Urban planning community

+ Reply to thread
Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 32

Thread: Western Australia: lots of opportunities

  1. #1
    Member
    Registered
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Perth, Western Australia
    Posts
    15

    Western Australia: lots of opportunities

    I just wanted to draw some attention to my part of the world, Perth Western Australia where there are currently unprecedented opportunities for planners, especially senior planners.

    Perth is young and small, but growing fast. It's one of the most sprawling low density, car obsessed cities in the world, (almost as bad as Atlanta USA) but there's tonnes of opportunities to make a real difference in changing this. And our Planning minister behind serious improvement. If you want to make a real difference, please consider coming over and helping us.

  2. #2
    Member
    Registered
    Apr 2006
    Location
    boston, ma
    Posts
    15
    Hi,

    Can you direct us to any job listings or sources in Perth where an urban planner could explore job opportunities?

    thanks!

  3. #3
    Cyburbia Administrator Dan's avatar
    Registered
    Mar 1996
    Location
    Upstate New York
    Posts
    14,565
    Blog entries
    3
    Moderator note:
    The OP doesn't advertise a specific job, so I'm moving it to the Career Advice subforum. Sacha, I encourage you to post individual job listings for planning positions in WA in the Job Board subforum.

    jessaminakinamy: please don't make followup replies to posts in the Job Board subforum. If you are interested in a specific job that is listed, write to the poster.

  4. #4
    Cyburbian The District's avatar
    Registered
    Nov 2005
    Location
    New Hampshire Seacoast
    Posts
    374
    i'd be interested in emigrating to NZ and Australia. i know that planners are on NZ's "long term skill shortage list". the logistics of applying for a job down there seem implausible--how will i be interviewed? will they help with relocation? what advancement opportunities are there for ugly americans? thanks to the original poster for suggesting this (my wife and i are quite serious about heading down there), but any advice on these topics would make the process easier.

  5. #5
    Cyburbian Plus Salmissra's avatar
    Registered
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    4,082
    Quote Originally posted by The District View post
    i'd be interested in emigrating to NZ and Australia. i know that planners are on NZ's "long term skill shortage list". the logistics of applying for a job down there seem implausible--how will i be interviewed? will they help with relocation? what advancement opportunities are there for ugly americans? thanks to the original poster for suggesting this (my wife and i are quite serious about heading down there), but any advice on these topics would make the process easier.
    Wow, I'm in the same boat (I'd love to relocate, but hubby will only go to certain places), and NZ and Australia sound great. I'm full of some of the same questions that The District raises, though. And how long is the job employment process?

    If I get a job there, how hard would it be for my spouse to also find a job? I doubt that I'd make enough to support his dream of playing golf every day!
    "We do not need any other Tutankhamun's tomb with all its treasures. We need context. We need understanding. We need knowledge of historical events to tie them together. We don't know much. Of course we know a lot, but it is context that's missing, not treasures." - Werner Herzog, in Archaeology, March/April 2011

  6. #6
    Cyburbian The One's avatar
    Registered
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Where Valley Fever Lives
    Posts
    7,221

    Just my luck....

    Quote Originally posted by Salmissra View post

    If I get a job there, how hard would it be for my spouse to also find a job? I doubt that I'd make enough to support his dream of playing golf every day!
    Where were you when I was single???? ha ha ha.....seriously.....a lucky man you have.....
    Skilled Adoxographer

  7. #7
    Cyburbian
    Registered
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Island-State Republic of Singapore
    Posts
    162
    Can't say much for NZ, but as for Oz...

    Check out the PIA website: www.planning.org.au, which has a list of employment opportunities.

    Another one to help you out: http://www.jobsinplanning.com/

    In terms of migration, there have been recent changes to the immigration system. The website's at www.immi.gov.au

    Interestingly, planners are not on the national skill shortage list but are in the individual state skill shortage list. But there are a few states, notably Victoria, WA, Tasmania and South Australia, which has this 'state-sponsored skilled migration programme'. You can try to apply via that - many planners do, as urban planners are considered 'in-demand' professionals in these 4 states.

