Terry Mackenroth’s call for planning check-ups
Controversially, he (Mackenroth) also had a stint as a lobbyist, which gained him and former federal politician Con Sciacca a $500,000 success fee to represent the now-failed BrisConnections infrastructure consortium for the $5bn Airport Link contract.
Prominent former Labor deputy premier and businessman Terry Mackenroth has called for regular reviews of Queensland’s planning and infrastructure codes to enable developers and governments to keep up with growth.
The long-serving Labor hardman who devised the 2005 South East Queensland Regional Plan — that mapped out land uses for the growing region — said five-yearly updates were necessary to keep on top of the changing region and maintain appropriate infrastructure construction.
Fresh from advising the new Palaszczuk Labor government on its transition to government plan, Mr Mackenroth told The Australian the document should be a 20-year rolling plan. “They need to ensure that the infrastructure plans are updated,” he said.
“It’s something which we started in 2005 as a 20-year vision and I think it’s something that needs a five-year review.
Mr Mackenroth, also a former Labor treasurer, has taken on the role of director of strategic development for the Springfield Land Corporation, the privately owned developer that owns large tracts of land across the southeast’s western corridor between Brisbane and Ipswich.
In this role he will oversee the development of new projects in the area — notably the transit-orientated development and community infrastructure — and liaise with government.
He said when the Goss government, of which he was a member, decided to underpin the Springfield corridor with legislation in 1992 there was some scepticism the developers could pull off the grand-scale project.
“It was a way of allowing them to prove themselves,” he said. “Maha (Sinnathamby) and Bob (Sharpless) have never moved away from the vision they had for here.” He is stepping down as a director for ASX-listed Devine Limited. “I really enjoyed my time there,” he said of his 9½ year tenure. “I went on when David Devine was there and he has moved on. I’ve enjoyed it and I have learned a lot.”
Mr Mackenroth said he would not join Mr Devine’s Metro Property Development if the apartment-builder listed on the ASX as widely expected later this year.
Since Mr Mackenroth retired from politics in 2005 he has filled a range of roles including with Lenard’s Chickens and a “love job” as the head of the community Clem Jones Centre.
Controversially, he also had a stint as a lobbyist, which gained him and former federal politician Con Sciacca a $500,000 success fee to represent the now-failed BrisConnections infrastructure consortium for the $5bn Airport Link contract.
From last July to March the 28-year parliamentary veteran worked with a Labor committee on the then-improbable task of overseeing a transition-to-government plan for the Annastacia Palaszczuk-led team of nine MPs.
Mr Mackenroth declined to comment on current events, and said despite rumblings from business about stagnation on major project decision-making, the government was progressing and would be able to pursue its legislative agenda through parliament.
“There will be arguments, there will be fights,” he said. “They will lose some votes, but it’s not the end of the world.”
“I would say that over the next three years there will probably be 150-200 pieces of legislation and if 10 of them don’t get passed, it’s not the end of the world.”
Ms Palaszczuk would make an intelligent and effective Premier.
“People short-changed her because people never gave her a chance,” he said. “Annastacia and (Deputy Premier) Jackie (Trad) are strong women and I think they’ll run that government well, very well. They have to be given the opportunity to do that.”