VIRUS IN THE HIGH RISE: NO SURPRISE

Sustainable Australia MP Clifford Hayes says the Premier’s decision to lock down nine high rise towers due to COVID-19 transmission is all the proof he needs that the Government’s obsession with high-density, rapid population
growth is counterproductive to beating this disease.

In Parliament on June 3, Mr Hayes asked Health Minister Jenny Mikakos:

"I refer to the property industry clicking its fingers with calls for more fast-tracking of development and cutting red tape and the government’s obedient compliance with the announcement last week of fast-tracking for the CBD towers of 68 storeys, 41 storeys, 21 storeys and 20 storeys, as well as calling in from VCAT a $250 million development at Station Street, Caulfield, for even more high-rise office space. Was the health minister or the chief health officer consulted concerning either the risk of spreading coronavirus or the exposure to future pandemics which these high-density residential and office
buildings may well generate?"

Her response was telling; “No.”

Comments attributable to Sustainable Australia MP Clifford Hayes:
“The Premier conceded that people in these buildings are sharing the same hallways, the same lifts, the same laundry areas, but it is his Government that has advocated for high rise, high-density development in Melbourne.”

“The risk of spreading Coronavirus or the exposure to future pandemics which these high-density residential and office buildings will generate is immense.”

“We need to re-learn the lesson that dense population is not healthy or safe, and we now need to push back against the property industry and planners who tell us all that we should live on top of each other in apartments.”