Editor, The News:
Here we go with another council wasting, time and money trying to get the Albion Flats out of the ALR for shopping.
The era of the mall is dead. Online retailing, with its greater choices and lower prices, ensures it.
We need to completely rethink our commercial spaces, of which we already have plenty of derelict ones that could be redeveloped.
The malls we already have feel empty with little to offer. Small service-oriented commercial, unique restaurants, may be the only brick and mortar that survive.
With our current telecommunications, we have little need of office space. I currently telecommute for a big company and when I do go in, the offices are almost completely empty.
We telecommute because we have people and teams all over the place and meet online because it is nearly impossible to gather everyone in one place.
This is the future and our council needs to get out of the old-style mentality.
As for the Albion Flats being unused, well, they are in the agricultural reserve. You know, like a reserve tank of gas, or reserve money in an account, to be used as insurance.
As our population grows, as land in other places becomes more arid, and as more and more people rediscover the quality that can only come from locally produced food, our agricultural properties are going to be even more important.