement of the unsightly concrete toilet block at Long Beach Reserve, Sandy Bay. The Long Beach area is an important location for many residents of greater Hobart, combining a large children's playground, sporting fields and beach front promenade. It is appropriate that this recreation area includes attractive and practical public facilities. By engaging local architecture firm, Preston Lane, to design a modern and beautiful amenity block, we once again see that good design improves both look and function. The new toilet block almost disappears into the hillside, no longer an eyesore. It has gained outdoor showers and modernised public bathroom facilities. It also includes a roof-top viewing platform with seating, again enhancing the utility and user experience. I believe in good design. I believe we should hold developers to account and I believe Hobart City Council should set the benchmark for design to enhance our lives and the liveability of our great city. Ryan.

  • Bushfire Preparedness

    This weeks bushfire on Mount Nelson came as a timely reminder to residents of Hobart city that bushfire is a threat we live with every summer. Science tells us that bushfires are likely to become more frequent and more ferocious in the immediate future as a result of climate change. This weeks fire in Mount Nelson started as a result of routine bush care, the use of a brush cutter. It roared into life in seconds, and as I drove past on the Southern Outlet, I saw flames stretching 15-20m into the sky while our fires services, both professional and volunteer, went to work to get this threat under contol. We take their work for granted but it is dangerous work, as the tragic crash of a fire fighting helicopter this month in the North of the sate reminded us all. So we must do everything we can to manage fire threat while living amongst the bushland mountain setting that we hold so dear. The 55th anniversary of the 1967 disaster reminded us all of the consequences of failing to do so. The fire at Mount Nelson tracked into an area of bushland that had recently undergone a fuel reduction burn. I have no doubt that this contributed to the Tasmanian Fire Service's ability to get the fire under control. Many aspects of fire mitigation come under Hobart City Council responsibilities. That is why it is important we continue to fund a proper fire mitigation strategy. Including: Supporting the Tasmanian Fire Service in their bush fire mitigation activities. Ensuring the network of fire trail in, and access points to, our bushland are maintained to the highest standard, which allows heavy tankers to get in to fire prone areas. Listening to fire fighting and fire mitigation experts, allowing science and experience to be at the forefront of Hobart's bushfire management plan. Continuing to enforce robust planning rules in bushfire prone areas. Supporting bushfire prone communities to have local plans in place in the event of major bushfire, including encouraging households to have current bushfire survival plans that are reviewed annually. Promoting safety messaging each bushfire season.

  • Hello.

    Well, this is my first post. The first of many I hope. I'm really excited to put my hand up to be a councillor at Hobart City Council in 2022. In my everyday life, I always look for solutions to problems. It's easy to be captain negative, criticising things willy nilly, not liking this, not liking that, not liking him or her. It's much harder to take the high road. (in fact, having cycled up Mt Wellington a number of times, I can assure you the its anything but easy to take the high road). My point is this: I believe that we can go on a journey together, a journey where you tell me what bothers you in life (about council of course!), and we discuss it with open hearts, open minds and most importantly, we look for solutions. We all have different challenges in our lives, just as we all have different ideas about how life should be, and how resources should be distributed and spent. But we need to work together to improve happiness for all and create healthy, productive communities. Fundamentally, I believe in a kind and caring society, where we look out for each other, where families and communities come together to achieve common goals. I also believe in a more equal society. I am so fortunate to be in the position I am in, my family have worked incredibly hard to get to where we are today, and hard work is important to achieve your goals. But some folk in society, simply don't have the means and never did have the means to pull themselves out of poverty, to put a roof over their head, to start a family. My work with ambulance over more than a decade has proven this true time and time again no matter the place. We must look out for the vulnerable people in society, and enable them with, what ever support they need, to lift themselves up by their boot straps and achieve a meaningful life. Communities play a key role in achieving this. Community matters. Life should be fun, rewarding and connected. Councils can play a key role in decreasing stress, allowing you more time to be happy. Ryan

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