Cities

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The Western Distributor project announced by the Andrews government will benefit Melbourne’s suburban residents in the west and north, but inner-city elites are mobilising against it. AAP/Melissa Meehan

Inner-city bias: the suburbs need a fair go

It's a project that creates benefits for Melbourne's western suburbs and the state as a whole. But the inner-city elite don't like it and recent experience suggests their opinion holds sway.
In a citizens' jury, difficult issues are passionately but respectfully discussed by a cross-section of people from the community. NHS Citizen Assembly

City calls on jury of its citizens to deliberate on Melbourne’s future

A citizens' jury has been working to refresh the Future Melbourne strategy. It's part of a broader shift from government decision-making for communities to decision-making with communities.
China has the most extensive high-speed rail network in the world, which has helped reduce the nation’s greenhouse gas emissions. Jason Lee/Reuters

High-speed rail? At $200 billion we’d better get it right

High-speed rail is now a well-established technology and Australia needs it, as long as the project ticks all the boxes needed to deliver both private and public benefits.
From its earliest days, the influx of outsiders created the distinctive urban character that has driven the development of Shanghai into a modern metropolis. Wenjie, Zhang/flickr

Shanghai, a modern metropolis born of a refugee crisis

From its earliest days as a haven for refugees, Shanghai developed a distinctive character and urban identity that have driven its emergence as one of the world's great metropolises.
By persuading some drivers to travel a different route or at a different time, congestion charges can dramatically improve the flow of traffic. AAP/Andrew Brownbill

How to make cities work better – here’s what the government needs to do

Bigger cities increase wages, output and innovation, but also problems of congestion and pollution. Congestion charges can minimise these problems by dramatically improving traffic flows.
Changing a centuries-old format will take some big thinking. vittoriocarvelli/DeviantArt

Making the case for a new Olympics model

With the one-city format no longer viable, an Olympics expert proposes a radical new vision for the format of the Olympic Games. It actually makes a lot of sense.
Planting trees can make cities more desirable and safer places to live in. Joe Castro/AAP.

Greening cities makes for safer neighbourhoods

Not only do healthy, well-maintained trees provide shade and benefit the ecosystem, they can have a meaningful social impact: people in newly greened neighbourhoods start to look out for each other.
Three more years for Malcolm Turnbull and the Coalition. AAP/David Moir

Election 2016: what will a re-elected Coalition government mean for key policy areas?

What's in store for key policy areas, from health to education to infrastructure to asylum seekers, under a returned Coalition government?
Uber may open cities from taxi oligopolies, but ultimately it closes them off to the possibility of more meaningful alternatives. Scott L/flickr

How Uber opens cities only to close them

Uber actively encloses what could be a more open city in which riders and drivers work to benefit city residents.
In addition to a shortage of public toilets, current innovations in their design may not be suitable for an ageing population. AAP/City of Sydney

Caught short: we need to talk about public toilets

Millions of people need to be confident that suitable public toilets will be available when they leave their homes. A shortage of such facilities is a serious problem for an ageing population.

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