    Also all the states in Oz have different planning systems. Some places offer refresher courses or even online courses (http://www.eclassroom.com.au/) to help you understand the planning system in the various states you wish to go to.

    Whether there will be help with relocation is dependent on the employer you have. It is unlikely that you can get employment by being overseas, but there are some places teaming with jobs once you reach. To give you an example, in my graduate cohort from the University of Melbourne in 2005 (about 27 of us), approx 25 got jobs before graduated. One who didn't get was working parttime somewhere else, while the other was an international student who wanted to settle her PR issues first. (I got mine on a employer-sponsored visa, but had to work in the country for a year).

    Some of the large private firms hiring planners include:
    Urbis
    EDAW
    Connell Wagner
    GHD
    ARUP
    Hassell
    Hansen Partnerships

    Else state government, local governments would be the alternative choice.

    If you get your hands on a copy of PIA's Planning News (by state) or Australian Planner (nationally), you can see who are the key players in the planning fields by the adverts they put.

    If you're interested in the Vic system specifically, you can PM me.

  8. #8
    Cyburbian JNL's avatar
    Registered
    Jul 2002
    Location
    Wellington, NZ
    Posts
    2,447
    Check out http://www.nzplanning.co.nz/default.asp

    I have several good friends who are Americans who have immigrated here. They're not planners, but if you had any general questions about life in NZ I could put you in touch.

  9. #9
    Cyburbian Rem's avatar
    Registered
    Jun 2003
    Location
    NSW, Australia
    Posts
    1,530
    Quote Originally posted by The District View post
    i'd be interested in emigrating to NZ and Australia. i know that planners are on NZ's "long term skill shortage list". the logistics of applying for a job down there seem implausible--how will i be interviewed? will they help with relocation? what advancement opportunities are there for ugly americans? thanks to the original poster for suggesting this (my wife and i are quite serious about heading down there), but any advice on these topics would make the process easier.
    Interviews we have conducted telephone interviews regularly (and video link interviews occasionally) for OS candidates.

    Skills shortage many employers have suffered from chronic shortages in Australia over a number of years. There simply aren't enough planners in the system nationally. Western Australia is doubly affected because of a resources boom fuelling a property boom. My employer is currently well staffed because we took a decision about three years ago to do whatever it took to get our staff numbers back up (we pay above industry standard, we provide cars to all qualified planners, we have generous education support programs, we have much better paid leave arrangements than the US).

    Advancement in 99.9% of Australian workplaces advancement will be on merit and related to competence and opportunity. Being an ugly American won't hold you back.

    Immigration is painful and complicated - sorry. Many people find it worthwhile though and provided you really know what you are getting into (ie. not some idealised, tourism advertisement version of down-under) I think most people would find life in Australia or New Zealand pretty easy to take.

    Examples one of our staff is from Oregon - I will see if I can lure him on to the boards to give you a perspective on his experience.

    JNL hello stranger.

  10. #10
    Cyburbian ruralplanner's avatar
    Registered
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Rural Midwest
    Posts
    139
    Planning in Australia… what a great new spot on Cyburbia! For the past year I have been looking around Australia for short-term opportunities to gain experience and of course do a bit of networking while I was at it- for that future full time opportunity! Earlier this year I was approved for a job exchange and was in the initial stages of setting it up for (our) Spring 2009, which was later revoked for reasons unrelated to this post. So... I have now decided that I would use my own time to find an opportunity that may prove useful for both parties—sort of an exchange of ideas. And now I have over 5 weeks of vacation accumulated to do it.

    As far as I can figure out, immigration seems daunting to say the least and I’d have to think that a potential employer would not even consider a foreign planner if they did not have this part of the equation figured out. So I am still trying to figure it out, but am having a hard time. About all I know for sure if that I will need an offer for a full time job and most likely sponsorship to move.

    Meanwhile, I’m still taking the process one step at a time and have given myself 5 years to get there—that is-- a full time position and a new home in a new Country. If I’m not there by then, I’ll just figure I not wanted, or was too picky about the particular job, or my sights on where I want to relocate in Australia are too high.

