Adelaide

Mia Handsen from the revised newspaper formerly known as TheAdvertiser (now known as AdelaideNow) has written a classic blog that asks as many questions as ideas that it puts forward. But this particular post talks about an idea put forward by the Adelaide council to heat the paver’s in Rundle Mall and put a roof all the way down the mall.

Egad, I couldn’t think of a bigger waste of money. Is this real, or just a proposal to get public response? I suspect the latter.

Mia is asking ex-patriots for opinions how we can improve the city. I suspect she believes that the other bigger cities around the country might have ideas that we can attempt to emulate. Oh yeah, like smog-clouds around the upper-stories of the CBD, or a monorail from the airport to … somewhere… but nobody uses but the elite and the airport staff (Yes, Brisbane, I am talking about you!). Or better yet, trams that … oh we have done that already. Oh, maybe we can build a Perth marina that holds no permanent inhabits… ooh, we have that at Glenelg!

Mia, take a walk around our mile-wide CBD, around each square, north to east to south to west … Check out the number of glass & concrete effigies currently being e’rected between Hindmarsh Victoria Square. Our city planners have been putting in an amazing amount of time, effort and money to bring this little city into the third millennium.

Along the Southern side of the CBD, from West to East terrace we now have an abundance of pastel-concrete cubes that are supposedly apartments. Yes, they lack any character, and look surprisingly empty of life nor ownership. I’d hate those Strata Title meetings – they’d surely make a government committee meeting look like fun!

After a few minutes walking around the Adelaide CBD today, you’ll most certainly feel like you’re in London or Sydney. Albeit without the smog, traffic, noise – but with the ambiance of that quaint city our grandparents built buried in amongst the pastel-coated concrete.

For all my sarcasm about certain parts of the CBD, we have grown quite considerably over the past 200 years. The Adelaide City Council has been displaying photographs of the city in her early days – back when Trams ruled the city streets, when men wore suits to the corner deli, when women wore bathers from neck to ankle.

Adelaide has was originally built of solid-stone mansions that have since been either Heritage-listed or ripped down to build swanky look-likes. Our people haven’t changed. They still prefer to jump from the remains of the Glenelg Jetty to survive the summer heat despite Glenelg’s councils forewarning of the danger. Our youth still aspire to more, dream of better employment and wages, our population still asks their councilors for lower rates and more for their tax-dollars.

It would appear the Suburban councils are finally listening to their rate-payers: Our local icon, the stobie pole, are all slowly disappearing. ADSL+ is becoming more accessible thanks to towers interspersed without ruining the skyline. Paving is replacing the bituminous eucalypti-roots that travel beneath many roads. Potholes are filled in, blind-corners are being fixed on known death-traps around the city, and train-crossings are slowly being replaced with both under and overpasses.

That’s why I stay in Adelaide. Our mile-wide CBD won’t get any wider, only taller. Our people are more relaxed because the City is not encroaching on their homes. What could be better than this? But soon the scary day will arrive when Adelaide has ticky-tacky suburbs (like Oakden and Golden Grove!) from Cape Jervis to Balaclava. Then we will be come another Brisbane or Sydney!

For more details on what is happening around our small city, read through the many proposals and projects at transport.sa.gov.au. The biggest project I am aware of from my morning train-ride is the removal of the Bakewell Bridge over the Mile End Railway Station.

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