It’s easy to spot the similarities in how this first Labor budget and its Coalition predecessors approached transport projects. Their eye-watering spending isn’t supported by proper assessments.
There’s more spending on small local projects, so does it follow that it’s ‘pork-barrelling’? A new report shows what really matters is if the money is allocated under objective, transparent criteria.
Anthony Albanese’s plan for high-speed rail between Sydney and Newcastle could well be worth the cost, so long as he doesn’t muddy it with 1970s-style industry policy.
Food inflation figures in Nigeria give cause for concern. Accusing fingers are pointed at rising dollars, farmers and middlemen, but this expert says the can may have been placed on the wrong heads.
While the road toll has come down over the decades, it’s largely a result of fewer car occupants dying. Pedestrian deaths have barely changed for a decade, but they remain a road safety blind spot.
Three big firms win almost all the $1 billion-plus contracts. And they often team up in joint ventures, further reducing the competition that would keep the price tags of road and rail projects down.
The pervasive impacts of infrastructure projects on public health are often overlooked. New research is teasing out the many ways Melbourne’s level-crossing removals will affect people’s health.
Delivery riders are paying the ultimate price for the fact that our cities, their infrastructure and the rules governing them make cycling much more dangerous than it should be.
Investing more in cycling and walking would boost both physical and economic health, with a typical return of $5 for every $1 spent on cycling infrastructure.
Governments are throwing billions of taxpayer dollars on stimulus measures after COVID-19. But they must do it diligently, and transparently.
Only the inner suburbs of Melbourne and other capital cities meet the 20-minute neighbourhood test. But we could transform the other suburbs for much less than the cost of current transport projects.
States across Australia are increasingly using market-led proposals to build infrastructure. The emerging problems reflect the inherent risks of projects that bypass proper public planning processes.
Are debates about e-scooters too narrow? Perhaps it is time to focus more on revitalising urban spaces and retrofitting road infrastructure.
Unsolicited market proposals are not transparently assessed. Infrastructure should be built to serve the public interest, not shaped by its private backers, but the checks to ensure this are broken.
Faced with the eye-watering costs of building infrastructure, it makes sense to turn to much more cost-effective smart technology to get traffic flowing.
A breakdown in the road or rail systems often causes commuter chaos in Australia. Some overseas cities are more resilient because they have other options – and our bicycle network could give us that.
Some countries have already committed to using electric aircraft on domestic routes. These aircraft could slash costs and emissions on some of Australia’s busiest flight routes.
The Coalition’s infrastructure budgets over this term of government have been around the midpoint of government investment over the past decade. But how projects are chosen leaves a lot to be desired.
Despite boasts of ‘record’ infrastructure spending, relative to GDP it’s comparable to previous budgets. What’s different is that Treasurer Frydenberg has chanced his arm more over the longer term.
The focus on roads reflects the fact that this infrastructure program lags well behind the growth of our biggest cities, resulting in less-than-ideal transport patterns.