Articles on Cities & Policy

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Most transport resources are being used inefficiently. The Canberra Transport Photo shows the road space required to move 69 people using public transport, bicycles and private motor vehicles. Cycling Promotion Fund

Smart mobility alone is no substitute for strong policy leadership

Blind belief that new technology and disruptive innovation will fix congestion in our cities overlooks the need for strong leadership that supports progressive policy innovation.
We can make conscious decisions about how we live together in closer proximity that allow for both cultural diversity and a shared sense of community. Ján Jakub Naništa/Unsplash

Speaking with: Chris Ho and Edgar Liu about diversity and high density in our cities

Dallas Rogers speaks with Chris Ho and Edgar Liu about what's going on in apartment buildings as we move up, rather than out, and how we can look after ourselves and each other in culturally diverse, high-density living.
Airbnb’s likely impacts on people and their responses to it are related to their status as property owners, investors, prospective buyers or tenants. Justin Lane/EPA

Who wins and who loses when platforms like Airbnb disrupt housing? And how do you regulate it?

Short-term letting via digital platforms benefits some in the market at the expense of others. Closer regulation might be needed in Melbourne and Sydney, where a permissive approach prevails.
Conspicuous consumption is one of the main ways that China-born migrants come to mirror Australian society. Nils Versemann/Shutterstock

Chinese migrants follow and add to Australian city dwellers’ giant ecological footprints

Australian cities are world-leading – in the worst sense – for resource use and greenhouse emissions. China-born residents have embraced these consumption patterns, which is bad news for the planet.
They’re a long way from the traditional inner-city ‘Chinatowns’, but the suburbs are where you’ll find 21st-century China-born migrants settling. Jandrie Lombard/Shutterstock

Where are Chinese migrants choosing to settle in Australia? Look to the suburbs

China-born migrants in Australia's capital cities are becoming more suburban, but there are differences in settlement patterns between the biggest cities and smaller cities.
More than 25% of Hurstville residents were born in China, but the Sydney suburb is the exception to the rule. Philip Terry Graham/Flickr

How Australian cities are adapting to the Asian Century

This is the first article in our series, Australian Cities in the Asian Century, which looks at the impact of the rise of China and Chinese migration on our cities.
Barangaroo is a development on Sydney Harbour with strong green credentials, but it’s overwhelmingly the well-off who enjoy the benefits. Brendan Esposito/AAP

Making developments green doesn’t help with inequality

Barangaroo is an example of a development with admirable green credentials, but it is also an exclusive precinct that has played a role in displacing the disadvantaged from this part of Sydney.
Australian cities need to sustain higher levels of construction and to provide higher-density developments to ensure growing populations have access to affordable housing. Brendan Esposito/AAP

To make housing more affordable this is what state governments need to do

Governments should stop offering false hopes and pandering to NIMBY pressures. As well as increased public and private housing supply, growing cities need well-designed higher-density development.
Another election, another infrastructure promise – in the Andrews government’s case, a $50 billion suburban rail loop. Penny Stephens/AAP

Infrastructure splurge ignores smarter ways to keep growing cities moving

In the election bidding wars, parties commit billions to transport projects, often before all the work needed to justify these has been done. More cost-effective alternatives hardly get a look-in.
The TV drama SeaChange had a huge public impact, which made the town where it was filmed, Barwon Heads on Victoria’s Bellarine Peninsula, a highly desirable destination. Diana Plater/AAP

Imagining your own SeaChange – how media inspire our great escapes

We read about and watch other people moving to the coast or country and, in doing so, sometimes we're persuaded to join the seachangers and treechangers ourselves.
An impression of biodiversity sensitive urban design (BSUD) developed by the authors in collaboration with Mauro Baracco, Jonathan Ware and Catherine Horwill of RMIT’s School of Architecture and Design.

Here’s how to design cities where people and nature can both flourish

Australian cities are home to many threatened species but are also where biodiversity is being destroyed by development. But what if planning and design processes built nature into the urban fabric?
The community environment clearly has a large influence on child development, but exactly which factors are most important? Tracey Nearmy/AAP

Working out what makes a good community where young children can thrive

Research has started to identify the key factors in creating communities that promote good early childhood development.
Cairns has an extensive CCTV network, which as well as keeping homeless people under surveillance is sometimes used to help them. Andreina Schoeberlein/Flickr

Turning ‘big brother’ surveillance into a helping hand to the homeless

Surveillance often results in people who are homeless being the target of enforcement measures. But a new study in Cairns shows surveillance can also be used to achieve more positive social outcomes.
Significant investment in public transport is essential to ensure the Central City CBD can handle the predicted growth in commuting trips. Dean Lewins/AAP

Reimagining Sydney: this is what needs to be done to make a Central City CBD work

Central City 2048 proposes one new rail line, three metro lines and almost 300,000 extra jobs for the new CBD, one of three proposed for metropolitan Sydney. Clearly, the investment needed is massive.
Parramatta has been designated as the central CBD of three future city centres in the Greater Sydney region. haireena/Shutterstock

Reimagining Sydney with 3 CBDs: how far off is a Parramatta CBD?

The Greater Sydney metropolis is envisaged as having three CBDs by mid-century, but an assessment of the proposed Central City around Parramatta shows how much work is needed to make that a reality.

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