    I have been asked the question of what I hope to expect in Australia and frankly all I want is the experience right now. However if I had the opportunity to move, the location and type of community I would consider would have to be at least equal to or better than what I have now. While that is not impossible, it is a limitation. But a reality is that the only way I could ever convince my family to leave this place we are at now, is some guarantee of a better place and in the end a better life. If I can do that and find a job I like, then making the move is a real possibility.

  11. #11
         
    Registered
    May 2008
    Location
    City of Lake Macquarie, NSW, Australia
    Posts
    20
    I am a Planner who has migrated to Australia a

    Timing
    The move to Australia is not easy but planners are a patient variety which understand that good outcomes always require considerable effort. For me, the immigration process took 2 years to negotiate.

    It would be my recommendation that prior to considering the immigration process, a visit would be a great idea. The visit will allow you to see what the country is like while also providing an opportunity to speak to citizens about life here. It is helpful to talk with Australians away from the tourist areas because that is where you can investigate the aspects that matter most like education, housing, cost of living etc. Just as it is in America, the “tourist traps” bring the rich and raucous so when you are looking for life-changing details, you will want to speak with the natives.

    For myself, I came to Australia on three separate occasions over the course of a few years before deciding to migrate.

    Migrant path

    There are many opportunities for migration to Australia but each of the paths takes time. Be prepared to mail off your passport and provide plenty of personal details because your finances, health and history will be scrutinized. You will have to undergo a criminal background search by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Most of the migration process can be accomplished by mail, the exception of course being the physical. The Australian Government contracts with only one or two physicians in each U.S. State to perform the physical. If you are over the age of 50, plan to receive a more “in-depth” examination.

    Once you are through the process, you will receive a pleasant letter from the Australian Government to welcome you to your new home. Your passport will adorn a visa page with specific dates. You have a 90-day window to arrive.
    Following your entry into Australia, the visa is conditional for the first two years. You would then need to file documents for permanent status.

    A final note about “qualification” as this is an important aspect for gaining employment within a professional level position in Australia. Qualification documents that you have the education, experience and ability to hold a professional position. On the Government Immigration website, there is a link to an organisation where you can forward your sealed transcripts and have a recognised evaluation of qualification. While there is cost involved, the process serves to organise an “apples to apples” analysis. The certification is recognised by the Government and employers. As mentioned previously by Colleagues, visit the Planning Institute of Australia (PIA) website to pursue professional certification.

    Planning positions for migrant planners

    Having been a planner in California and Oregon, I was curious as to what the profession would entail in Australia. I found it well worth the effort to research the applicable regulations while also scanning the web for prospective employers.
    Interestingly, I found my job through good old-fashioned “networking” on a golf course. I asked one of my friends in Australia; an avid golfer to enquire with his buddies about potential employers. As it happens, several of the gentlemen worked for either private development firms or local government and they were very open to discuss which employers had the best environment and benefits.

    Following some further investigation, I narrowed my preferred list to three and sent of an application to each. All of the entities interviewed me over the telephone but in the end, I selected the one that really felt like a perfect match.

    There are plenty of positions available for planners here in Australia but it is best to wait until you obtain a visa (out of courtesy to all parties). The private sector positions pay better but of course there is an expectation that you commit extra effort to get the task out on time. The government positions are cherished because they offer flexibility in the workplace hours and other benefits such as education enhancement and a car for personal use.

    I have found the Australian population to be very tolerant to diversity and there is a mindset here of “giving it a fair go”. What this means is that you will be afforded opportunities in every aspect of life. You will not be singled out or discriminated upon due to race, religion, nationality or other personal aspect.

    Consider taking a lesser position if necessary to establish yourself while going through the learning process. Career advancement is based upon merit.

    What is life like after the move?

    Life is good here in Australia and I can say that Australians are kind and fun-loving people.

