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Sunday, April 29, 2012

Bmag April 24th 2012 - 1000 ideas for Brisbane

Amid all the recent concern about crime in South East Queensland, it’s comforting and refreshing to see someone talking about positive ideas for the future of our city. And no, I’m not talking about any of the candidates for this Saturday’s local government elections. See what you think of these suggestions, then I’ll tell you who’s behind this month-long citywide brainstorming session:

• Moving libraries – trollies of books in King George Square and the Queen Street Mall where people can pick up pre-ordered books and return others as part of their commute;

• Free entry for locals to art exhibitions, if they bring a guest from interstate or overseas (proven by licence and postcodes);

• Have one day a year where people all wear a name tag and go out of their way to say hello to each other;

• Pop-up performances by members of our professional opera, theatre and ballet groups;

• Create a Brisbane war-cry to be chanted before all major sporting and cultural events.

These are just some of the ideas collected so far as part of an Australian Property Council campaign called Make Brisbane Work. The goal is no fewer than 1000 ideas! The Council’s Queensland division executive director Kathy MacDermott says: “The focus is creating a Brilliant Brisbane. Through collecting 1000 ideas, we aim to promote positive thinking and talking about how our cities need to change and grow.

“As you can see, there are some great concepts. We are looking for all sorts of ideas, big or small, practical or implausible. We want to hear them all!”

As the ideas are collected they will be published at brisbane and you’ll be able to vote for your favourite. There’s no guarantee that any of the 1000 suggestions, even the winning one, will become a reality straight away. But they could provide the kernel for someone, something, sometime in the future.

Here are some more of the ideas already submitted to the Make Brisbane Work website:

• A city flower farm in King George Square, cared for by groups of volunteers;

• A “self-expression corner” featuring large canvasses which, when completed, would be placed around building sites;

• Make Brisbane “The World’s Summer Suitless City”;

• A light beam from the top of City Hall that can be seen from Noosa to Coolangatta;

• A maze in the CBD;

• Make all tunnel tolls a standard $2;

• Free public transport in the CBD.

Local Logies

In the last issue of bmag, I lamented the loss (admittedly 28 years ago!) of local Logie Awards and asked you who would win Most Popular Male and Female personalities on Queensland TV if state-by-state Logies were still handed out.

Among those who responded was Dorothy Carroll, who emailed: “Spencer, I really enjoyed your column because I learnt about Queensland’s television heritage. The only name I knew and recognised was Jacki MacDonald and that was only because of Hey Hey It’s Saturday. I watch Bill McDonald and Georgie Lewis on Ten at 5pm followed by The Project and then turn over to the ABC for its 7pm News. On Sundays, I tend to watch Seven as the Flashback becomes a talking point amongst the family.”

Based on all your emails and Twitter comments, I can announce that the 2012 winners would have been (drum roll please!) – Bill McDonald (Ten News) and Jessica Van Vonderen (7.30 Queensland and ABC News weekends).

Try swapping

For the next 12 weeks, ABC radio presenters and listeners are teaming up with Diabetes Queensland to Swap It, Don’t Stop It. The idea is to make a series of small swaps in your life, both dietary and lifestyle, to hopefully decrease your waist measurement. Irrespective of height, if your waist is more than 80cm (women) or 94cm (men) you have an increased risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes and should do something about it.

Tune in to 612 ABC Brisbane between now and July for tips. Here’s one to get you started – hop off the bus one stop earlier. It won’t kill you to walk the extra few hundred metres. In fact, it might just save your life.

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