As a former British Prime Minister once said, 'A week is a long time in politics'.
This last week has seen the incumbent Lord Mayor Martin Haese withdraw from the Adelaide Council election altogether, and two new candidates, including Deputy Lord Mayor Sandy Verschoor, throw their hats in the ring.
Personally I am excited to see a number of candidates viewing our city through a cultural lens.
My key platform for seeking election as an Area Councillor for the City of Adelaide is the harnessing and enhancement of 'Culture', 'Commerce' and 'Community' as the core drivers of our city.
But what exactly does that mean?
To start with Culture...
As a director (over twenty years) of book publisher Wakefield Press, I know from experience how important creative endeavour is to the identity of a city. Whether through the arts, or our more tangible food and wine culture, we are what we produce...
and there is clearly a role for a capital city council to support creativity.
That contribution can be through the ongoing enhancement of the streets, squares, park lands, public spaces and venues where cultural activity occurs, but it can also be through initiating quality cultural projects and programs throughout the city, catering to all tastes and age groups.
For a fraction of the cost of a repavement or street upgrade, Adelaide Council could ramp up its support of theatrical and musical performances, book readings, film screenings and art exhibitions. This would bring people to the city all year around, support new bars, venues and pop-ups, activate heritage spaces and cultivate home grown creative enterprise along the way.
A creative city in turn stimulates innovation and experimentation in other spheres, assisting our knowledge economy to grow and to embrace the future.
We need to make the most of our 'Festival City' image, our UNESCO 'City of Music' status, and our unique and exceptional history, including Kaurna knowledge and stories.
In my view Adelaide Council has an important role to play in enhancing Adelaide's celebrated food and wine culture, rich heritage assets and emerging cultural precincts with classy cultural programming all year around.
Authorised by Stephanie Johnston B Arch St MURP MPIA M.ICOMOS
2/7 Sydney Place Adelaide SA 5000