Roundup: Something fishy when they say we live like sardines


I’m not one to jump on Nimbys (Not In My Back Yard) – most of us think there should be shelters for the homeless, and halfway houses for former jail inmates, but few of us want them next door.

Even so, it irritates me when people who favour houses and object to high-rises, usually for no logical reason, talk ignorantly about apartment residents living like sardines in little boxes.

The latest misrepresentation of the way we choose to live is an all-too predictable response to the NSW government’s plan for high-density development at Edmondson Park.

Out there, 40 km from Sydney’s CBD, they seem to think they should be immune from high rise development.

According to this story in the Sydney Morning Herald, the state government wants to modify planning controls to build more than 3200 homes and buildings up to 67 metres high.

“Why should the burden of development [be] put on Edmondson Park or Liverpool area in general, whereas rich areas like northern beaches, eastern suburbs are nowhere near sharing this responsibility?” said one resident, who has clearly never made the trip to Pyrmont, Wolli Creek or Artarmon.

 “People deserve better than living in shoeboxes and squashed in like sardines,” said Anoulack Chanthivong, the Labor member for Macquarie Fields.

Really? Is that what we’re doing? The story says nothing about the size of the apartments, although there will be studio flats for singles and young couples.

Regardless of this ill-informed opinion, it’s notable that the report landed the same day that ABC TV ran a story showing that we are going to run out of areas to grow food around Adelaide if the urban sprawl of ticky-tacky houses and McMansions isn’t replaced with high rise developments.

That follows this story about the same problem in Sydney and this one about the Melbourne food bowl.

Forget all the shoebox and sardines BS.  The population is growing and it’s better for cities to go up than out.  End of story.

Anyway, that’s enough from me.  Here’s what’s been keeping your fingers flying as you typed your troubles into the Flat Chat Forum.

  • What does a tenant do when an agreed pre-lease clean clearly hasn’t occurred but the cleaner and the landlord say it has?  That’s HERE.
  • How can I tell if my strata levies are too high? That’s HERE.
  • Things are getting out of hand in the garbage bins versus garden range wars. That’s HERE.
  • Has anyone heard of ‘catastrophe insurance’? What’s it for and do we need it? That’s HERE.
  • Strata laws say you have to give so many days notice of a meeting. But what does that mean, precisely, when you take postage times into account? That’s HERE.

The above stories are just your latest posts to the Forum.  By the time you read this there will be a stack more strata head-scratchers. Sign up for our newsletter and you won’t miss a beat,


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