10/03/2011 - 11:19

Day launches Pilbara planning guide

10/03/2011 - 11:19

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The state government has released a new planning and infrastructure framework to guide urban development in the Pilbara for the next 25 years.


The state government has released a new planning and infrastructure framework to guide urban development in the Pilbara for the next 25 years.

Planning Minister John Day said the framework would address the scale and distribution of future population growth, housing development and priority infrastructure needs.

Under the state government's Pilbara Cities initiatives, the Pilbara is expected to grow its population to more than 140,000 by 2035, driven by the aggressive expansion in the resources sector.

Key principles of the framework include:
- Developing two modern, higher density cities that provide improved amenity and quality urban design;
- Creating sustainable communities with access to rfange of employment, housing, cultural, educational and recreational opportunities;
- Provision of a high standard of infrastructure, including interconnected transportm, utilities and community services;
- Encouraging climate specific building design; and
- Safeguarding natural assets and cultural heritage.

The framework flags both Karratha's and Port Hedland's populations to grow to 50,000 by 2035, while Newman will emerge as a subregional centre with a population of 15,000.

According to the plan, Karratha and Dampier will become Karratha City, the focus of a regional hub comprising the satellite settlements of Dampier, Roebourne, Wickham, Point Samson and Cossack.

Port Hedland and South Hedland would become an eastern hub of the Pilbara, with its ports and increasing international demand for resources providing the city with a long-term economic security.

Residential development in Port Hedland would gravitate towards medium-density, with the proliferation of more townhouses and apartments, the plan said.

And the plan said Newman's future role is as a sub-regional service and tourism centre, in addition to its role as the mining hub for the East Pilbara.

"With infrastructure capacity a significant inhibitor to urban development in some towns, the framework will guide government on infrastructure priorities across the Pilbara and give the private sector more confidence to invest in the region," Mr Day said in a statement.

"Strategies for economic growth, environmental issues, transport, infrastructure, water resources, tourism and the emerging impacts of climate change are also identified in the framework."

Regional Development minister Brendon Grylls said the framework would link into the state government's Pilbara Cities initiatives.

"The framework sets the broad future planning direction for the Pilbara region and will help make the Pilbara a better place in which to live, work and invest," Mr Grylls said.

"More affordable housing, greater housing choice and access to higher standards of education, health, recreation and other community services will result in many fly-in fly-out workers choosing to live in the Pilbara on a more permanent basis.

"Importantly, the Pilbara's natural and cultural heritage assets, such as Karijini and the Burrup Peninsula's rock art will be conserved and celebrated under the framework."

The framework is open for public comment until May 9.

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