A year of reckoning – 2023
The year is upon us. On behalf of the Kensington Association, greetings to all North-Westies.
For me, and I guess for many, the year doesn’t feel properly under way and “normal” until schools go back.
But what is “normal” now? Some talk about a “new normal” post-COVID. But we are not really “post-COVID”! Let’s just say that we are all, adults and children, grappling with a new set of circumstances and conditions.
The “bread and butter” issues for the Kensington Association (KA) concern the protection and enhancement of the existing amenity in Kensington, as well as the monitoring of development proposals effecting our built or natural environment. We often act as a conduit between government and community. That being said, our effectiveness in speaking for the community depends on participation from our community. We work in close partnership with other community organisations and with our Neighbourhood Partner from the City of Melbourne, Melanie del Monaco.
We have a monthly newsletter and a website, also regular column in the North West City News as well as the Flem-Ken News. We hope that our “information tree” provides enough opportunity for community members to participate and to be informed and empowered.
I’d like to share with the community what I see as the “agenda” for KA during 2023.
- As usual, on the top of our agenda is the need to scrutinise new developments; those around Macaulay Rd in particular. We can advocate, lobby, advise or make enquiry about issues that concern residents. Dealing with developers is challenging, and we sometimes feel relatively powerless, but we know we are listened to. We can strengthen any individual voices and provide good support and information. Most of the new large developments have commercial premises on the ground floor; we can certainly help advocate for community needs to be considered for these premises, and those in any other commercial developments.
- We will continue to monitor and advocate in relation to any ramifications from the Metro Rail Project (around Kensington South Station) and the Westgate Tunnel Project. The machinations around Moonee Ponds Creek are also something we continue to work on.
- We have resolved to keep a closer eye on the Future Melbourne Committee business.
- We have involvement in the Kensington Reconciliation Action Group, supporting the action for Voice and Treaty.
- We will be seeking to increase our social media presence, in particular to increase the action on our Facebook page to improve information flow.
- We will continue to work to increase our profile and active membership.
We know we do important work for the community; what I have said above needs emphasising – “our effectiveness in speaking for the community depends on participation from our community”. We know many people feel passionately about this part of Melbourne. We also know that some parts of Kensington are changing fast, and we need to adapt to emerging needs. We treasure community feedback! We want to know what is important to community members in the “new normal” of 2023. •