Call to arms for Brookfield - 16th August 2007

Officially Brisbane’s richest non-city, non-riverfront suburb, Brookfield’s appeal is undeniable. The initial drawcards are obvious: lovely homes, large blocks, semi-rural environs, 13km proximity to the CBD. But the less obvious, more intangible drawcard of ‘community’ could well be the keystone holding aloft the other criteria. Though geographically exclusive in terms of its two-roads-only access, Brookfield is not cut-off from the issues and challenges facing its surrounding suburbs. Many of the big issues currently swirling about – the Western Bypass hot potato and the proposed need for a second public high school west of Kenmore - warrant a united voice from the Brookfield community. Is it time for Brookfield to form a community development group or progress association? The answer could lie in the recent experience of another (once) lovely suburb defined by semi-rural quaintness: Jindalee. Community opposition about the enormous DFO development and its potential for traffic and parking chaos, especially on weekends, mounted quickly after the bulldozers moved in. But of course, it was all too late. Somehow the project’s application had slipped beneath the radar of relevant community interests and before anyone knew what was happening, DFO construction was underway. It is scheduled to open in November. If Brookfield wants to stay on top of such development applications and in doing so preserve the quality of life it has paid handsomely to live within, then perhaps a formal development or progress group should be on the cards? I’d love to know what you think. Until next week … Gerard Baden-Clay, Principal Century 21 Westside