Last night, Moray & Agnew Lawyers hosted a panel discussion with four of the top contenders for Melbourne’s next Lord Mayor - Sally Capp, Gary Morgan, Ken Ong and Jennifer Yang all shared their views on the future of Melbourne and its development.
The panel was moderated by Bill Papastergiadis, Moray & Agnew’s Melbourne Managing Partner, and President of the Melbourne Greek Community.
The event was held at the Greek Centre, and in his introduction, Bill Papastergiadis highlighted the significant role that the Greek community has played in the growth and culture of the City of Melbourne, and the importance of the Lonsdale Street location as a place that Greek Melbournians had been meeting and working for generations.
With an audience mostly comprising of guests with development, investment and business interests in Melbourne, the focus was on each of the candidate’s vison for our city, and particularly, what role further development of the city would play. Candidate’s opinions varied widely on the topic, with Sally Capp favouring transformational development of public spaces, and Gary Morgan looking to history to inform his view of the future.
The controversial development of the Queen Victoria Market was a contentious topic – Gary Morgan opposes the development, Ken Ong favours an alternate design to avoid the current objections, and Sally Capp wants to manage the project more closely in consultation with traders to set it up for commercial success.
Issues impacting the liveability of the city such as various strategies to tackle homelessness, use of our waterways, the Apple Store in Federation square, the sharp rise of Airbnb’s impact on apartments, bicycles and public transport links were also tackled. Both Jennifer Yang and Gary Morgan are focussed on changing the culture at Town Hall, with Gary pledging to “drain the Town Hall swamp”.
“There is no doubt that the outcome of this City of Melbourne By Election will impact development in a significant way” says Bill Papastergiadis. “It’s my view that this is crucial to get right – look at the Melbourne sky line today– where are the cranes? With population booming, we must be able to sensibly develop all underutilised parts of the City of Melbourne to full potential, and Town Hall plays a big part in the vision and implementation of this”.