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You are here: Home / UrbanGrowth, SMDA & RWA Plans & Activities / Waterloo Public Housing & Metro Station Redevelopment / Waterloo Estate Options / Waterloo option testing begins with new option information

Waterloo option testing begins with new option information

Options testing has begun with the release of additional information on each options released on the first day of testing. Below is REDWatch's guide to options testing and our concerns about the process that was emailed to REDWatch's members and supporters lists.

Communities Plus Waterloo Housing and Neighbourhood Design Board

Waterloo Options Material Released

Finally, the additional material for Waterloo options testing today became accessible on the www.communitiesplus.com.au/waterloo website. It was posted the day that focus groups for options testing started. The material posted is in addition to the initial Waterloo Redevelopment Options Brochure and gives additional material to that shown to REDWatch and the WRG a month ago.

The additional material is made up of an annotated explanation of each option and artist impressions and perspective views of each option. There is also a side-by-side comparison of the three options across the five key areas that Land and Housing Corporation (LAHC) wants community feedback to focus on.

The direct link to the options boards are below:

Option 1 - Waterloo Estate

Option 2 - Waterloo Village Green

Option 3 - Waterloo Park

The thematic boards comparing options are:

LAHC has also released a new  Indicative Staging Plan that provides no greater detail on staging than that provided in the initial options brochure other than to state that a mix of housing will be equally distributed across the estate.

Waterloo SSP Baseline Investigations - Key Study Summaries may also be of use in looking at some of the issues on the thematic boards.

Scale Models for each of the options have also been prepared. You can see them at Waterloo Connect and the Information Days. The models are very small and lack human scale. They model the actual floor space allowed in each option. They are also the only place you will get an idea of height. Contrary to expectations, LAHC has not released the actual building heights in each model nor the associated shadow diagrams. So, you will need to pull-out your phone, turn on the torch and be your own sun to get an idea of what shadows the up to 40 storey buildings will throw. [The LAHC boards provide detail of the date and time that its shadows represent. This is helpful but it does not take the place of standard shadow diagrams for the options at the standard reference times of the year such as mid winter.]

LAHC complained about the 3D rendering and shadow diagrams undertaken by Vigilanti for WPHAG but they are still the only indication of shadowing. With no release of heights and envelopes, it is unlikely any more accurate shadow diagrams will eventuate. LAHC provided height ranges in their initial brochure on the options and Vigilanti maped the maximum heights in the absence of more accurate information from LAHC. You can download the Vigilanti analysis through the #Welivehere2017 FaceBook page. FACS also complained about the way that the Vigilanti work interpreted the relocation staging but other than to say housing types will be spread across the development LAHC have not provided any information that would lessen the anxiety for those living in the 1-6 year redevelopment zone. We encouraged LAHC to release the heights, shadow diagrams and finer grain staging but they have not done so.

If you plan to feed back to LAHC during options testing; you need to look at the additional options material above to make informed input and to answer the survey or group questions. You will also be able to see the above boards at the consultation events.

Options testing timeframe of concern – it maybe only 22 days!!

REDWatch is concerned that after there was considerable backlash to UrbanGrowth’s 21 days consultation for the Waterloo Metro, that LAHC is currently planning to close the options consultation 22 days after the options materials were placed on its website! The Waterloo Redevelopment Group of the Waterloo NAB negotiated with LAHC that there would be a two month period between the start of options testing and the release of the preferred option, and that the community would be able to continue to respond to options after LAHC’s focus groups were finished. With Rob Sullivan and Donna Lantavos leaving the Waterloo project these undertakings do not seem to have been passed back up the chain. We have contacted LAHC about the need to honour the undertakings that have been made to tenants. Hopefully this is just an oversight and it will be fixed soon - LAHC are looking at the issue.

The problem arises because LAHC was of the view that it would get most of what it needed to know from the focus groups. The WRG and Groundswell argued that everyone need to have access to the option materials and the opportunity to input into the process. We pushed for the options materials to be made available at the beginning of the process, two open days, the opportunity for groups to hold their own group discussions, and for the focus groups to be open to everyone through an expression of interest process. In short the community wanted as many as possible to be properly informed before they were asked to make their contribution. If the LAHC timeframe slipped, as it has, tenants did not want their time to participate cut short as a result.

How you can have your say about the options

Feedback Option 1: Information Days and Pop-Ups

Attend the Community Information Days on 13 October 2018, 10-2pm and / or 26 October 2018, 2-5pm on Waterloo Green. All the options material will be on display and you can make comments to the people on the stands. A free BBQ and refreshments will be available. Pop-up consultations will also be held at various other times. Contact Waterloo Connect for details at Shop 2, 95 Wellington Street, Waterloo waterlooconnect@facs.nsw.gov.au or 1800 738 718

Feedback Option 2: Survey

A survey is online at Waterloo consultation survey and you will be able to complete the survey at the Information Days and pop ups if you cannot get online. To complete the survey you really need to have the support materials in front of you because the survey asks you a question about aspects of each of the options, which option you prefer,  what is most important for you in preparing a plan and how you would like social, affordable and private housing mixed. You can get a print version of the survey from Waterloo Connect or download it from the REDWatch website here before you do the survey.

Feedback Option 3: Focus Groups

LAHC is holding 13 focus groups of people from different groups. Most of these will be groups of around 10 people. If you wish to be in one of these contact Waterloo Connect at waterlooconnect@facs.nsw.gov.au or call 1800 738 718. You can see a timetable for proposed focus groups here. Registering for a focus group does not mean that you will be selected to participate.

Feedback Option 4: Hold your own discussion

Focus Groups will not cover everyone so if you and some friends, your church, club or social group want to hold your own discussion then you can do so. A study guide is being prepared, similar to the questions for the focus groups. Here is the link to download the Options consultation kit for groups. You can also contact Counterpoint at The Factory or Inner Sydney Voice for the guide and any assistance you may need. You can report your group’s comments to LAHC. Apart from inputting into the process, it is likely that a group discussion will help people in the group better understand the proposed options and inform their discussions with other members of the community.