    Wildlife is abound here, plenty of loud squawky birds year-round. The snakes and spiders can be killers but as long as you respect them and their homes, every creature can live in peace.

    The climate is good as it is never too hot or cold for extended periods.

    Water is a valuable commodity here and is rationed in most communities. There is an active effort by government for private homes to install rainwater tanks that is used for toilet flushing and yard irrigation. I always wondered what those big corrugated tanks were in the movies about Australia and now I know.

    The cost of living is expensive when compared to the U.S. Gasoline is presently the equivalent of $5.50 US per gallon.

    Every child attending school across Australia wears a uniform and the communities know who is attending which school based upon the uniform material colours and patterns. There is about a 50/50 ratio of students attending private verses public schools.

    Medical care is social medicine that gives basic service to the entire population. Unless you are spurting blood, plan on waiting to been seen for most ailments. The good side of social medicine is that should you be overcome by major illness, the government will take care of you. There is a national transition towards private health insurance but I have yet to sign up since I am saving more money here. I was accustomed to $1,100 per month for coverage in America.

    There is no shortage of tax. Aside from the typical property tax (called rates), there is income tax and a 10% value added tax to all goods. When you buy a vehicle or house, be prepared to pay stamp duty (another word for tax). The positive side of the tax is that the population is cared for and basic infrastructure is good.

    In retrospect…

    The choice to migrate was a good one as it has allowed my family to live a balanced lifestyle. I would do it all again.
    Last edited by NHPlanner; 09 May 2008 at 8:25 AM.

  12. #12
    Cyburbian Rem's avatar
    Registered
    Jun 2003
    Location
    NSW, Australia
    Posts
    1,530
    Quote Originally posted by ruralplanner View post
    Planning in Australia… immigration seems daunting to say the least and I’d have to think that a potential employer would not even consider a foreign planner if they did not have this part of the equation figured out....
    RP - it probably wouldn't hurt to lodge your CV with one of the larger consulting firms in Australia, Connell Wagner. In the "Rewarding Careers" area of their web site, they specifically invite those canvassing for jobs to nominate their citizenship status and ask if they are seeking sponsorship.

  13. #13
    Cyburbian zman's avatar
    Registered
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Colorado
    Posts
    9,025
    Blog entries
    2
    Off-topic:
    I checked just out of curiosity, how long the shortest flight (considering time) from Denver, CO to Perth, W.A. would take just to get me there.

    3 flights:

    Denver- Los Angeles

    Los Angeles to Melbourne

    Melbourne to Perth

    28 hours

    That may be too far for a lot of people.
    You get all squeezed up inside/Like the days were carved in stone/You get all wired up inside/And it's bad to be alone

    You can go out, you can take a ride/And when you get out on your own/You get all smoothed out inside/And it's good to be alone
    -Peart

  14. #14
    OH....IO Hink's avatar
    Registered
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Hang on Sloopy...land
    Posts
    9,815
    I flew to Melbourne a couple years ago and enjoyed every minute of it. The flight was rough- Chicago to LAX, LAX to Sydney, Sydney to Melbourne, but I slept most the time. I found Sydney and Melbourne to be both a bit like British planning, but more organic.

    I would love to move to the Melbourne area and start planning, but I don't think the Ms. would be up for it, and I think as my parent age, they would not want me so many miles away... here's to dreaming
    A common mistake people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools. -Douglas Adams

  15. #15
    OH....IO Hink's avatar
    Registered
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Hang on Sloopy...land
    Posts
    9,815
    ps. I realize that Melbourne is on the East Coast, but thought I would add. I would imagine that water restrictions are much worse and planning is much more crucial on the West Coast. Although it would seem that with most the population on the East coast, growth would be there. Am I close?
    A common mistake people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools. -Douglas Adams

  16. #16
    Cyburbian ruralplanner's avatar
    Registered
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Rural Midwest
    Posts
    139
    Quote Originally posted by Siskiyou View post
    The choice to migrate was a good one as it has allowed my family to live a balanced lifestyle. I would do it all again.
    That's what I'm thinking about-- Finding a balanced lifestyle. While we really have it good where we are at- it's out of balance. Rem said that living in Australia is pretty easy to take. While I have not gotton there yet to see for myself, much of what I have read seems to portray this to be true. BTW Rem, thanks for the input, however I am a public sector planner all the way.

