March Message from Michael Tilt, CEO

Let’s start this month’s message with a West Coast flavor…

The WA State Government faced its own metaphorical stormy weather earlier this month, losing office to the Labor party in the election held just three weeks ago.  One of the big questions for residents in regional WA will be how the new McGowan government plans to continue with the Royalties for Regions program which was established in 2008.

Since that time, Royalties for Regions has delivered more than $7 billion in funding to regional areas. To date, the Pilbara has been the centre of much of the spending which has seen Karratha develop from a small mining town to a regional city, with a new hospital, theatre and library complex, and city centre upgrades.  The monies are generated from mining royalty revenue, and the new government has been talking about introducing efficiencies and a fairer sharing of funding.

In Melbourne this week, our Chairman, Brian Haratsis, delivered a presentation for the Property Council of Australia on retirement living. Brian provided a snapshot of the seniors’ sector, including statistics on retirement intentions and retirement income.

Brian contends that traditional retirement villages are out-dated and that it’s time to rethink retirement living.  We need new housing models and more product types, such as multi-family dwellings and 10-year lease options for older renters.

Retirement living is a pressing issue as our population ages.  The number of Australians aged 65 and over will tip the five million mark in less than a decade – a statistic we know from the census.

On June 27, the first batch of detailed results from the latest census will be released, including stats on population, housing profiles and incomes.  Round two of the results will be out in October, with information on employment, place of work, and incomes by industry.

The census provides material for a detailed insight into the trends shaping our urban markets.  Macroplan will prepare presentations interpreting the census data specifically for the property market.  We’ll be looking at growth hotspots, the profile and housing tenure of populations in the inner cities and in newer communities in outer areas, and where jobs growth is occurring.

Our presentations will be tailored around the two data releases and we encourage you to book for both sessions.  If you want to be first in, I suggest contacting us now to arrange a time in August (for the July data) and November (for the October release).

This month saw the closure for public comment on two regional plans – South East Queensland, at the start on March, and Greater Sydney closes for submissions from today.  District plans such as these are a smart way to manage for future growth, providing effective planning for land use, transport and infrastructure.

One of the major developments which will have a huge impact on all transport and infrastructure planning is the autonomous vehicle.  Macroplan has taken the lead on incorporating projections of how this game-changing technology will impact future planning.  So, we are pleased to be supporting Future Vehicles World 2017 conference.  This year is only the second time it has been held.

The era of autonomous vehicles is just around the corner and many of the most innovative companies are racing to bring them to market.  The economic and social gains they generate will be tremendous.

Join us and a cast of key international industry experts in Sydney on May 2-4 to learn about the technology timeline, what’s imminent, and the various ‘future’ scenarios.  Macroplan clients are eligible for a 10% partner discount – so use promo code ASSN at the time of registering.

And finally, another item for the diary. Macroplan will again be sponsoring the PIA Congress Gala Dinner . . .  but with a twist.  This is the first time the dinner will also be a charity event.  We are partnering with the amazing people at Orange Sky, the nation-wide Aussie charity that started less than three years ago, washing and drying clothes for the homeless.

They’ve grown to 11 mobile laundry vans, three shower vans, and over 800 volunteers, providing clean clothes, conversation and social contact for those doing it tough.  Even if you don’t attend the conference, you can come to the gala dinner, enjoy the social event of the year, and contribute to a great cause.  (PS: We’re also looking for donations for the raffle prize to help these guys)

It may be orange skies for charity, but give me blue skies for the weather forecast . . . nothing but blue skies, from now on. Further to this, my thoughts are with those who were affected by Cyclone Debbie this week and the poor weather that followed.

Michael Tilt


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