Uninviting, car-dominated streets, like this one in Melbourne, reduce our experience menu by discouraging beneficial activities like walking and sharing places with other people.
If the menu of potential activities that do us good is made to look uninviting or challenging, we are more likely to choose the easier but less healthy option.
Shepparton residents are clearly disadvantaged by having far fewer daily train services to Melbourne than other regional centres.
Regional areas are expanding, and yet not enough attention is being paid to improving rail access to capital cities. This affects the liveability of the areas.
Originating in the Netherlands, the concept of ‘woonerfs’, areas designed to invite walking, playing, socialising and cycling while curbing motor vehicles, has spread to cities in other countries, including Berlin.
All around us, the places we inhabit send us physical and visual cues that influence our behaviour. Good design can tilt the balance so our surroundings help us act in ways that fulfil our needs.
Health objectives are at last being integrated into all levels of planning in New South Wales, from cities and towns to local places and buildings.
The connections between city planning and health are many and varied, but getting health objectives integrated into all aspects of planning in New South Wales has been a long struggle.
Having to own multiple cars comes at a cost to the finances and health of residents in the sprawling outer suburbs.
One of the most effective ways to reduce health inequalities across Australia is to design neighbourhoods that free residents from having to rely on cars for transport.
For suburbs like fast-growing Tarneit in the Wyndham area, ‘hard’ infrastructure gets priority, leaving ‘soft’ social infrastructure to catch up later.
Traditionally, new communities first get hard infrastructure – schools, hospitals, transport – and 'soft' social infrastructure comes later. Liveability and public health suffer as a result.
In Melbourne, Adelaide and Sydney, just over a third of dwellings are within 400 metres of a public transport stop with services every 30 minutes, but the proportions are much lower in other cities.
Governments, developers and urban planners all aspire to create liveable cities. Yet when it comes to Australian cities, the rhetoric and reality don’t quite match.
The Greening the Pipeline 100-metre pilot park at Williams Landing is the first step in transforming 27 kilometres of the heritage-listed main outfall sewer into a linear park and bike track.
Greening the Pipeline, courtesy of Melbourne Water
Tree plantings are making a visible difference to Melbourne’s west. It's the result of a collaborative model of greening, one that Australian cities need to apply more widely.
While parts of Australian capital cities are highly liveable, access to the features that underpin liveability is highly unequal.
The challenge of creating liveable communities across Australia's capital cities comes down to seven key factors. And assessed on this basis, parts of our cities don't fare so well.
Staying physically active can play a big part in ageing well – and a well-designed neighbourhood helps with that.
Our ageing population presents several social and economic challenges, particularly for the health sector. Physical activity can tackle many of these.