  17. #17
    Cyburbian
    Registered
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Island-State Republic of Singapore
    Posts
    162
    Firstly, I thought it might be good to move this thread to the Planning in Australia.

    In any case, there are alot of articles in The Age, which is the local newspaper, on how planning impacts the city, etc. Quite alot of controversy, including the water rationing issues. Check out www.theage.com.au.

    In any case, here's one that was printed today:

    http://www.theage.com.au/news/editor...e#contentSwap1

    I've shortened the article to the first few paras, as it's quite lengthy and also copyright issues...

    Melbourne: future shock or future planned?

    "A GOVERNMENT that plans growth by a generational timeframe is to be commended. A government that stands still as time goes rushing past it is to be condemned. Where does the Victorian Government fit in? Somewhere between the two.

    In the planning of Melbourne, growth projections are at risk of being outdated simply because the present is moving so fast. No better illustration of this can be found in the planning blueprint 2030. It may have been released only six years ago, but such has been the speed of developments across so many areas that it can no longer be reliably used as a foundation on which to build a city's future.

    Today The Age concludes a week-long series of articles in which the challenges facing Melbourne were examined in the context of the 2030 strategy. The articles — on transport, housing, health, education, culture, water, energy and prosperity — showed overwhelmingly that what was vision in 2002 has now lost its focus. This is not so much shortsightedness, for the planners cannot be blamed in not seeing the huge surge in population. Nevertheless, the Government will be judged on how it reacts to those changed conditions....."

  18. #18
    Cyburbian
    Registered
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Island-State Republic of Singapore
    Posts
    162
    Quote Originally posted by Hink_Planner View post
    ps. I realize that Melbourne is on the East Coast, but thought I would add. I would imagine that water restrictions are much worse and planning is much more crucial on the West Coast. Although it would seem that with most the population on the East coast, growth would be there. Am I close?
    Actually, although Melbourne is on the East Coast, it has been in worse drought situation than Sydney. There is a remarkable difference on the drought conditions just being along the East Coast. Unfortunately, I'm not sure about what's happening in the West to share much.

    Separately, and also interestingly, Melbourne has the highest growth rate of the various capital cities over the last year. It even caught the planning and government officials by surprise. Check out my previous post above.

    Hope this helps.

  19. #19
    Member
    Registered
    Mar 2008
    Location
    vancouver, BC, Canada
    Posts
    8
    Is the planning job market looking at a slow down in the next few years? To my understanding the major universities have freed up more spaces for planning and the gap is being narrowed (demand-supply). Any comments?

  20. #20
    Cyburbian Rem's avatar
    Registered
    Jun 2003
    Location
    NSW, Australia
    Posts
    1,530
    Quote Originally posted by Hink_Planner View post
    ps. I realize that Melbourne is on the East Coast, but thought I would add. I would imagine that water restrictions are much worse and planning is much more crucial on the West Coast. Although it would seem that with most the population on the East coast, growth would be there. Am I close?
    The drought has pretty much broken - we have moved from el Nino conditions to la Nina. Some areas haven't yet received rain but the prognosis is good. The last drought lasted 7 years in most places and water rationing became extreme for some. One large inland City (Goulburn) got to down to 12% of total storage. Sydney was hovering around 30% - is now back >60%. In the city Siskyou and I live in, we were blessed and had no water restrictions at all (good watershed planning and management coupled with some luck). Other areas had to import water from previously untapped areas. Some industries were shut down because they couldn't get enough water without exhausting domestic supplies.

