Earlier this year in late May, the Infrastructure Australia Audit released by the government urged we consider future bloating population demands when it comes to cityscape & urban planning, and invest in green and sustainable building and housing initiatives to ensure environmental preservation & maintain our high standard of living as the population continues to swell.
By 2031, Australia is expected to be home to 30.5 million people and our cities are forecast to increase their contributions to the Australian economy by 90% ($1.6 trillion)!
The Audit Report contains expert opinion and analysis from Australia’s ‘city building’ industry leaders & policy makers to get to the crux of the question: What makes a city great?
One view was shared by all involved: A holistic & harmonised approach to city planning to ensure sustainability, along with the development of communal areas within our cities to build a sense of community is absolutely essential to ensure success across the country.
The report identifies current initiatives and pin-points areas & issues our country needs to address immediately if we are to future-proof and position ourselves to prosper in a rapidly advancing, highly-competitive and globalised world. The report identified 3 major areas to address immediately to avoid future consequences of:
Sydney is going all out with the installation of efficient LED street-lighting & solar arrays reducing power consumption, along with green retrofits minimising carbon pollution and green-walls & roof spaces spread across thousands of square metres improving air quality.
Sydney’s Smart Green Apartments program aims to reduce the cost of purchasing existing residential buildings, while also making them more efficient and environmentally friendly.
“Great cities don’t come by accident. They emerge through choices we make and the commitment we bring to ensuring they are sustainable, equitable, inclusive, stimulating and beautiful”, said Lord Mayor, Clover Moore.
Melbourne is pouring its energies into an Urban Forest Strategy, increasing the tree canopy cover by 22% (up to 40%) by around 2040.
Pedestrians are also being catered to, with large investment in footpath renewal and street furniture in what Lord Mayor Robert Doyle hopes is a step (pun intended) in the right direction to making Melbourne sustainable for future prosperity.
Melbourne’s Smart Blocks initiative also intends to make existing residential buildings more environmentally friendly, efficient and cost effective.
Lord Mayor Graham Quirk is keen on centralisation, believing centralising our essential city services such as cooling, waste, energy & water, along with prioritising all transport forms equally is the key to setting Brisbane up for the future.
“As our cities grow up and become more dense, we need to embrace opportunities for centralisation, cooling, water, waste, energy. Great cities must also prioritise all four modes of transport; public, pedestrian, cycling and cars, rather than prioritising one at the expense of all others”, expressed the Brisbane Lord Mayor.
Alannah MacTiernan, the federal member for Perth, directs our attention to building design and quality.
“There is a balance we need to achieve between planning regulation and best practice development that will ensure our buildings, streets and open spaces make up a real community and not just a collection of separate assets”, urged Ms MacTiernan.