David Brand: CAPP candidate for Lake Ward

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I am the progressive candidate for Lake Ward, supported by Community Alliance of Port Phillip (CAPP).

I work with my partner Fooi-Ling Khoo in her niche architectural practice OOF! Architecture from our home on the Esplanade in St Kilda.  I teach Architectural History and Urban Design at the University of Melbourne, where my post-graduate Design Studios have been generating ideas for the future of our city over the past 12 years.

The Council desperately needs on it someone who is professionally literate in planning, heritage, architecture and urban design. I can read a plan, I can visualise the impact a building will have on its surroundings, and I understand the workings of planning laws.

I am a founding member of the Fishermans Bend Network, campaigning for better design outcomes, and of the Bring Back Brookes Jetty movement, lobbying to rebuild the much loved pier demolished last year.  Most recently I have commented publicly on the impact on view lines of the new Stokehouse and Lifesaving Club at St Kilda beach; helped the campaign to save the London Hotel in Port Melbourne; and made submissions to VCAT against the latest appalling development proposal at St Kilda Junction.

The development at the Junction is expected to spread as far south as Carlisle Street. The people of Lake Ward deserve active representation to ensure the St Kilda Road South Precinct planning amendment will be held to community, and not just developer expectations. I have the skills and experience to do this.

We need vision – not just management – to guide our city into the future. In the early ‘90s, I co-authored the City of St Kilda 20th Century Architectural Study, which still forms the basis of heritage protection in the St Kilda end of the city. I represented the community on the steering committee that merged all the city’s heritage studies after its amalgamation. On projects like these, my work has helped shape and protect our city’s historical environment.

However, architectural experience is not the only reason I am standing for the Council. Now, more than ever, we need to hold firm to our city’s proud traditions of inclusivity, diversity, and social justice. Our plans for community services, child-care, aged-care and social housing must be generous and fair.

I was elected to the Council in 1999, and served for two terms, including two years as the Deputy Mayor. I saw my fundamental councillor task as ensuring that a forward-looking city evolved in tune with its cultural potential, its social values and its heritage legacy.

On my watch, the groundbreaking Amendment C25 saved The Espy’s live music. I shepherded through the St Kilda Foreshore Urban Design Framework 2002, which continues to guide the community-based principles and planning for the future of the foreshore.

With the same determination I will pursue the current issues facing our neighbourhoods at the St Kilda end of Lake Ward. We need a comprehensive plan for Fitzroy Street and Acland Street, not just street beautification. We must conclude the long saga of the Triangle site, yet have the courage to reject mediocrity and even to pause in order to preserve the opportunity for something of great beauty in the future.

And I am a St Kilda Football Club tragic, which, if nothing else, has instilled in me a dogged optimism in a better future.




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