    The west got through the drought generally better than the east coast, however, they are building Australia's first large scale desalination plant (desal is very controversial in Australia - a former NSW Premier called it electricity in a bottle) and their growth rates are very high (coming off lower base populations). WA does indeed have lots of headaches with water but they seem to be managing OK. The areas not coping so well are the really big cities (Sydney/Melbourne) where you can't increase catchments, storages are controversial to say the least for their environmental impacts, retrofitting is expensive ...... etc. Re-use systems are becoming more often. In a previous life I worked on an area that was to have the first grey water (treated sewage) reticulation system in Australia. It is in Sydney and has been operating now since about 1992.

    The boom states for growth are WA and Queensland, Victoria & NT are steadily growing, NSW has modest growth, Tasmania and SA are stagnant or declining (SA is another state with constant water headaches).

  21. #21
    Member
    Registered
    May 2008
    Location
    Denver, CO
    Posts
    2

    Australian Planning

    Like so many on this forum, I too am looking at the possibility of a move to Australia. Considering my wife is an RN, I don't expect issuance of Visas to be too troublesome though.

    However, I do expect there to be a bit of a learning curve on the regulatory process. For those interested, I came across a course on Planetizen's website which might be worth taking. Anyone familiar with this course?

    www.planetizen.com/courses/australia

  22. #22
         
    Registered
    May 2008
    Location
    City of Lake Macquarie, NSW, Australia
    Posts
    20

    Australian Planning

    [QUOTE=haakm;438377] For those interested, I came across a course on Planetizen's website which might be worth taking. Anyone familiar with this course?

    planetizen.com/courses/australia

    I have not heard of anyone that has taken the course but after checking out the website, it appears to be a well-rounded introduction that won't break the bank.

    The instructor bio identifies that he received training at University of New England which is an institution with significant links to the planning community. A few years ago when I was investigating how to obtain the Australian PIA credential from the American AICP credential, the Planning Institute of Australia specifically recognised a course at the University of New England as a satisfactory method of becoming familar with the relevant regulations. The course does require you to physically attend the campus and therefore you are required to obtain a visa but it might be a good way to come for a visit...perhaps writing off the educational expense on your IRS return.

    I imagine that other universities in Australia may offer courses recognised by the Planning Institute of Australia and they would likely be identified on the PIA website.

  23. #23
    Member
    Registered
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Perth, Western Australia
    Posts
    23
    Thanks for bringing W.A. into the light Sacha.

    I'm currently studying at Curtin doing the urban and regional course, but I am looking forward to getting into the industry and getting some hands-on experience.

    I heard the DPI, from PIA emails, is looking to recruit 50 planners of varying experience in the future. Sounds good!

  24. #24
    Member
    Registered
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Perth, Western Australia
    Posts
    23
    Quote Originally posted by Siskiyou View post
    I imagine that other universities in Australia may offer courses recognised by the Planning Institute of Australia and they would likely be identified on the PIA website.
    Curtin is apparently the only university to do a PIA endorsed course in W.A. I believe, according to the 2007 subject guide anyway.

    I heard UWA is trying to get endorsed, but isn't quite there yet.

  25. #25
    Cyburbian urbanrenewal's avatar
    Registered
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Rural Victoria, Australia
    Posts
    31
    Quote Originally posted by karl_stade View post
    Curtin is apparently the only university to do a PIA endorsed course in W.A. I believe, according to the 2007 subject guide anyway.

    I heard UWA is trying to get endorsed, but isn't quite there yet.
    I know what you mean, but not being accredited by the Planning Institute does not mean a course is deficient! Indeed, as I see PIA as an in-club and not that visionary, I'm be more interested in course that are not accredited.

    DB

+ Reply to thread
Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

More at Cyburbia

  1. G'day from Western Australia!
    Introduce Yourself
    Replies: 6
    Last post: 30 Jan 2012, 9:59 AM
  2. Replies: 3
    Last post: 03 Feb 2010, 9:09 AM
  3. Replies: 4
    Last post: 21 Dec 2009, 10:17 PM
  4. Replies: 6
    Last post: 15 Sep 2009, 10:53 PM
  5. Job opportunities in regional Australia?
    Career Development and Advice
    Replies: 7
    Last post: 23 Sep 2008, 8:21 PM