Fewer properties but consistent clearance rates point to a busy weekend
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Fewer properties but consistent clearance rates point to a busy weekend

There’s plenty of activity for motivated buyers on the Australian east coast

By KANEBRIDGE NEWS
Thu, Aug 3, 2023 11:01amGrey Clock 1 min

The number of auctions scheduled across Australia has fallen week-on-week, new figures show.

Data from CoreLogic shows that the number of properties across the combined capitals is down -7.7 percent for the first weekend in August, with a total of 1,821 expected to go under the hammer. However, figures are still a significant improvement on last year, up 23.8 percent on the same week in 2022 when 1,471 auctions took place and the clearance rate was just 56.6 percent.

Melbourne has experienced the biggest fall, with a -9.0 percent decrease on last week. However, the eastern capital will still see the most properties go to market, with 792 homes scheduled compared with 748 homes in Sydney. The difference is that Sydney figures have remained steady, with just one less home up for sale this week compared with the previous week. Auction figures in both cities are considerably higher than this time last year with data showing an increase of more than 25 percent.

In the smaller capitals, it’s a mixed bag. Brisbane is experiencing its quietest week since Easter with 86 homes scheduled, a significant drop from the previous week when 173 homes went to auction while  Adelaide has 105 homes set to go to market (nine less than last week). However, the nation’s capital is set for a busy weekend, with 81 homes scheduled in Canberra – the highest number of homes in nine weeks.

Figures in Perth are typically lower, with just seven auctions scheduled. It’s a similar story in tightly held Tasmania, with just two properties going to market this weekend.

Clearance rates from last week continue to show a steady winter auction market, the 64.9 percent of properties put to market resulting in a sale. This time last year, the clearance rate was just 54 percent.



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Wild cities and concrete corridors: How AI is reimagining the landscape

A new AI-driven account by leading landscape architect Jon Hazelwood pushes the boundaries on the role of ‘complex nature’ in the future of our cities

By Robyn Willis
Wed, Dec 6, 2023 2 min

Drifts of ground cover plants and wildflowers along the steps of the Sydney Opera House, traffic obscured by meadow-like planting and kangaroos pausing on city streets.

This is the way our cities could be, as imagined by landscape architect Jon Hazelwood, principal at multi-disciplinary architectural firm Hassell. He has been exploring the possibilities of rewilding urban spaces using AI for his Instagram account, Naturopolis_ai with visually arresting outcomes.

“It took me a few weeks to get interesting results,” he said. “I really like the ephemeral nature of the images — you will never see it again and none of those plants are real. 

“The AI engine makes an approximation of a grevillea.”

Hazelwood chose some of the most iconic locations in Australia, including the Sydney Opera House and the Harbour Bridge, as well as international cities such as Paris and London, to demonstrate the impact of untamed green spaces on streetscapes, plazas and public space.

He said he hopes to provoke a conversation about the artificial separation between our cities and the broader environment, exploring ways to break down the barriers and promote biodiversity.

“A lot of the planning (for public spaces) is very limited,” Hazelwood said. “There are 110,000 species of plants in Australia and we probably use about 12 in our (public) planting schemes. 

“Often it’s for practical reasons because they’re tough and drought tolerant — but it’s not the whole story.”

Hazelwood pointed to the work of UK landscape architect Prof Nigel Dunnett, who has championed wild garden design in urban spaces. He has drawn interest in recent years for his work transforming the brutalist apartment block at the Barbican in London into a meadow-like environment with diverse plantings of grasses and perennials.

Hazelwood said it is this kind of ‘complex nature’ that is required for cities to thrive into the future, but it can be hard to convince planners and developers of the benefits.

“We have been doing a lot of work on how we get complex nature because complexity of species drives biodiversity,” he said. 

“But when we try to propose the space the questions are: how are we going to maintain it? Where is the lawn?

“A lot of our work is demonstrating you can get those things and still provide a complex environment.” 

At the moment, Hassell together with the University of Melbourne is trialling options at the Hills Showground Metro Station in Sydney, where the remaining ground level planting has been replaced with more than 100 different species of plants and flowers to encourage diversity without the need for regular maintenance. But more needs to be done, Hazelwood said.

“It needs bottom-up change,” he said. ““There is work being done at government level around nature positive cities, but equally there needs to be changes in the range of plants that nurseries grow, and in the way our city landscapes are maintained and managed.”

And there’s no AI option for that. 

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