The next 6 months or so will see the final structure plans for both Bentleigh and Elsternwick – two of our major activity centres as well as the Caulfield Station precinct. Most of the published documentation thus far, and this includes the Housing Capacity analysis which accompanied the woeful Housing Strategy, is anything but convincing given that the draft proposals are mostly based on data from the 2016 census and not the latest 2021 figures. The 2021 census figures barely rate a mention. So we have the ludicrous situation where the future of the municipality is being determined on pre 2016 trends rather than what has been happening since 2016 and the import of this latest trend.

Yes, trends are important, but the overall council analyses thus far seems to have largely ignored what the 2021 census results reveal about the present and the recent past. In order to see exactly what has been happening in Glen Eira over the past 5 years, we have compiled the following tables, from the 2016 and 2021 census data. They provide a good insight into:

  • The continued and accelerating loss of detached housing
  • The continued increase in the number of single and two bedroom dog boxes which in most instances would not cater adequately for a family with kids. Families with children constitute the largest percentage of our population (48.2%) whilst couples without children represent 37.2%.
  • The failure to reduce car ownership so that council’s integrated transport strategy and the aspiration of a 50:50 mode share is literally a pipe dream. Yet, we still find that strategic planning and the stated intention to reduce car parking provisions is based on this unachievable target.
  • The number of properties has increased, but the number of dwellings WITHOUT CARS keeps going down.
  • A pie in the sky assertion that housing affordability can be improved by increasing site coverage, reducing permeability requirements, etc.
  • Travel to work data via public transport or cars cannot be taken seriously in the 2021 census given that this was at the height of COVID and just under 40% of residents in Glen Eira were working from home. We have however included the data.
  • The housing capacity analysis stated that many homes have ‘excess’ bedrooms. The data for both Elsternwick and Bentleigh shows that the number of persons per bedroom is on the rise. What this means is that in these activity centres amenity is sacrificed for density and very little is being built that will accommodate family living.

Please look through the following tables carefully and keep asking this council why they have steadfastly refused to include the most relevant data in their costly consultant reports!!!!